Interview with Beauty in the Breakdown artist Camilla d’Errico
SH: When do you get the most painting done? Morning, Noon, Night, Middle of the Night/Morning?
CD: If you can believe it I’m both a night owl and a morning person so most of my work is done in the am and late late at night. I think I spent a couple of months going to bed at 4am and getting up at 9am while painting some of these pieces. Not much sleep was had, but it was worth it. I never regret my sleepless nights and days because I’m so motivated and inspired that if I had it my way I’d pull two months of all nighters if it wouldn’t kill me.
SH: Have you ever accidentally drank or was about to drink the dirty ‘paint’ water?
CD: Full disclosure….yes…hangs head in shame. I totally dunked my paint brush in my tea and didn’t realize it until I had a sip. Not surprising fact; Holbein Oil paints don’t taste good.
SH: What inspired the direction of your work for the upcoming show, Beauty in the Breakdown?
CD: This show is my 10yr anniversary show so I spent some time thinking about my journey as an artist over the past decade, from the beginning to present and was really fascinated by the journey my work seemed to take. People reflect who they are in their art and seeing who I was back then and who I am now was something that I wanted to explore. The work is an exploration of the many facets of myself as an artist and person so there is a wide variety of themes rather than one singular one. I equated it to a parfait, there is a layer of playfulness, sadness, romanticism and even the bizarre. Each piece is inspired by a different faction of myself but also a mixture of past and present. I am a hopeless romantic to this day but I’ve changed in 10 years, from a single girl to a married woman. I can look back at my early work and see a lot of themes of unrequited love, heartbreak and passion but rather than repeat that theme I wanted to blend it with who I am now, so it’s a more mature view about love I think.
Camilla d’Errico “Caged” – Oil on Wood – 11″ x 15.75″
SH: What other artists work are you ‘fangirling’ over right now?
CD: I am head over heels for Hikari Shimoda right now. I just had a show with her in NYC at Cotton Candy Machine and seeing her work in person was unbelievable. There is so much depth and layers in her work that will blow you away. She’s a total sweetheart so that makes her art that much more beautiful to me. I could look at her work for hours it’s so good.
SH: What motivated you to choose the life/career of an artist?
CD: Poor life choices. Ha ha no I’m kidding. The truth is that I always wanted to be an artist since I was a kid. Anyone that knows me knows that even as a kid all I was interested in was drawing and watching cartoons…and dinosaurs. I would have been a paleontologist if I didn’t have such fair skin and burned like a lobster in a pot whenever I’m in the sun for 10 minutes. So I put all my eggs in the artist basket and worked hard to develop my style and career and I love it. I get to be a big kid and its great.
SH: What brand of paint so you use? What’s your favorite color and brush right now?
CD: I get asked this a lot, I use Holbein DUO oils. They are so delightful! I am in love with Ice Green, it’s like a soft teal that I wish I could just paint my entire house with, it would be so magical.
Camilla d’Errico “Charlie” – Acrylic on Wood – 12″ x12″
SH: How long does it take to complete a single piece? Do you work on multiple pieces at one time?
CD: Honestly, it depends on the size and elements in the painting, plus how much energy I have during my painting sessions. I don’t even know how to measure how long it takes sometimes because I can work on a painting for a week from morning till the wee hours of the night. It can take anywhere from a month to a week and a half of hardcore painting and I tend to work on one at a time so it keeps things straightforward in my mind.
SH: What creative person; artist, musician, director, family member etc… has had the most influence or inspired your own artistic voice?
CD: That’s a HUGE question like casting a net into an ocean that connects to a lake. I don’t know that I have ONE person that has inspired me the most but rather a cast of characters that I can say have influenced me over the years. If I had to narrow it down to the people who have inspired me to be myself and given me the confidence to express myself freely then I’d say it would be my sisters, my bff and my ever supportive husband. The people who are closest to me have given me the support that I needed to be myself without worrying that I had to edit myself.
Camilla d’Errico “Queen Beeatrice” – Oil on wood – 10.5″ x 15.5″
SH: What do you know now, that you wish you would have known when first embarking on your artistic career?
CD: I didn’t know that being an artist was also a business. I think with my heart first and my instinct is to just go with the passionate side of art without considering the consequences. It would have been great if I had known to consider the pragmatic side of being an artist I think I would have been better prepared for what it means to be a professional artist now.
SH: If your could invite 5 people dead or alive to a dinner party, who would be on your guest list and what’s on the menu?
CD: Oh my gosh…i kinda want to invite a guest list of fictional characters. I’ll answer this in two parts. Real life…hmm…. Leonardo DaVinci, Albert Einstein, Ian Somerhalder, Jane Austin and Cleopatra. I couldn’t imagine a crazier cast for a wildly inspiring dinner party! We’d eat a gigantic Italian meal that is 7 courses of carby goodness and end it with a glass of grappa over gelato. If I could have a dinner party with fictional characters I’d hate Damon Salvatore, Daryl Dixon, Dean Winchester, Mindy Lahiri and Tuxedo Mask. We would eat Chinese take-out because with that ensemble you know that it’s a safe bet, but i think by the end of the dinner half of us would be dead. It would be a memorable night thought and that’s what life’s all about after all.
Camilla d’Errico “My Beautiful Celestia” – Acrylic on canvas – 16″ x 20″
Opening Reception with artists on hand: Saturday, February 28th 6-9PM