Our roving Flootie reporter Ginny Brennan is at it again. This time she interviews artist Alice Harmon from Spokane, Washington
Artist: Alice Harmon, Spokane, Washington
Ginny: Give me a brief introduction as to who you are and what you do.
Alice: I reside in Spokane Washington with my husband, Chuck Harmon, who is also an artist. My studio is in my home and I paint regularly. Previously I was a member of a local gallery but decided to take a break. I’ve been painting since I was a child. I paint in both oils and acrylics. When I started painting I painted primarily with oils but once we began traveling I ventured into acrylics because of the faster drying time. Lately, I’ve been mostly painting with acrylics.
Ginny: Why do you do what you do?
Alice: I come from a very creative family. My Dad had a newspaper and was very creative with his writing. Both my brothers are gifted with doing beautiful woodwork. My older sister has always been an oil artist and she won many awards and scholarships. This is my sister that had a lot of influence on my early years with oil painting. My other sister creates her art with crafts. I don’t remember when I started painting, in fact, I can’t even remember when not painting.
Ginny: Can you remember one of the first things you drew or painted, etc? What makes it memorable?
Alice: When my children were young and I painted the walls of their rooms with life sized Sesame Street Characters.
Ginny: Any artist you admire famous or not. Do you have a favorite artist?
Alice: I have a collection of “OPA” (other people’s art). I love art all varieties and mediums. My favorites are mostly abstracts and impressionism. If I have to chose a favorite it would be Georgia O” Keeffe.
Ginny: What’s integral to the work of an artist?
Alice: An Artist can create art that has an impact on people. Art can change people, this includes all forms of art, i.e., dance, fine art, poetry, etc.
Ginny: What role does the artist have in society?
Alice: Our role as artist is to offer our audience a different perspective on reality. So people can think differently, or to think “outside the box”. Art can make us all more equal.
Ginny: What art do you most identify with?
Alice: I enjoy all types of art but mostly I like art that is colorful and happy.
Ginny: What other work do you most enjoying doing?
Alice: Besides painting art, I like gardening and home improvement. I do most of the repairs and upkeep around the house, i.e, electrical, plumbing, etc.
Ginny: Where do you gather most of the inspiration for your work?
Alice: My inspiration comes out of my head; it floods my mind. Most of my inspiration is life in general. Art is an avenue for stress release and can also feed off current events. My art can be whimsical to thought provoking.
Ginny: What is your favorite piece of work that you have created (photo included)?
Alice: My favorite piece is hanging in my hallway, “Harmony Cove”, it is a painting featuring a coast town with shops and includes our children’s names on shops that reflect their talents
Ginny: What are you working on at the moment?
Alice: I am currently preparing for a show, called “Joyful”, which will be at the New Moon Gallery on East Sprague in Spokane. The dates are March 18th through April 11th.
Ginny: What jobs have you done other than being an artist?
Alice: I’ve written a newspaper column and feature stories. I’ve managed an office, worked in a grocery store, was an interior designer. I have six children, 14 grandchildren as well as 10 great grand children and one great-great grandchild. In the family I’m known as “Grandma the Great”!
Ginny: Have you every stepped out of your comfort zone and discovered a whole new genre of art? How did it turn out?
Alice: My art is a constant challenge and I believe different genres. My color palette is strong and bright and my results are all unique.
Ginny: What memorable responses have you had to your work?
Alice: Dian Zahner is the person who got me back to painting after a long absence. She invited me to show in their gallery, which I did for a couple of years. I had always painted, but had never thought of selling. Getting into the gallery I learned that others not only liked my work and were very supportive, but also purchased it.
Ginny: What is your dream project?
Alice: I’m living my dream, Able to do just about everything we want. I’m very content and happy where I am today.
Ginny: What is your most favorite or inspirational place?
Alice: I think New Mexico is my favorite place, especially Santa Fe and Albuquerque. I love the colors, the art, the fall weather and the food.
Ginny: What advice do you give aspiring artists?
Alice: Always continue to be encouraged and know you will find out that people like and admire your art. You don’t have to sell art to be encouraged to continue. Be happy with whatever you’re doing.
Ginny: What are your favorite color, animal, season and movie?
Alice: Blue is my favorite color, cats my favorite animal, season, well there are two, Spring and Fall, and my favorite movie is Benny & June.
Ginny: Where can we view your art?
Alice: On harmonyartsspokane.com. Also, this year, we will be hosting during the Studio Art Tour, September 10 and 11, you can see my art as well as the works of nine other artist on display.