Blog

November 8, 2014

I had my first exhibition featuring “Neelsen 7” in a juried competition for the Charlotte Art League’s “Fall Into Art” exhibit at their gallery on 1517 Camden Road here in Charlotte. The exhibition will run from Nov. 7-28. There are some photos of the reception in the Gallery section.

 

October 31, 2014

I’m posting a new painting, “Neelsen 9” which I implemented a little different style. Hope you like it! Here’s the video:

October 2, 2014

I’m posting “Neelsen 8”, a geometric painting that I experimented with mixing down colors to give an interesting look towards the center of the painting. Posting the video here:

August 30, 2014

Since I posted Neelsen 6, I have sold “Neelsen 2” and “Neelsen 4”. I was also interviewed by Heylos art Blog posted here:

Interview with Erik Neelsen- An artist from Charlotte, NC

Erik Neelsen a self taught artist who began drawing/painting late in life, at around age 40. Since then, he has involved himself more in painting and in 2014 he decided to create his blog to display his work. He paints in acrylic using vibrant colors with geometric shapes to convey his vision. He tries to show movement and dynamism in each painting. In his blog section, he has documented through video how each painting was created.

Heylos had a chance to interview such an amazing talented person and know his thoughts on Art and life.

How is art important in people’s lives?

In terms of importance, I believe that art is an extension of our existence. It records and defines our purpose and will. From architecture to music, the artistic side of us comes out many times over. If you think about it, what is imagination without the arts to define and give life to new concepts? To me, to be human is to be artistic.

Do you have a favorite artist? Why do you like him/her?

My favorite artist would have to be Caravaggio. He was not only an amazing master painter with light and depth, but also a fiery character that had no fear in painting his vision of Biblical scenes, which, at the time was bold. Although a violent man (which may have been from lead poisoning), his works including “The Taking of Christ”, “David and Goliath”, and “Conversion of Saint Paul” and many others eventually overcame his criminal infamy.

What’s your favorite place to see art?

I generally view artwork online and where I find myself to be at the moment. For example, on vacation this year, I had the opportunity to visit the Vatican Museum. But you can find art in many places from hospitals to doctor offices. But I will take time in the future to visit local galleries.

Do you own any pieces of art? If so, what are they?

I only own a couple of home décor pieces. The rest are my own drawings or paintings.

What’s your favorite piece of work that you have created?

I suppose my favorite piece would be one I recently sold, Neelsen 4 because it marked a change to start making my own canvases, painting larger, and recording the production from frame assembly to the finished piece.

What are you working on at the moment?

I’ve completed sketches for my next three paintings. I’m busier in the summer with my family, but when school is back in session, I’ll have time to complete Neelsen 7, 8, and 9 hopefully by October. I’ll continue to make videos of the production of each piece.

Do you sell your work? If so where all do you sell your work?

I sell my artwork through Saatchi online at saatchiart.com/eneelsen.

Do you make a living off your art?

I don’t work as a full time artist. However, if I become more productive and sales increase, I may consider it in the future.

Do you think your country’s government gives enough financial support to local artists?

I don’t have a great deal of knowledge of how much the government supports local artists. But living here in the USA, other than commissioned public artworks, it seems that whenever I hear support being announced for local artists, mostly private entities are funding the projects.

Do you support local artists? If yes, how?

I donate to the Arts and Science Council and follow a few artists from my area on Twitter. I’ll RT their new works or events.

What are you doing when you’re not creating?

I enjoy taking my sons to go run, swim or play soccer. Staying active is important to me. I’m also writing a science fiction screenplay that I hope to complete by October.

What would people be surprised to learn about you?

I was a Marine stationed in Quantico, Virginia. I was trained to work on various helicopters and was assigned to Marine Helicopter Squadron One (which provides transport for the President and other executives) for nearly three years.

Technically, what would you consider to be a piece of art, Why?

This is an interesting question. You can find art in nature and could justifiably call, for example The Grand Canyon a “workof art” that was created by water and wind. But to me, a more definitive description of “a piece of art” is when we intentionally set out to make a physical depiction of either what our senses are telling us at the moment or from our own imagination. Whether we are painting a portrait, or inventing the light bulb, we leave an intentional physical trace of our perception or imagination. And originality is what really sets one piece of art from another. So intention and originality are what in my view defines a piece of art.

Do you have any tips or inspiring words for others?

I haven’t been painting seriously for that long, but what I can truthfully say is to not worry about what others may think when you create something. For whatever reason, fear can be strongly associated with creating or doing something new- for you and others around you. Calm that fear with letting your friends and family be involved as well. And work consistently. It’s really the only way to see results.

Where else can we find you?

I’m at Twitter @ErikNeelsen, Google plus, and have a website at erikneelsen.com. I also have a YouTube channel under my name.

Can you give more insight about you and your work?

When creating artwork, I’m trying to capture, first on sketches, images that come to my mind. These images may come to me at anytime, so I’ll sometimes just sporadically grab a piece of paper and sketch something out. I have a lot of these sketches but only painted six of them so far. I don’t title my paintings other than using my name and a chronological order. I do this so that I don’t impose any preconceived tone to the viewer. However, I do compose music for enhancement of the videos that may project some of my own impression for the perspective painting. My personal aim is to improve my skills as a painter and become more productive. I also will continue to document each painting by video and hopefully improve that process as well.

Have u displayed your works in gallery/art fest?

I don’t think I’ve created enough paintings to apply to an exhibition or physical gallery yet. When I reach a point to where I feel confident to apply, I will look locally to do so. But I do use Twitter, Saatchi online, and my website to display my artwork.

After a long vacation in June I finally got back to work and finished “Neelsen 7”. For this painting, I created a slimmer frame (1.5in) and used multi-colors throughout the entire painting.

May 22, 2014

My largest painting to date “Neelsen 6” marks an attempt at softening the tone and using symmetry for a more subdued feel. Again, I included brief shots at the canvas construction as well. Painting measures 72in x 72in x 3in.

April 10, 2014

My latest painting “Neelsen 5” explores a different perspective using vivid colors. Painting measures 72in x 54.5in x 3in.  I included some of the canvas construction and preparation to give more insight.

March 24, 2014

My newest painting titled Neelsen 4 is my largest painting to date measuring 84in x 36in x 3in.

For this painting, I wanted to not only expand the size, but also make a more dynamic visual impact.