THE PAINTING PROCESS
Nestled in the iconic corner of Christopher & Gay street in New York City's West Village, Whynot Coffee & Wine has quickly rose to be the place to be seen while drinking the highest quality coffee & curated wines in all of New York.
The interior of Whynot is decorated to feel like 1960's Paris. Adorning the walls are my paintings of women like Brigitte Bardot, Jane Birkin, and Catherine Deneuve.
One day, a beautiful Russian Model named Lada Kravchenko walked into Whynot and found herself drawn to my artwork. She later commissioned me to paint her portrait.
For the Lada's painting, I moved away from the very clean aesthetic seen in my more recent work and went back to the days when my paintbrush was a bottle of spray paint. Inspired by the beauty of what some might call "urban decay," I spent a few weeks layering the background with multiple layers of spray paint and graffiti writing.
After completing the commission, I felt like there was more work to be done with Lada. She will be the subject of a new series of paintings that I hope to complete by Spring 2014.
Q&A WITH LADA
Q: Where were you born/raised?
A: I was born in Moscow, Russia and I grew up there. That made me being a patriot of my country and a huge fan of my native city.
Q: When did you begin modeling?
A: I began modeling at the age of 18 but I started my international career only a year and a half later, while joined the team of Eskimo models, Paris.
Q: Where do you live now?
A: Since 2011 I`ve been living in New York, but for now I wish to split my time between London, Paris, New York and Moscow.
Q: What modeling agency are you current with?
Q: What inspires you?
A: I think all the people of creative professions are inspired by beauty. The only difference make the choice of the source which gives it to them. I get inspiration from the culture of my country, from art and theatre, while playing chess with the smartest people, during horse riding with the ones I love. In general, like all introverts, I look at the world through the prism of my own soul, and since the soul is the refuge of God, the whole world is beautiful.
Q:Is there any model who's career you try to emulate?
A: No way. I`m one and only idol for myself. I believe it`s impossible to become outstanding when you emulate someone`s achievements. Yet, the lifestyles and personalities of Uschi Obermaier and Gia Carangi are very close to my understanding of what real living means. They both were super models, the legends of their time, but what is more important - they knew what they wanted in their life besides of the career.
Q: Is there a portfolio online where people can see your work?
Q: Is there a fashion line that you one day hope to model for?
A: I deeply admire Tom Ford, Valentino, Balmain and Ralph Lauren but the truly desirable aim for me is the jewelry campaign for Stephen Webster.
Q: I know you love the color black, what is it about black that you love?
A: The Black color for me is the ode to the process of defining a personality. I think people sculpt their characters while living and the contrast between black and white, this sharp line of total clarity, symbolize the diamond perfection of ideal human being. And that`s what I aspire to.
Q: How do you feel about being the subject of future paintings?
A: To be a painter`s muse is an honor for every woman and an essential purpose of being for every model.