Depicting Reality

American Art Collector|June 2020

Depicting Reality
Having a 30-year career in art direction, graphic design and illustration, Donna Slade has what she calls a “straightforward approach” to her contemporary realistic paintings. She observes her subjects closely, paying attention to all the details and aims to “capture and portray the ‘real’ and not the ‘ideal.’”

Slade also studied architectural drafting, so her background in pen and ink easily translated to her passion for colored pencils. Working with colored pencils is a very time-consuming process for Slade, with her larger pieces taking hundreds of hours. She works from her own photographs, often combining and cropping elements from multiple images. Once the composition is ready she begins to draw.

“In 1990 I discovered and became a charter member of the Colored Pencil Society of America. The colored pencil allowed me to keep the fine detail and my passion for color. My paintings were always very detailed and realistic but varied in subject matter,” she says. “I had painted a few portraits but never really considered myself as a portrait artist. But I found myself infatuated with painting faces. I find my passion for portraits growing stronger as I continue to embrace the journey of discovering my artistic voice.”


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June 2020