ARTS AND CULTURE: April Riggs, Iron Moon Art

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Submitted photos

How did the Project start? If it’s not a commission, I usually just paint whatever I’m feeling… sometimes it’s whatever I’m watching or listening to at the time.

What are three adjectives to describe your style? Colorful, Spooky, Realism

Walk us through your creative process; Does it vary, if so, how? I have this weird superstition that I can’t paint with makeup on, I guess it’s due to fear of accidentally touching my face and then the painting and accidentally ruining it…so, I start off with a clean face. I then move on to drawing my design/ideas, Then I transfer them over to my painting surface. I usually paint on Arches Cold Press watercolor paper. I turn on some background noise, whether it’s music or the television and I turn off my phone. I usually don’t check it unless I go to take a progress photo to avoid distractions.

How has your art evolved since you started? I started drawing as a kid, but I started taking it more seriously in high school. My work back then was mostly a graffiti style, always using spray paint and being very abstract with the way I painted. Now, I specialize in realistic portraits.

What is your favorite creative tool, and why? As far as mediums, right now my favorite is gouache. To me, it has the blendability of oils while being more of a watercolor. I change my favorites all of the time, but right now it is definitely gouache.

What about being an artist fills your cup? Why should others take interest in the arts? Art is who I am. Since I was a kid, I always wanted to be an artist…maybe because I grew up with such a creative dad. I love seeing people progress in their work, and it’s just an incredible feeling knowing that something you created can bring so much joy to other people. Others should take interest in art because it’s an escape from reality. It’s a way you can express your emotions and get out what you need to say without even saying a word. Art is everywhere and without artists, the world would be boring.

Any advice for new or struggling artists? My main advice is to not go into a new project and think it’s going to fail… Basically go in knowing that it’s going to look good and make it happen! Also, try every single medium you can get your hands on.

What upcoming project should we look for, and where can we look for it? This time of year is always my favorite time to paint! Most of my artwork relates back to Halloween and I will have new pieces soon! My main focus right now is my new business, Beetle & Bone, but I always make time for my art. Find me on Facebook or Instagram @Ironmoonart

What question do you never get asked that you would like to be asked? How would you answer? I really wish people would take the time and ask how many hours a piece took to make. I see people shopping for artwork all of the time, and shutting down so many artists because of their price point and basically mocking them. I feel like people would start to view artists differently if they actually knew the amount of time and work it takes to create each piece.