To drastically oversimplify things, when I’m cruising the magazines and blogs for inspiration, things usually appeal to me for one of two reasons. The first being work created with a technique and style akin to my own. This kind of work allows me to gain some insight into a fellow draftsman or designers process. I try to glean some ideas I can work into my own approach. This could be called work of a common vernacular. Creatives that fall into this category of mine include: Yuko Shimizu, Paul Pope and Michael Perry. The second category encompasses work that is so beyond my own abilities and understanding that I simply have to tip my hat and admire it, free from deconstruction (at least concerning technique). Amy Bennett resides solidly in this latter category.
An oil painter who received her MFA from the New York Academy of Art, Bennett creates narrative landscape paintings with quite a peculiar vantage point. Browsing her portfolio I tried to grasp how exactly she achieves her unique light and perspective. Her compositions feel as though they’re referenced from a tilt shifted photograph, shot from a low flying helicopter. A read through her ‘About’ section reveals her process. Bennett creates a diorama around which she creates a series of paintings. The paintings put you in the position of an all seeing voyeur. Scenes of celebration, domestic dispute, grieving and innocence unfold through the seasons in this small neighborhood. Her process must take a very long time, but the results show in spades through each piece. I’m in awe of her dedication and unique approach to a very traditional form of painting.