Week 4: Artist Interview – Haley Toyama, Emily Babbette, and Liz Talbot

Hayley Toyama, "Decent Donuts"

Hayley Toyama, “Decent Donuts”

Lightfast. The gallery this week at the Dutzi gallery really spoke out to me. I guess it is because the paintings here were about SoCal so I have that kind of connection to the art works. I also liked the fact that they were simpler, little pieces. As I mentioned in my previous posts I prefer simplicity. Liz and Haley were at the gallery, however, Emily was not able to make it. Also, both artists requested to not have their picture taken. I respect their wishes and so I only have pictures of their work.

Light makes everything. That is completely true. Without light, we cannot see anything. There would be no colors in the world and everything would be in darkness. “Luminosity, or lack of, has the power to change or perceptions and guide the pace that we read the images.” It’s true how light changes the perspective. Depending on how something is lit, it may come off as creepy or heavenly. Haley and Liz chose the theme of light because as painters, they like to control the perspective. What kind of vibe do you get from Decent Donuts? I think the light coming from the donut shop is like ray of light that signifies safety and good while the darkness surrounding the shop is all the bad.

Some of these paintings were actually painted on location. Liz went to these alley ways, sat down, and took in the details of her surroundings. She was able to capture the scene she was going to paint. Both of them have been doing oil paintings for about 3-4 years but also do other arts such as graphite, paper cutouts, water colors, drawings, animation, and typography to name a few. After graduating they plan to get their Masters in Fine Arts.

Haley Toyama, "Psychic"

Haley Toyama, “Psychic”

Haley Toyama, "Parking"

Haley Toyama, “Parking”

There was something about Haley’s paintings that stood out from the rest. Three particular paintings I want to talk about are Psychic, Parking, and Used Cars. I found it odd and interesting that Psychic and Parking  had a special pinkish light to them when compared to all the other paintings. So I asked Haley why was the light different. She told me that pink is one of the most gender colors and it gives off a feminine glow. Put along side with the darkness of the surroundings it gives the painting a whole eerie vibe.

Haley Toyama, "Used Cars"

Haley Toyama, “Used Cars”

Also in Used Cars, the light was just normal. So again I asked her why was this one not pink. She said the light in this one was just to go with the flow of the painting, however, there is a different meaning behind the painting. She gave me a little clue: what colors are in this picture along with the word “used”? The colors in the painting are red, white, and blue, the color of our country, America. She did not give me a direct answer but I think what it means is that maybe us Americans are being used and we don’t know it. Or maybe that our country is old and needs to change. What do you think?


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