“My art has truly helped me through the toughest time of my life”

Lynn Howart is an incredibly talented artist from Scotland. She has won multiple awards and recognitions for her work such as: Pastel Guild of Europe International Juried Show 2020, Paisley Art Institute prize 2019, among others.

Lynn is very passionate about life and she expresses precisely that through her art. She specializes in the medium of pastel, and that is how she gives her paintings luminosity. 

As a multifaceted woman, Lynn not only paints but also teaches, she has been in multiple exhibitions, collaborated with various artists, but best of all, is her desire to continue growing and reaching an increasingly wide audience.

In this Q&A Scottish artist Lynn Howart shares with PoseSpace how she’s been interested in art since an early age, so many valuable lessons for beginner artists, some adorable pet portraits (really adorable), and more.

How did you start being interested in art?

I’ve been drawing since I was two years old! Both my grandmothers encouraged me to be creative so it was a natural thing for me to go to Art School after I finished High School. Grays School of Art in Aberdeen, Scotland gave me a solid education in life drawing – something that seems to be missing more and more at art schools these days. The ability to draw from life is the basic foundation upon which you can really build a career in art. 

What life experiences have influenced your work?

I guess having a passion for art is either something you have or don’t have! I’ve been very lucky that I have always loved what I do and I have been fortunate enough to have had the incredible support of my dear husband until he passed away suddenly in 2019. My three children are a true source of inspiration and have encouraged me to keep going when things looked bleak. My art has truly helped me through the toughest time of my life.

Your pieces have very vibrant colors, what does it inspire you when you paint?

Although I love to draw with charcoal in monochrome I do love to break out the colourful pastels! I use Unison pastels and some Terry Ludwigs in my colourful pieces as they have such vibrancy and they produce the most amazing ‘lit from within’ effects. I’m often asked what medium my paintings are as they often look like oils or acrylics! I’m inspired to paint what’s around me so I always keep my camera to hand. So if I see something that catches my eye I can take a quick photo for reference. Inspiration can strike at any time so I like to be prepared! 

What do you think of PoseSpace? Do you have a favorite model? 

I discovered Pose Space many years ago when I was looking for a model in a particular pose. Although I went to live life classes I never seemed to get the pose I was particularly looking for. As it was run by other artists they were obviously the ones who chose the poses each session. 

Some of the models I have drawn a few times are Vaunt, Becca, Paris and Zaza. I also love drawing Dan’s face as it’s so expressive! 

We notice you do pet portraits. Is it more difficult than taking portraits of humans?

No not at all! I find pet portraits easier for some reason! As a dog lover I really enjoy trying to capture the soul of the animal I’m painting. I usually find that connection in the eyes! If you get the eyes and the feeling right it lends a real power to a pet portrait and the delight when I hand a commissioned piece over to the client is always wonderful!

What are your favorite mediums and why?

Soft pastel and charcoal are my favourite mediums followed by oil then acrylic then watercolour. I love pastel as it’s such an immediate medium – you can create a painting very quickly with pastel! 

How do you start a work — do you have any rituals?

I like to feel comfortable in my studio – I’ll have a cup of tea while I’m thinking about what I’m painting and I always have music on in the background. I settle down to work and can get lost in my painting and often find many hours have passed and I need a sandwich or another cup of tea! It’s a great way to detach yourself from the cacophony of the outside world! No wonder many mental health experts suggest art therapy! 

Do you have a favorite living artist, whether famous or completely unknown?

My favourite living artist is an incredible American pastellist called Sally Strand. Her paintings are truly exquisite! It’s not often I get art envy but when I see her paintings I’m always blown away by them! 

What is the most valuable lesson or advice you can give to a young or starting artist?

If you are taking on commissioned work, always get your paperwork in order! Take a non refundable deposit of at least 25% upfront! Oh and practice practice practice! Daily drawing sharpens your skills better than anything! There is no magical shortcut to success – you just have to keep working hard! 

Website : https://www.lynnhowarth.co.uk/

Instagram: @scottishpastelartist

Facebook: Lynn HowARTh

Twitter: @lynnbabs

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