Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday Feature: Liana Yarckin

"Summer Has Arrived" watercolor by Liana Yarckin
Hi Everyone,

Today's feature is the delightful Liana Yarckin.  She was trained in Architecture and Interior Design.  Her work is fresh, cheerful and colorful.  You can tell her spirit signs through when she paints.

To see more of her work check out her blog.

How did you get your start?  What’s your artist journey so far?

I got my start when my Aunt gave me some watercolors when I was about 4 years old.  It was frustrating because I used too much water on non-watercolor paper.  Forty years later, I still experience some frustration, but, overall more joy and fulfillment with watercolor.   For me, painting can take me away from whatever stresses I may have or I can use it to challenge me, push me in something that is just for me.
"Apples Peaches and Plums" watercolor by Liana Yarckin
 Where were you born?  Los Angeles, California

If you could live anywhere where would you live? 

Any beach with sunny weather and a city/town close by.  When I am at the beach, I can look at the ocean from sun up ‘til sun down.  I love the changing tide, the sound of waves or no waves.  A town nearby so I can reconnect with the world.
"Paris Cafe" watercolor by Liana Yarckin
 What’s your favorite thing to paint and why? 

Two years ago my answer would have been flowers.  I loved painting the folds and curves and of course the gorgeous colors in flowers.  Currently, I am working on a café series, which encompasses street cafes, street scenes to groups of people and even a lonely valet stand.  I am trying to address capturing the feeling of these groups of people.  People breaking bread, enjoying each other’s company, sitting alone, the mass of people coming and going, maybe together, alone, yet a group.  From a technical point of view, I am trying to simplify the details by mingling colors of wet into wet just to give the essence of what is there.  Simplify the details, give a hint and hopefully end with a painting that is pleasing to the eye and connects with others.

Could you talk about your painting techniques? 

I like to paint in several washes.  Layering the color up to build the painting.  I like the results of layering transparent color.  Whether wet into wet or wet onto dry, it can be like magic to see the color combination.
"City Cafe" watercolor by Liana Yarckin

How did you arrive at your current style? 

I am attracted to watercolors that are “loose” and I always want to paint that way.  I have taken workshops and read books by artists that paint this way.  However, I think I am tight by nature and you can’t truly change your natural style.
"Locally Grown" watercolor by Liana Yarckin
 Do you have a favorite artist?  Who has been your biggest inspiration? 

My favorite watercolor artists are Dan Burt for his bright color and seems like spontaneity, Skip Lawrence for his beautiful wet color washes and whites and Andy Evansen for his color and looseness.  I was lucky enough to take a workshop with Andy.  He is very sweet and so happy to teach and help his students reach their goals.

What are some of your favorite things or things that are essential to your well being/success as an artist? 
A good frame of mind and my husband who is so encouraging and supportive of me.  We are all in a different place in our art journey and it is important to remember that each of our journeys is our own and not meant to be compared.  My husband makes it so easy for me to paint.  That is a great gift he gives to me.  He is brutally honest when I ask his opinion, but, more importantly, he allows me to paint uninterrupted at any time of the day.  He will keep our kids occupied and fed (on the weekends) so that I can have this time.  He is the one that tells me, “it is important for you to have this time”.
"Grapes in the Sunlight" watercolor by Liana Yarckin
 Do you have go-to paints/colors, what are your favorites? 
Permanent Rose, Windsor Blue, Scarlet Lake and Cad. Orange is my go-to colors.  I feel very comfortable using Permanent Rose and Windsor Blue.  I know exactly how much to use to get what I want.  I love the punch Scarlet Lake and Cad. Orange can add.

What are five things you would like to happen in your life in the next five years? Dream big here:)
  1. To get to the next level of my painting style!  To get really, really good.
  2. To be recognized in a juried show, which means I will have to enter more than the one I have entered, which means I need to turn my focus on competitions instead of just painting happily along, which stresses me.
  3. To have a solo show each year. 
  4. To be the patient loving mom and wife I want to be, which means learning to cope and mature.
  5. To take my mom on a trip and enjoy it thoroughly.  Maybe an art workshop in a tropical location or in Europe?!
"Sunflower Fields" watercolor by Liana Yarckin
 What is your advice for other artists who are just getting started in their career? 

Paint, paint, paint and don’t get discouraged.  Take classes, join a local art association and get involved in a blog.  Those things have helped me to go further on my art journey in different ways.  It is great to share with others what you are going though and also to watch and learn what other artists are going through on their art journey.  I feel like I know my blogger friends as if they live right here with me.  The feedback and fellowship from the blogger world has been wonderful.

What is the best advice that you have received as an artist?

Keep it simple, don’t overthink it.

"The Party" watercolor by Liana Yarckin

Chocolate or vanilla? chocolate

Sunny beach or rustic mountain retreat?  Sunny beach

Book or movie?  movie

Favorite author?  I mostly read art books and art magazines.  I have 3 boys so I also fall asleep as soon as my head hits the pillow these days.

Favorite movie?  Blades of Glory, I could never be that silly.

Romance or comedy?  comedy

Favorite ice cream flavor?  Moose tracks

Night owl or morning person?  Neither, I am midday.  I feel most alive, awake and motivated midday.

Cake or Cupcakes?  Cake, there is more area of moistness. 

Thank you Liana:))

See you on Monday,



  1. I love Liana's work too. It is so cheery and uplifting! I have followed her for some time. It was really nice to read her interview and see a few pieces I hadnt seen before :0)

  2. There is a clarity and freshness about Liana's work that is exciting. It's nice to see her acknowledge the part her husband plays, a lot of what we are able to is due to the patience of our spouse.

    Thanks Carrie, thank Liana - an enjoyable interview

  3. Liana's work is outstanding! Wonderful interview as always, Carrie! I LOVE her "Grapes in the Sunlight"...

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