Five Questions for Kim Johnson Nechtman

We’re looking forward to welcoming new-to-us watercolor instructor Kim Johnson Nechtman to the studio next year with her Portraits and Animals workshop from June 7-13.

Kim discovered her love for the creative process at a young age. On the advice of family and friends concerned that she have a ‘real career’, Kim completed her degree in psychology before pursuing her real passion – watercolor. Kim’s workshops on human and animal experiences bring the thrill of throwing, dropping, and pushing paints until the subjects emerge from the paper. She believes that every painting is a learning experience and, in the need to be patient through the experience. Her ease as an instructor encourages you to experiment and take on new challenges.

To get to know her a little better in advance of her workshop, we asked Kim a few questions about her personal art practice, approach to workshops, and creativity in general.

Q: How did you first begin creating art with the medium(s) you’ll be using in your workshop?

KJN: This has always been my preferred medium. I’ve painted with watercolor since high school, but it wasn’t until I was in my early 30’s that I became serious about the medium when I started taking classes at Scottsdale Artists’ School as a pastime. But, the more I painted the better I became, the more interested I was in becoming proficient in watercolor.

Q: What is your most unexpected source of inspiration?

KJN: I always thought I was inspired by a particular subject matter, but my unexpected source of inspiration is light and shadow. The way they describe a subject, and how those lights and shadows define lost and found shapes; I can lose myself in them.

Q: What are your biggest challenges to creating art and how do you deal with them?

KJN: My biggest challenges are staying loose and not putting too much information in a painting. I deal with these issues by pretending I’m painting in front of an audience. Funny thing, I seem to paint more loosely and with more freedom when I’m in front of an audience than I do by myself!

Q: What advice has influenced you?

KJN: The best advice I’ve received is to paint what I want, what inspires me, whatever moves me to paint, and to just paint.

Q: What’s one tip you have or trick you use for keeping your studio space organized?

KJN: That’s a good one! Have people to your studio on a regular basis! This always makes me clean up my space!