Mark Lemon: "Man exists by the real, but lives by the ideal." Everyone has that one thing that goes beyond the routine of everyday life, something that touches their spirit, whether it's snowriding, golf, reading, dance, music, socializing, etc. For me its painting.
ML: When I was about 9 or 10, my dad did this impressive pencil drawing of an elephant for me. That's when I made up my mind to be an artist. I did my first oil painting at 11, then tried various mediums in high school. Life's path then took a few bumps and turns. I started painting again earnestly in 1990.
ML: I would say that it's curiosity that inspires me. I'm always anxious to see the result of trying a new subject or color relation or technique. It's said learning art is like a voyage on the ocean: you can only see about 15 miles to the horizon. You have to cover that 15 miles before you can see the next horizon. I can't wait to see what's over the next horizon!
I'm not always in the right mood to paint, but once I start, I quickly get into that zone where the process takes over and time barely exists.
ML: I have tried many mediums, and admire those who have mastered them, but for me oil is the most versatile. I can get most anywhere I need to go with it, and it lends itself to changes and corrections.
ML: It's classical realism based on direct observation. I work mostly from life. I use photo references when necessary, treating every work from what I've observed from real life. I try for accuracy in my brushwork but keep it loose enough to see the hand of the artist in it.
ML: I would have many questions for artists like Joaquin Sorolla, John Singer Sargent, Johannes Vermeer or Nicolai Fechin, but, honestly, the one whose company I might enjoy the most is Charley Russell, for his humor and storytelling ability. He also had a great knowledge of his subject matter.
VD: Do you own a favorite piece of art?
ML: A pair of handmade spurs by Bob McIllveen.
ML: I'm represented by "Fusion!" In Eagle at Fourth and Grand Avenue. I also show by appointment at my studio. Call 328-6574 for more information.