Artist William Rose

Artwork by William Rose
Artwork by William Rose
William Rose
William Rose

William Rose, a figurative/portrait artist from Kansas, is garnering considerable attention on a national level as one of a select group of very talented representational figurative artists painting today.  Following creative bursts in music and writing, he stumbled across a talent - which quickly became a passion - for drawing and painting.  A steady stream of requests for figurative and portrait work from many local and high-profile national collectors soon followed, including representation by multiple fine art galleries.

In addition to appearing in a wide range of national publications and juried shows - including covers for American Artist Magazine and Poets & Artists - William produced all of the artwork for a new film associated with the Eastwoods in Carmel about a teenage art prodigy.

His artwork has recently been featured in national art competitions including Artist Magazine's "The Year's Best Art",  American Artist Magazine's 70th Anniversary Competition, and International Artist Magazine's 2009 Annual competition.  Recently, his work has graced the cover of Poets & Artists, and was featured in the new national art quarterly, Blue Canvas. In November William will have his first major solo Museum exhibit at the prestigious Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art.

Interview with the Artist

How did you interpret using the Strathmore Thistle for the pad cover artwork? Anything else you'd like to share about your piece?
Since my drawing was going to be a female portrait, I considered a couple of options to incorporate a representation of the Strathmore thistle. The two options I narrowed it down to were the earring and placing an actual thistle in the model's hair. Erin - the model I used for the drawing - had beautiful large gold earrings that worked perfectly - simply converted through the magic of charcoal into a thistle.  And I believe as you look at the drawing it's easy to see why I chose Erin as the subject - unbridled emotion nearly bleeds from her eyes. For me, representing emotion like that in charcoal or paint, induces a creative state that continually pulls me back to the easel.

How did the Strathmore paper you used for the project affect your drawing (or painting) techniques?
I've used the 400 series drawing paper for many of my charcoal and graphite drawings over the years. I love the texture - not too smooth / not too rough - and it's strong enough to beat up a little with numerous layers of both compressed charcoal and the softer vine charcoal.  For the kind of work I usually create, it's - simply put... the perfect paper.

Which artists inspire you?
I can't even begin to list all of the incredible artists who have inspired me. And the list is constantly evolving. As my work is primarily figurative, I am always on the prowl for inspiration from today's amazingly diverse and talented contemporary artists like Lipking, Kanevsky, Calibey, Liepke, Carson, Francis - man I could go on and on. And as I work to incorporate a looser, more expressive style, I'm beginning to draw tremendous inspiration from the abstract expressionists of the 50's.

What advice would you give to beginning artists?
Learn to draw - and I know it's easier for some than others - but above all else - acquire the ability to guide your hand to create on paper or canvas what your eyes see. If you can do that first, then you can do anything.

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