Artist Interview

By Vanessa Scott

Kelly Barrieres, a former student of East Stroudsburg University, is currently attending Kings College for her Master’s degree in Biology. Barriers was born in Franklin New Jersey, where she spent half of her life, before moving to Bushkill Pennsylvania. The artist started drawing at a young age but it wasn’t till her third year in high school that she discovered what she came to realize as a hidden talent, her ability to draw. Her discovery came when she was given the assignment to draw a face in her art class. Barrieres decide to draw her own face, and drew it well. Since her discovery that she could draw her own face, she developed a new love for the world of art. Barrieres loved it so much, she began capturing faces and the world around her. Her goal became to present people and things in a beautiful way, taking ordinary scenes or ordinary people and making people realize how beautiful and interesting they really are.

In her works, she likes to draw with pencils, charcoal, and pastels. In her paintings she uses oil paints. She describes her painting style as messy, using lots of brush strokes, color, and texture. A bit of Caravaggio’s chiaroscuro can be seen in her works, and that’s what she wants. Barrieres believes that the higher contrast brings out the persons best features. Monet is also one of her favorite artists though she admits that she is still in the experimental stage of trying to find her own personal style-something that defines her through her paintings.


Q: What is more important to you, if you like the painting, or if the person you’re giving it to likes it?
A: I’m picky about making my work perfect. For me it never will be. Something can always be fixed or touched up. I remember reading about Leonardo Da Vinci and how he would stand staring at his paintings for hours trying to find something to fix because he thought that something could always be fixed. He might make a single brush stroke in a couple hours’ time.


Q: What do you think is the difference between art and entertainment?
A: I think art and entertainment are one in the same. You might think of entertainment as exciting, something that captures your attention, a different world you get consumed by whether it’s funny, upsetting, frightening, or pleasant through its characters and settings. I think art encompasses all of that and I try to include as much of that as I can into my paintings and drawings.


Q: Why do you think what you do is considered art?
A: I create pictures and paintings from what I see around me and try to interpret them appropriately bringing the viewer into a different world. I think that’s art.


Q: Do you envy other artist?
A: Always. I feel like someone will always be better than me at some aspect of art. And everyone has his or her own style. It’s fun to look at others people work to see how they’ve interpreted something. You can learn a lot from others by getting a different view and idea from their interpretation of something.


Q: How do you think other artist see you?
A: I hope they like my work. Most people compliment me on my portrait drawings or paintings. It’s good motivation to keep drawing or painting when people like your work, and even better motivation to learn what they didn’t like to try something different the next time or try a different technique.

Q: If you had to trash one of your works, which would it be and why?
A: I don’t think I would be able to do that to any of my works. I put a lot of emotion and a little bit of myself into everything I draw or paint. I couldn’t just throw myself away.

Q: What do you see are your greatest achievement in you work and why?
A: Looking back at my first paintings and drawings I can see how far I’ve progressed, see how far I’ve come and learning what works and what doesn’t is one of the best parts about drawing and painting. Experimenting is important. You can’t be afraid to just dive in and try something. And if it doesn’t work you try something else. Without doing that I would not be as good an artist as I feel I am today.