Speaker 1 (00:00):
Paint, what you see, not what you think you see.
Speaker 2 (00:04):
This is the Bold Artist Podcast.
Speaker 3 (00:09):
You have answers, and you're expressing them in your art. Your art is important, and it needs to be seen.
Speaker 2 (00:17):
Welcome. And let's get started with today's episode. We're back with another episode of the Bold Artist podcast. And today I'm here with my co-host, Charla Maarschalk, to introduce a very special guest artist to you. Good morning, Charla.
Speaker 3 (00:39):
Good morning, Marijanel. Yes. Corey Moortgat is your next guest, and she is very special to Bold School. If you guys are inside of Bold School, you know, Corey well. Probably even better than me, because she is a mentor with us there, and she is inside our community almost every single day. Talking with our artists. Corey is awesome. She came around Bold School, I think, right in the very beginning. She's one of the people I remember first communicating with on there. She was so eager to learn and excited to learn, and she was messaging me about how to grow her business. And I helped her with her website, and it was a lot of fun to get to know her and see her incredible work. It was amazing before Bold School, and it's even more amazing now. I won't even take credit for any of that. It's not Bold School. It's her. She's an incredible artist. She's, she's just got such deep thoughts and meaning in her work. And she's so, um, vulnerable, I guess, as an artist and talks openly about what she's painting and why she's painting. And she's known in our community and anyone who follows her art for her expressive faces and the emotion in her work, just incredible and her amazing magenta palettes. They're just so beautiful. So, yes, Corey is an incredible artist, and I'm really excited for you guys to get to hear her story.
Speaker 2 (01:55):
Yes. I had such a good time interviewing Corey. We actually had to interview early in the morning in my time -- in Pacific time -- because she's three hours ahead over in Jacksonville, Florida. So, I got up bright and early and put on some mascara and hoped I, you know, looked okay for the interview. And I so enjoyed it because as you mentioned already, Corey is vulnerable and real not only in who she is as a person, but in what she expresses through her paint. In her career, she has explored many art mediums and landed here at pure paint in acrylic and mentors in Bold School. And so let's take it right on over and hear the interview with Corey.
Speaker 2 (02:39):
Hi there. Corey. I'm so happy to have you on the show today. I was hoping that you could just start out by painting us a picture of who is Corey Moortgat.
Speaker 1 (02:50):
Yes, well, thanks so much for having me. Um, I am, it's hard to really describe all of what I am. I'm a mother to three, almost teenagers. I've got a 12 year old, a 14 year old, and 15 year old. So, they're almost all up there. Um, I am a wife. I have a degree in fine arts from college. Then I went on from college to get a degree in art therapy, a master's degree. Um, I did not work as an art therapist for all that long, um, because I felt I was lacking in a lot of the creativity that I wanted to pursue. Um, so I've kind of gone off in different directions with different, uh, jobs, but they've all had creativity and art somewhere, you know, mixed in with them. Um, now these days I am working for Bold School as a mentor and an instructor. And I am trying to sort of build myself up as a professional artist, as well.
Speaker 2 (03:57):
Well, you're doing a wonderful job. I visited your website, um, just in preparation for this show. And I just really admire your work. Not only the work that you're doing currently, but your history of creativity. I saw your, even your work is published in books, and you have your own book, and it just seems like you have always nurtured your creative spirit and made sure that you stay free and not. So, um, do I have that right?
Speaker 1 (04:25):
Yeah, definitely. I mean, like I said, there's been times in my life that maybe I wasn't pursuing, you know, fine arts, but I've always been working in an art related field. I've always had art as a and visual design as a center in my life. Um, and especially once I had kids and I wasn't in the workforce anymore, then I really started kind of pursuing a lot of those creative, um, avenues that I kind of had set aside a little bit while I was working full-time. Um, but yeah, I had for awhile, I was working in a lot of collage and, um, mixed media versus pure painting. Um, and during that time I was published in several books and magazines, wrote my own mixed media book. Um, kind of, I've always focused on very personal art, though. Um, kind of looking inside myself and trying to bring out what, you know, is inside of me and personal to my life and my, you know, my story. So, even though the medium has changed over the years, I have always sort of, you know, tried to keep that as a constant within my artwork.
Speaker 2 (05:49):
I love that. And actually, I want to come back to what you just said about the medium changing, because I do have a question about that. But in regards to how you've always, like, searched to keep a connection and that feeling in your art, I sensed it the second I saw your work. And so you're, you are definitely doing that. And I noticed right on your homepage of your website, you even write inspirational quotes of -- you say, art should make you feel. And it should reach down and touch you in your soul. Do you even remember this being on your website?
Speaker 1 (06:26):
I came up with it at some point.
Speaker 2 (06:27):
And, and, um, I just immediately, I was like, that is, is what Cory's work is doing -- you are evoking an emotion and a connection. And I, I admire and see that in your portraits. And so you're mainly, what I can tell, is focused on portrait work at the moment in pure paint. And you made this switch from a multimedia expression that you even wrote a book about, and now you're in pure paint and portraits. Can you tell me a little of that transition? What drew you into the pure paint in the first place?
Speaker 1 (07:02):
Yeah, it had to do with a lot of stuff going on in my life at the time. Um, I hadn't been working, uh, I was just raising my children, but my husband lost his job in 2016. And in trying to figure out, okay, what can we do in the meantime until he gets another job, I thought, well, I'll try to pursue a little bit of, you know, trying to make a bit of money through my artwork. Um, so I started just doing some paintings to try and sell and actually strangely enough, this was a period of time for one to two years that I wasn't doing as much personal art. I was more doing art to sell -- that I hoped would sell. Um, I was doing a lot of animal work and, um, more realism. Um, but that's more sellable than say mixed media and some of the more personal stuff I was doing before that. Um, I was at that point when I saw Charla's class, uh, pop-up, start popping up on my Instagram feed and that kind of thing. And I had really been looking for a way to delve more into color, delve more into, you know, I guess more of a fine art kind of, uh, feel. Not that realism isn't a fine art, but I wanted my pieces to be more than just a duplicate of a photograph. Um, and so I took Charla's class and I mean, the rest is history. This is what I've been doing now, ever since I took Bootcamp.
Speaker 2 (08:42):
So yeah. So tell me more about that. How did, uh, Charla's Bold Color Bootcamp actually transform your art? Because you, you've definitely, you know, I can see that you're, you're not, you, haven't only taken Charla's class, but, um, and learned from her, but you've made it into your own style. So you're your own self is really just showing through your work. But how did her class transform you into who you are now? Or help to?
Speaker 1 (09:14):
Uh, you know, before I took Charla's class, I was trying to work with abstract colors in my work. Um, and if you look at my, my older work, you can see that I did a lot of stuff with abstract colors, but I didn't know how to do it, I guess. I was just flying by the seat of my pants, doing what I thought would work. Um, Charla's class sort of gave me the tools so that I knew how to work with those abstract colors and come out with a good product that I liked. And once I understood those key concepts, I was able to then apply it to what I wanted to paint, I guess. You know, I mean, her class obviously is focused on portraiture, which I hadn't been doing much of. I had done some portraiture, but this way I was able to take that portraiture and really run with it. And at the same time where some things were going on in my life that were sad and difficult to deal with, that sort of how this current style that I'm doing now, I guess, developed on top of Charla's techniques.
Speaker 2 (10:28):
Hmm. Wow. So when you were going through the difficult times in your life, this was a therapy.
Speaker 1 (10:34):
Speaker 2 (10:34):
And in a lot of ways, that connection that we were talking about a moment ago is coming through in just your artwork, being you pushing through to hope. There's just so much emotion in there. And not only emotion, but the techniques and, and all that you've learned is just shining through your current body of work. So, Corey, what was your aha moment from taking Charla's Bold Color Bootcamp?
Speaker 1 (11:00):
The biggest aha moment for me was that values are more important than colors. Um, I honestly, like I said, I have a degree in fine arts, um, and a specialty in painting. Um, so I'm trained as a painter, but I was clueless about values. Um, and as soon as I is that clicked, I was like, that's it, that's all you need to know is follow the values, and you're home free. You know, and you can apply whatever sort of techniques on top of that, you know, basic guideline, and it's always gonna work if your values work.
Speaker 2 (11:46):
I love that.
Speaker 1 (11:46):
So, I mean, like it, that was the light bulb moment for me.
Speaker 2 (11:52):
So, when I'm looking your work, Corey, I'm seeing that in, in some ways your colors are muted and subdued, and then you bring layers of bold color on top. There's almost a monochromatic, real, um, subtle feel. Do -- now, keeping in mind, I haven't taken your class in Bold School, so I don't know your secret sauce, um, but is there a secret sauce?
Speaker 1 (12:20):
I don't know my secret sauce, either.
Speaker 2 (12:20):
Is there an approach that you have where you, you purposely keep it subtle, and then surprise everyone with some bold brushstrokes and moves? Is that something intentional?
Speaker 1 (12:31):
I love color combinations, and I've always paid attention -- way before taking this course I had a Pinterest board that was color combinations I like. And I love a somewhat neutralized palette with pops of an unexpected color. Um, that's always what I gravitate towards. Um, so I think just naturally I like those muted colors. I like muted purples and muted greens, but I think having just these little elements of a brighter color mixed in there just is really pleasing and, um, creates a bit of surprise, I guess, um, in the piece. I'm actually working on or beginning to work on another course and I've chosen a palette that I'm sort of dragging my feet on doing it because the palette I've chosen isn't as neutral as other pallets I've done. And I even sent an email to Charla and said, I don't know, I'm kind of scared I'm not going to be able to make this pallet work because it is a little bit brighter in color than what I usually work with. And that's kind of scaring me. So we'll see, I guess if I'm able to make it work.
Speaker 2 (13:47):
Well, being scared and nervous is a good thing. And Charla just told me that yesterday. So, um, I think you can do it, I believe in you, and I'm excited to see your...
Speaker 1 (13:57):
Yeah, I'm crossing my fingers.
Speaker 2 (13:57):
Yeah. I'm excited to see your, your new course come out there on Bold School. Um, so, so what does being a bold artist mean to you, Corey?
Speaker 1 (14:09):
Um, I guess it's just... Let's think about how I could word it. It is using your brushstrokes, and your colors, and the way that you paint to create art that isn't just a photo. Um, it's being creative with how you're applying your paint. Um, reaching inside yourself if you're able to do that and letting whatever's inside, come out onto that canvas. Because, that's bolder than doing a realistic painting. And again, I don't have anything against realism. I've done it in the past, but I don't feel like there's a lot of boldness in realism because you're following a photo. And so I guess the being bold comes out in the way you'd use those brush strokes, the way you use those unexpected colors, um, the way you treat the subject, um, on the canvas versus how it looks in the photo. I mean, for the most part, I'm working from a photo when I'm doing this kind of stuff. But, the way I'm treating it is much bolder than the photo itself looks.
Speaker 2 (15:34):
What I'm hearing when you, when you describe that, what it means to be a bold artist, as I'm almost hearing the word vulnerability. Taking yourself past the photo and being vulnerable to, um, abstract it and apply your own, you know, soul and spirit.
Speaker 1 (15:53):
To interpret it in the way that, you know, you see it.
Speaker 2 (15:56):
Yeah. And it's interesting because you wouldn't necessarily think of the word bold and vulnerability going together and yet they, they do.
Speaker 1 (16:06):
Yeah. Well, and I think that it's a common misconception conception within the school or within people who are looking at this school that bold color is...you have to have really bright saturated colors, and that's what bold color is. Um, at one point I think I said bold color, isn't using bright, bold colors. It's using any colors boldly. And so, you know, neutral colors, uh, you know, it doesn't have to be bright, bright, saturated colors. It can be any color that you're using in a bold manner.
Speaker 2 (16:43):
And that bold manner can come through the way you apply it, the movement of your body with the brush, the placement, the, you know, where you add contrast, and the values, there's so much to being bold with color.
Speaker 1 (16:59):
Right? Exactly. Yes.
Speaker 2 (17:01):
Yes. If you can share with us a little bit about your palette and how you approach color as you're starting your pieces,
Speaker 1 (17:08):
You know, I do it honestly different every time. Um, if I have an old palettte that is left over from another painting, quite often, I will work with what's left on my palette. Maybe add a few other colors as I am working. When I am working from a fresh, clean palette, because I don't have anything left over I do a lot of searching around or looking at Pinterest and Instagram and saving, uh, paintings that I am attracted to for one reason or another, maybe the subject, maybe the brush strokes, maybe the color palette. And so I, a lot of times take inspiration from other pieces. Uh, and it's not necessarily saying I'm going to, you know, duplicate every single color that this person uses, but okay, they used a lot of complimentary reds and greens that work really well together with a splash of, you know, yellow or whatever.
Speaker 1 (18:09):
And so, I'll use that as a basis to start out. And, quite often as I'm working -- this is what always happens to me -- if I ever try to borrow a palettefrom another painting, I start out using that palette. And as I'm working, I'm just like, this doesn't feel like me, this doesn't feel right. And so invariably, I'll go in and add more colors until it feels like me. So, but it's a good starting point because it gets you gooing someplace. And then as you're working, the piece will take on a life of its own. And it'll tell you, you know, what you need to add.
Speaker 2 (18:45):
I love that. I love that -- how the peice will speak to you and lead you. So, Corey, what would you say your boldest move that you've made as an artist would be?
Speaker 1 (18:58):
Perhaps like really embracing... like we talked about earlier, just very personal art. Um, and it's not necessarily something that happened at one time or another, but throughout the years, I've, I've just really embraced using art as a therapy and as a journal just for my life. Um, and I know a lot of people have a hard time doing that and a lot of people have a hard time figuring out how to connect within themselves in order to bring that out. I know that my, uh, background in art therapy helped that a lot. Um, but when in my collage work that I was doing before this, I was very, you know, involved in using personal imagery and here with my current stuff. I mean, you know, it, it does, we've talked about vulnerability. It takes some vulnerability to put these pieces out that obviously are showing pain and sadness and tears. And so, being okay with putting that out there, I think is a vulnerable, but bold move as an artist,.
Speaker 2 (20:16):
I agree. I agree. Yes. Now, you've spoken vulnerably about, uh, your art being a journey through personal experiences. Is there a personal experience in your life that you are comfortable sharing, that you can, um, encourage other artists with, like through your journey of how, where you started and now what you're doing? If you're comfortable sharing it, is there something that comes to your mind?
Speaker 1 (20:49):
I mean, a lot of my art always has been sort of about my family. Um, when I was doing my earlier mixed media stuff, I kept really kind of elaborate artistic journals about my kids, about struggles I had with being a mother. Um, I had a hard time breastfeeding one of my children. And so I did a journal page about that. Um, now these days I'm dealing with a lot of difficulties, uh, within our family. One of my sons is dealing with some mental illness and, um, it's, it's very hard, and it's affecting the entire family as we kind of struggle through this. And so, that's where a lot of the sadness in my pieces comes from. And, you know, I always worry a bit that it's going to look as though I'm kind of, uh, I don't know, uh, what's the word sort of using that as a vehicle to, uh,
Speaker 2 (21:56):
Speaker 1 (21:56):
I can't think of the word. I can't think of the word. What's the word I
Speaker 2 (22:01):
Speaker 1 (22:01):
Um, but anyway, but to me it's so much more about me and my emotions because I can't go through my life looking like this and expressing these kinds of emotions, you know, all day long. And so, me having to hold a lot of that in, it's nice to be able to at least illustrate it in my artwork because that means it's there, but I, you know, it's there in a beautiful way. And maybe I am kind of, uh, embracing that emotion and that -- the beauty in that emotion, even though it's, you know, pain and sadness is not necessarily beautiful, but I'm making it beautiful. In a sense.
Speaker 2 (22:50):
Yes. Thank you for sharing that with us. And I think that just hearing a piece of your personal story and how your art is able to release the emotions of what you're going through with your family, I think it's going to really touch and encourage our listeners. And particularly, I do know that a lot of your students and the ones that you've mentored through Bold School will be listening. And it's also very nice for them to connect with you and know a little bit more about Corey Moortgat. So, thank you. Thank you for sharing that. Have you noticed, uh, just switching gears here a little, have you noticed, uh, anything that the beginners that you mentor in Bold School -- because you have all this experience online teaching and growing artists from, you know, beginner to advancing them -- have noticed a particular theme of struggle, uh, in the beginner that you would like to speak into today?
Speaker 1 (23:53):
Sure. Um, uh, recently, uh, uh, we did an interview that's on the, um, the blog. Um, and one of the questions was, you know, what's your best advice. And for me, it's paint what you see, not what you think you see. Our, our brains do so much, you know, sort of reworking in our, in our sight, what an image looks like. I mean, and I go into this a bit more in my, in a class that's coming up about eyes. Um, you have to break things down into shapes, and values, and colors, and forget that you're painting an eye, or hair, or whatever it is. People have a really hard time, I think, not painting what they think they're painting. you know what not painting, oh, it's a face, so the two eyes go here, the nose goes here. Look at that image as a collection of forms, and values, and lines, and forget that you're painting a face. Um, because your brain will play tricks on you. So, pay attention to what you actually see, not what your brain is thinking that you see.
Speaker 2 (25:15):
Oh, that is such valuable advice. I love it. And I love the reminder. I have heard it before, and Charla does teach that in her classes, as well. Which by the way, I've, I've been, um, doing the elephant class. I call it the elephant class, but it is Painting the Wild in Bold School.
Speaker 1 (25:31):
I haven't even done that one yet.
Speaker 2 (25:33):
Oh yes. So, um, so yeah, no, that's an excellent reminder and something that I think we need all need to come back to remembering when we're being jammed, because, so...
Speaker 1 (25:44):
Even if you're aware that that's what you're doing, I mean, even a professional artist, you, you have to be aware that your brain's doing that, and so you have to fight it. It's, you know, it's a fight because your brain wants to tell you that this is what it looks like, even though it doesn't look like that.
Speaker 2 (26:01):
Hmm, yeah. So, um, is there a specific struggle that you see beginners having with the actual techniques? Whether that's, how they're applying paint, or how they're mixing and, you know, is there something that could...a little tip that could help a beginner just get past?
Speaker 1 (26:22):
Yeah, I mean, I think a lot of people, well, it kind of depends on what their background is. A lot of people come from a more realism background, and so they have a really hard time not blending because they're so used to blending. Um, but what I see quite often is people use a bit too much paint on their brush. I mean, you really don't need much paint on your brush at all to get this kind of dry brush technique. Um, and if any members are in our Bold School or in our Bootcamp Facebook group, I did a tutorial there at one point about how to, you know, get that paint on your paint brush and do the, uh, dry brushing techniques because too much paint is going to want to blend. It's going to want to mix with the other paints. Now, you mentioned earlier that I've kind of taken Charla's, you know, techniques and sort of transformed them into my own. I tend to use wetter paint. And so sometimes I feel as though, you know, I'm not necessarily teaching what I do. But, but I know that people who are looking for Charla's, you know, look need to pay attention to how wet that paint is because you're not going to get that dry brush, nice, layered look, um, with too much paint on your paint brush.
Speaker 2 (27:41):
This episode of the Bold Artist podcast will continue next week with more from our guest artist, Corey Moortgat. If you're interested in learning from Corey on bold school.com, just hop onto the website and check out her Expressive Portrait series. You will find great value learning there from Corey and all the instructors of Bold School. So, go to the website and check that out. Meanwhile, thank you for being here on the Bold Artist podcast. Whether you're watching on YouTube, on the Bold School channel, or on a podcast app, we're on Google, Apple, and Spotify, you can find us there under the Bold Artist podcast. Hit follow. Hit subscribe. Leave us a comment or review. We're so glad you're here. See you next week. And in the meantime, keep creating.
Speaker 4 (28:51):