Drifter in Repose
1st Place Overall PleinAir Salon
18 x 36 in.
Oil on board
Available at ArtCenter Manatee in Bradenton, FL during OPA Exhibition
Johanne Mangi: The idea for this painting occurred while visiting a friend. Drifter was seeking attention as we were looking at images of her other dogs. He eventually got bored and climbed onto a couch beneath a window. I literally couldn’t take my eyes off him. The light was amazing and he had a dreamy quality. I couldn’t wait to get home to paint a small study while the vision remained vivid. I had reference photos but they were so deceiving. I knew I could make a good painting from them but something would be missing. Fortunately, he lives nearby, and through frequent visits I was able to observe the all-important nuances. I am always stunned by the narrowness of a Borzoi’s muzzle and of course, their gracefulness. Portraiture for me is more than a likeness. It means capturing whatever elusive quality exists for that particular animal.
In a short span of time this painting has not only been recognized by the PleinAir Salon by winning 1st Place Overall but is headed to Oil Painters of America’s Eastern Regional Exhibition opening September 28.
Art has always hovered in and out of my life. Since I can remember, I tried to draw anything and everything. When I was about 7 years old there was an Easter Bunny Coloring Contest through a local business where I spent a concentrated amount of time on my submission. The winner’s work was a mere scribble! I admit I was insulted when my effort wasn’t recognized. This would be my first lesson in being judged.
College was filled with more practical courses yet I somehow managed to include art. After graduation I explored art off and on while I pursued more traditional methods to support myself. I never believed I could be a full-time artist, but I do know the power of a dream. I’m living proof.
Dogs and horses have always been a passion. I’ve had several of each throughout my life. My dogs have always been an inspiration, and since I am an avid proponent of painting from life, I heartily use them as reference. Whenever I get stuck, I don’t have to look very far for help. I paint best when I incorporate sessions from life. This could be in my extensive gardens, figure models, or portraits with my Studio Group, Third Floor Studio.
Portrait work interests me because I enjoy the challenge of intuitively interpreting my subject. In pursuit of developing this skill further, I am devoting more time to painting for myself.
Any advancement I’ve achieved has been through my association with painting groups, some well-known, some not. In 2008 I pursued drawing in a serious manner, and by 2010 jumped into painting. Immersive workshops have been a wonderful resource in my ongoing education as well as the generous support of accomplished artists. The never-ending process attracts me. I tell my students to embrace this process as the glory is short lived.
My work is collected widely here in the States as well as Internationally, gathering awards along the way. It’s a wonderful feeling, yet I believe you are only as good as your next painting! I’ve been featured in many magazines, and I am a regular Faculty Member for the PleinAir Convention and Expo as well as other high profile events.
Organizations: Oil Painters of America, Portrait Society of America, American Impressionist Society, Salmagundi Club.
Art Ambassador for Royal Talens (Rembrandt brand)
West Wind Fine Art
To see more of Johanne’s work, visit www.johannemangi.com