The Piedmont Council of the Artssupports access to and awareness of the arts as an essential part of life in the Charlottesville area. It is a membership based organization open to the general public and specifically to area artists. PCA has begun a series of interviews to highlight certain of their individual artist members. This month we get a q&a with photographer/printmaker Stacey Evans.
Personally, I like this for two reasons: 1) I think it is always good to get a little insight to artists’ backgrounds and motivations straight from the artist; and 2) Stacey is a dear friend who I think the world of. Her story is engaging, and watching her share it through her art makes me feel very lucky.
Here is the interview (or read it directly from the PCA site here):
Where are you from? I was born in Waynesboro, Virginia, my family moved there in the 70s. I grew up in Fishersville on a piece of property with a 180 degree view of the Blue Ridge Mountains and sky. I had a great view through my bedroom window of the seasons changing, the sun rising, the moon, cows and an occasional plane. I lived at the end of a small airport.
What brought you to (or back to, or kept you from leaving) Charlottesville? I spent a few years in Georgia attending art school then working for a newspaper—the heat was too much. I returned to the area with the intention of only staying a summer. Next thing you know I was renting a house with an old friend. Friends, family, and love keep me in the area.
What are your favorite things to do around Charlottesville? This is an interesting question; I’ve lived in Charlottesville for 14 years and my favorite things continue to change. One constant has been walking along the Rivanna River; I like the sound of flowing water, I’m especially glad the dam was removed. I enjoy teaching and taking courses through various continuing education programs. I like to go the Virginia Arts for the BookCenter and make prints. Another favorite is to hop on the train and leave town.
What inspires your creativity? Observation seems to inspire my creativity. Sounds, smells, insects, signs, clouds, humans, anything can send me into a zone and thoughts start processing. I have many ideas but have had to learn which ones to pursue. My current photographic project is Train-Scapes, landscapes from the Amtrak. I started photographing from moving vehicles in 2000 when I first purchased a digital camera. The train has been a natural progression— it catches everything that interests me; bits and pieces of our world passing by. A few prints are on display at the Transit Center downtown.
What do you love most about what you do? Tricky question, today I made a beautiful print so I love printing. Tomorrow the printer might act up and I’ll hate printing. I love to see new things. I love to be in motion if not physically then mentally. I love when the light is right the color is perfect and I am transcended to a new place. I love when it is a grey imperfect day and I capture that misty feeling. I love the combination of digital technology and printmaking. I try to love the emotional roller coaster of life. One day you can be on top of the world because you just had a great sale, the next you question every choice you’ve made.
What are your favorite ways to stay connected with the arts community in Charlottesville? My favorite way is direct contact with artists. I collaborate, have critiques groups, and photograph for artists. The easiest way to stay connected is newsletter subscriptions and blogs, the PCA, VFH, and Hook blog are a few. I am a member of Second Street Gallery, the UVA Art Museum and the VABC. If I’m in town I attend first Fridays and PCA second Wednesday drinks.
Stacey is currently exhibiting her “Trainscapes” in Charlottesville's Downtown Transit Center – very appropriate. For more information take a look at her website.