Meet the Artist Interview Series - Margaret Thatcher

When did you first realize you wanted to become an artist? Not so much a realization, I don't think there was ever a discussion as to what I might do as an adult. I received a lot of praise from all of my art teachers throughout the years, so it just became my path. As a kid, encouragement you get from an adult can have a great influence on you, it can give you a boost of confidence. I believed them, I thought I was pretty good too!

What type of art do you create? For the last 2.5 years I have been painting abstractly using cold wax and oil. Prior to this I had painted figuratively using pure oil and acrylics.

What inspires your art? Color inspires me. I never use color straight from the tube, mixing and combining hues is stimulating, always exciting. I am also inspired by listening to other artist's stories . I am currently listening to How to See, Looking, Talking and Thinking about art, by David Salle. It's a wonderful listen that explores the work of Salles contemporaries, and friends, who were/are influential 20th century artists.

Do you have any favorite artists? My 3 favorite artists are, and have been for years, Francis Bacon, Francisco Clemente and Jean Michelle Basquait

How do you develop your artistic skills? I paint 5 days a week, I put in the time first and foremost. I am also a member of Cold wax Academy, an online classroom that meets once a week taught by CW experts Jerry McLaughlin and Rebecca Crowell. I also attend week-long workshops from time to time, I will soon be headed back to San Miguel De Allende for a cold wax and oil figurative focused workshop taught by Jerry McLaughlin and bay area figurative artist Melinda Cootsana. As of recently I have been attending live model drop in classes in Palo Alto to keep up my drawing skills.

Which aspect of your medium challenges you the most? Painting with oil and cold wax is mostly done using brayers and squeegees of various sizes. This is a challenge for anyone used to the fine lines or subtle nuances you can achieve using brushes.

How do you deal with the loneliness of being a solo creator? I love being alone. I think this is true for most creatives, unless you are a performance artist. My favorite days are those when I don't leave the house, just roll out of bed and get to work!

What are the highlights of your artistic career? Anytime someone buys one of my paintings because it resonates with them deeply, that's a highlight. To be able to put the time in my studio, to paint 5 days a week with the full support of my family, that's a daily highlight that I am very grateful for.

How do you promote your work and yourself as an artist?

I am on both Instagram and Facebook, and I have had some success selling my art because of the visibility that these platforms afford. I also have a website,, that I can direct people to if they are not interested in social media.

Do you feel you need to have a degree in art to pursue an art career? I have a BFA in painting and drawing but I do not think an art degree is at all necessary to have a successful career. Plenty of great artists are self taught, desire is key.

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