We had the good fortune of connecting with Lisa Bryson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lisa, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
When your brain, energy and capabilities are geared toward a specific way of thinking, doing and being, and is often contrary to the mainstream, there is really only one direction to go–follow through with what you know and do best. Thriving in life is not always experienced, but taking the path that suited me the best helped me to excel and succeed. The payoff is not always monetary but rather the “overall” fulfillment is achieved. I have to be in a space that supports and ignites creativity, so an artistic career was the answer.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My journey has been tough and hard fought. I am a representational artist (painter) that focuses on the figure, the face and emotion. I am also a mature artist, coming into the art world later in life, so to be taken seriously as a viable, contemporary artist has and remains a constant hurdle. Additionally, painting is often vilified, declared a dead practice and representational work as outmoded, so I have taken on the task of bringing relevancy to both: reviving painting and bringing “the contemporary” into the work. I am inspired by other artists. But my work is unique, true to my voice. In the midst of an artistic career, I have learned to have thick skin, be tough, and brush off the inane. Moreover, putting in the hours is necessary, both studio time as well as the business aspect to be successful. My advice, don’t take on the creative professional life if you’re not willing to work hard, and be ready for the ugly two-letter word, NO; rejection is a big part of the process. Work ethic is paramount as well as nurturing the soul, the inspiration for your work. Through my story and my work, I hope to encourage artists, especially women and underrepresented artists, to “Make”, “Do”, “Be”– don’t let words, actions of others keep you from your truth, your vision, your work, your goals. Create and Inspire!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
During COVID this is a challenge, but when free of a pandemic, the first place I would take them is to my studio at the Arts District in Liberty Station. We would lunch at Solare Ristorante and walk the grounds. But, one can’t pass up Balboa Park, the San Diego Zoo and, of course, the beaches. San Diego is a beautiful city. There is just so much to do in a day.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I give a shoutout to all the female artists, past and present, that have paved the way and continue to open doors for female and underrepresented artists.