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Born in Groningen , Holland on June 19th 1976

Minerva Academy 1994-1999

From 1999 till now I made and sold many paintings to companies and private collections.

There are also reproductions, cards and calendars of my work every now and then there are added..

www.jasperoostland.com

 

An Interview with Jasper Oostland
by Selin Yurdakul
issue 3 - June 2009

Hi Jasper, can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Where do you live? What's your education background? And when did drawing and painting become important in your life?
I live in Groningen , that is a city in the north of Holland . I work in the attic of our house, where I live with my girlfriend and daughter (she's almost 1 year now). Ten years ago I finished my study at the Art Academy in Groningen . But I've always been drawing and painting since I was a kid.

Can you describe your typical day and what time is it right now as you are answering this question : ) ?
Our daughter wakes us around 6.30/ 7.00. After being a family man and checking email and doing some other computer stuff I'll be in the attic around 9.30. I try to be there as much as possible to get my work done but there are always some short brakes to do other things. Around 17.30 I do the cooking. After our daughter is gone to bed and everything else is done I sometimes do some small tasks like vernishing a painting or organizing my workspace.

Right now it's 17.30 (These questions are something where I will be busy with in a few sessions :)

Where do you get the inspiration from? How do you start a new work? Do you make lots of planning and sketches beforehand or do you just have something in your mind and start drawing? What can you tell us about your creating process?
I'll get my inspiration from a lot of things. Sometimes I have a specific idea and sometimes I'll be looking in all kinds of magazines or on www.flickr.com to get a good idea or to find the exact photo that I can use for my painting. I always come up with something in a few hours or much earlier before the other work is finished. Sometimes I have several unfinished paintings to work on. I start to draw with a soft or colour pencil on the surface of what the painting will be. Sometimes that's a special kind of paper and sometimes it's canvas. I don't start the composition in my sketchbook because then I won't take the job serious enough and won't have the right concentration. Drawing the real thing shows me all the 'problems' that will come to me in the painting. Some parts of the drawing I place at the exact spot at the first time and

some things I'll keep erasing and keep redrawing. For example the legs and feet of ‘Star' have been in at least 7 different places before I was satisfied. At last I clean up the mess with an eraser and redraw/trace the right lines with a dark pencil to get a good view of how the painting will look like and change things if necessary.

I work with acrylic in many thin layers of paint. I always paint the drawing in one colour to get an atmosphere in the painting. Usually orange but a lot of other colours are possible. This colour will stay visible in a few places of the painting, sometimes it completely disappears and sometimes it is easy to see. It depends on how I think the painting should look like during the process. First I apply the dark shadows and then I keep adding light so that the image will get its depths and texture. There are some time-lapse videos on my website where you can see how I create a painting.

Your previous work was very detailed and realistic that I really wouldn't be shocked to see one of your frogs sitting next to me on the bus! Now you've come up with something really different. A new series of paintings of jumping, diving, dancing puffins, with almost no details. What made you look for something new? Could you tell us a bit about this please?
I was drawing some cartoon style toucans and tried to simplify this animal. Then I drew these lines and the puffins were born. I was very enthusiastic about how to give expression to these lines and made them believable animals. I did many experiments with how they should look like and made a lot of works starring them. A lot of them are not on my website and don't hang on expositions, some I threw away and some of them have disappeared under a thick layer of acrylic. It was nice for me to let go all the realistic stuff. I didn't have to do smooth colour transitions in shadows and dust expressions. It's just lines and texture of the painting that I'm working on. But the process is similar to my other work; sometimes it's a lot of erasing and redrawing.

A cat with a bee dress, a philosopher frog in deep thoughts, puffins jumping off a diving board… Your works always tells a story about those very interesting, cute, funny and melancholic characters. Whether they are human-like or not they always have a realistic side of their character that feels very familiar. How do you accomplish this?
Hmmmm. That's a hard question. I always have an idea in my head about how the character should look like but the final painting always is different than what I had in mind when I started it. During the process I'm looking for what works to accomplish the right emotion. My girlfriend sometimes says when she sees me sitting (or doing something else): ‘You look like your frog'

Do you have any artwork that you would never want to sell or give away? If you have, could you tell us about it?
"Tyrannosaurus Rex" is a painting, which I used for the poster and invitations of an exhibition in a gallery. And then I was


sorry that I already hung it there, and I was hoping that nobody would buy it. When the exhibition was over, I was very glad that I could hang it in our house. It's now in a small group of paintings hanging in our living room.

What do you enjoy most about your work?
Creating something and having control on it. (And I can listen to music or radio programmes)

How do you know when a work is finished?
Because I work from dark to lighter colours, it's finished when I have added the lightest parts of the painting. The white on characters or objects are done last (for example the glance in the frogs eye)

Do you have any pet friends at home?
Right now we have one guinea pig left, her friend died a few days ago. I think we'll get a new colleague for her soon

I used to have different types of rodents but my girlfriend likes guinea pigs. I think they're pretty dumb in a nice way.


What do you do when you're not working?

Spending time with my daughter and girlfriend. I'm also a music addict. I like to listen to many different styles. But most of it will fit in the alternative catalogue. One of the best things I found a while ago is Regina Spektor.

Could you tell us about your future projects?
Now I'm working on a painting of 100 x 100 cm . I think it will be called ‘Dr Seuss' (Because the frog wears the hat of ‘The Cat in the Hat' and has the fish in his bowl on his finger). After this I really need to start at some commissioned paintings, some people are waiting pretty long now.


 

 

 

 

 

 

Jasper Oostland

 

Aaron Morgan - Adam Ziskie - Alejandra Mori -
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