Today we’d like to introduce you to Bobbie Rich.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I was originally drawn to the West Coast with the University of Southern California and promises of learning from accomplished artists, art and academic scholarships and the LA art scene.  Over a decade later, my art is featured in private collections in London, Florence, Kuwait, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver and more. Whoop! Whoop! I also teach art novice to professional level from literally ages 1-100… so far! And I have a strong belief in donating time and finances. I very much enjoy working with various nonprofits including, but not limited to: Resonate LA, Community Corp of Santa Monica and Harvest Home. The immense joy I glean from teaching and outreach beautifully balances the often-challenging world of being a professional artist.

Please tell us about your art.
Painting, for me, is a meditative escape from the constant whirl of life. It is very rewarding to stand back and see what I create. I’m passionate about color and texture and as cliché as it sounds making the world a more beautiful place… not only with art, but with laughter, generosity of time and finances, and teaching art.
My last solo show was titled “Wanderlust.” Traveling and a desire to continue learning and experiencing new things inspires much of my work. I paint in many different styles but tend to focus on 3 bodies of work.

I initially gained inspiration for my “People Watching” series working in advertising.  I was entranced yet repelled by the glossy images in magazines.  I created blind contour paintings, transforming sterile, perfect images into whimsical satire.  People watching is one of my favorite pastimes and its namesake series has expanded to include travel, child and angel portraits.

My metal leaf series “Eden” illustrates the impeccable beauty, yet fragility of nature.  My own wanderlust travel photography inspires the oil painted creatures; ranging from koi (Taiwan) to leopards (Botswana) to hummingbirds (my Santa Monica art studio).  Each precious creature thrives in an atmosphere of metal leaf.  The gold, bronze, silver glimmer decays to reveal layered acrylic and graffiti of an ever-impending industrialized world.

I’ve always been passionate about water. I began swimming before I could walk and have been a fish ever since. Walking out to the ocean is a magnificent getaway. The ocean’s immensity instantly centers me. It was only a matter of time before the sea found its way to my canvas. Canvases in my “Ocean” series are built up with layers of molding paste, acrylic and oil. They are created very intuitively, relying on memory and improvisation. I have even painting waves live at The Fairmont Miramar and Highways Performance Space, 18th Street Art Center.

Do you have any advice for other artists? Any lessons you wished you learned earlier?
Being an artist is not an easy career path. My advice to aspiring professional artists is to make sure you are truly passionate about art. That being said, passion alone is rarely enough to be a financially viable artist. Most successful artists conduct themselves in a professional manner and are business savvy. My experience being an artist is that it’s a juggling act of accounting, marketing, teaching, learning and creating. I studied Fine Art and Advertising at USC. I wish I had added in a Business degree too!

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
My website www.BobbieRich.com showcases all my available art, latest shows, commissions, teaching and more! I also mail out a once monthly newsletter that highlights my latest and greatest. Please email Artist@BobbieRich.com if you would like to subscribe or inquire about art pricing, lessons, parties, live painting, etc. I ship art everywhere and teach from Calabasas to Long Beach.

Currently I have 5 large paintings in a group show for FOLA (nonprofit supporting art education) at Lido Ristorante in Manhattan Beach. I paint live on stage at Resonate LA at least 1 Sunday a month. A couple of my metal leaf works are also showcased at The Hangar in West LA.  And I am slowly filling in my portfolio on Saatchi Art’s website.

If you would like to support my nonprofit endeavors, tax deductible donations may be made online at Resonate.Church – please be sure to direct your donation to Artist-in-Residence.

“Wanderlust,” A Travel Inspired Exhibition!

Exploring the world has inspired countless creative people throughout the ages. Artist Bobbie Rich has joined the ranks of these travelers…turning inspiration into art with her latest exhibition titled “Wanderlust.” On Sunday, July 30, Upper West will feature over twenty new works by Rich. The solo exhibition will include paintings depicting images of people, waves, and animals inspired by Rich’s recent travel experiences.

“Painting is a meditative escape from the constant whirl of life,” said Rich. “It is very rewarding for me to stand back and see what I create. I’m passionate about color and texture and as cliché as it sounds…making the world a more beautiful place…not only with art, but with laughter, generosity of time and finances, and of course teaching.” Rich went on to say that meeting new people from around the world has been an extraordinary experience.

She recently visited Botswana, Africa. “I am privileged to have a wildlife conservationist sister who affords me unmatchable travel experiences. She lived in ‘Dog Camp’ in the Botswanan bush off and on for a few years.” Rich explained that the leopard pictured in one of her works titled Panthera was radio-collared so the team could track the animal to learn more about its behavior and whereabouts. They were able to follow the leopard for an extended stretch, which afforded the artist many great photo opportunities.

“Leopards are incredibly beautiful up close and camouflaged beyond what I could have ever imagined,” said Rich. “We were within several yards of the leopard initially and knew it was present from the antennae, but circled around and around because it was so hard to find him in the grass…Remarkable!”

She described how moved she was…weeping at the first sight of a lion. “The unending landscape and all of God’s majestic creatures grazing together with no boundaries is awe-inspiring. I’ve never seen or experienced anything as magnificent as Botswana.”

Prior to the Botswana trip, she visited Taiwan. A family friend and Taiwanese local helped to arrange a once-in-a-lifetime trip. “Mrs. Huang was able to introduce us to a wide range of Taiwanese people through her siblings. One sister is a farmer, one brother is a businessman, and another brother is a monk.”

Rich’s exhibition will feature a painting of the monk who made a huge impression on the artist. A talented calligrapher, he created a banner that reads “Abundant Love,” which hangs prominently in Rich’s studio. “The people of Taiwan were extremely accommodating, gracious and kind,” said Rich. “It was intriguing to see the variety of land and culture in their beautiful nation.”

Another work to be exhibited in “Wanderlust” is Taipei. It consists of an abstract acrylic underpainting with bronze metal leaf and impasto oil painted koi fish. “The painting was inspired by a trip to the National Palace Museum in Taipei, Taiwan. I took countless photos of the exterior koi ponds after being dazzled by the art collection within the museum walls.”

Visit Upper West Restaurant on Sunday, July 30, 2017 from 4-7pm; to view the art of Bobbie Rich. “Wanderlust” will transport you to another part of the world. Upper West is located at 3321 Pico Boulevard, Santa Monica, 90404; The exhibition will run through October 2017; http://www.theupperwest.com/ Visit http://www.bobbierich.com to find out more about the art of Bobbie Rich.