Artist of the Month - Sauson Luongo
Oil painting by Sauson Luongo
“My creative journey began 30 years ago. I walked into a local chocolate shop and complimented the owner on some beautifully hand painted pots. She thanked me and told me that her mother painted the pots and introduced me to her as she happened to be in the store at the time. Her mom told me she could teach me if I was interested. Being a shy person, I told her I couldn’t even draw so probably wouldn’t be a successful painter. She invited me to join her paint class, saying if I didn’t see results, she would not charge me. And the rest is history.
Initially I began painting exclusively with oils. I would put a bowl of fruit on a table or some flowers in a vase and paint what I saw. I unexpectedly discovered that I was easily able to make simple objects come to life on a canvas. I have always had an affinity for vibrant colors, specifically shades of blue, so I seemed to incorporate them in many of my paintings. What I consider to be my first “real” painting was a waterscape of Greece using a photograph I had taken when my husband & I vacationed there.
As I continued painting, I experimented with other mediums such as acrylics, pastels, and watercolors. After roughly a decade as a student in my first art class, my teacher decided to move to another state. I knew that I did not want to stop painting just because she was leaving. A peer in my class mentioned another teacher that we might try - and try we did. Our new teacher became more of an artistic mentor to me than just an art teacher. She & her husband (who had since passed) were so incredibly talented and such an inspiration to me. She pushed me beyond what I thought were my limits and made me want to be a better artist.
As I continued to mature in my compositions, my new teacher encouraged me to start drawing to really perfect my ability to paint in perspective and generally hone my craft. This was a completely new challenge for me, and it invigorated me as an artist at just the right time. Using a pencil, I reverted to my basic beginnings, sketching household objects and hardwood manikins. I quickly discovered that my teacher’s advice about drawing and how it would improve my paintings was, of course, spot on.
Today, over 30 years after my first art class, I continue to find solace, tranquility, and peace in the process of painting. The moral of my personal story is: always compliment something that catches your eye - you never know where a simple conversation might lead.”