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(Image: Lori Twiggs)
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Artist of the Week: Lori Twiggs

Seattle might be notorious for niche coffee shops and scenic waterways, but locals know it's also home to an array of people who love to create. This city is chock-full of artists who we love to feature weekly on Seattle Refined! If you have a local artist in mind that you would like to see featured, let us know at hello@seattlerefined.com. And if you're wondering just what constitutes art, that's the beauty of it; it's up to you! See all of our past Artists of the Week in our dedicated section.

Seattle Refined: How long have you been creating? Do you work with other mediums?
Lori Twiggs: I've been creating artwork as long as I can remember, but I started selling it professionally since about 2005 and have been in the Cole Gallery in Edmonds, WA, since 2012. I love rich, opaque color and the occasional thicker, juicy brush marks, and for that reason, artist grade oil paint is my medium of choice. And I prefer the slight bounce of stretched canvas for my studio work.

Can you tell us about your artistic process and how the different stages work into it?
I start with a firm concept in mind. An emotive idea that I want to translate as opposed to just painting "things." I like to cover my canvas with a thin wash of color and, with a paper towel, wipe off my flow of light and where the light meets my subject. From there, I will often block in larger shapes. The detail comes last, picking out only what I need so as to not overplay it. I know I'm finished when I get just the right amount mystery in my shadow and glow of light on my subject to convey my concept.

Tell us about where your inspiration for your art come from?
I'm inspired by the romantic countryside landscape where I live. A quarter-mile down a private, gravel road, our small farm is surrounded by fields, flower gardens and a spectacular view of the Cascades. With only a handful of homes on our road, it's quiet here. It's utter inspiration for romantic, quietly elegant artwork.

Do you have a specific "beat" you like best – nature, food, profiles, etc.?
My focus is primarily on floral still life, but I also love to do the occasional portrait, pet portrait or landscape.

What experiences in your life have affected your art the most?
My father died in 2006, and I believe that experience shaped my artwork more than anything else. I was left to take care of my ailing mother and settle the estate. I felt overwhelmed and incapable of the enormous responsibility left to me. Studio time was my only escape, and my subject matter became less complex and more atmospheric in an attempt to quiet my then chaotic surroundings. I still continue my pursuit of quiet paintings because I like to envelope myself with the inspiration to slow down and remember what's important. I believe it's what draws my collectors to my artwork as well.

Do you have one piece of art that means more to you, or is extremely special to you?
I would be hard-pressed to find just one that had special meaning to me. I become emotionally invested in each piece because they start with an emotional concept. Each piece comes from a place of introspect even if it's a commissioned portrait. If I cant feel it, I cant paint it.

If we want to see more of your work, where should we go to find it?
More of my work can be seen on my website: www.loritwiggs.com.

What is next for you? Anything you're working on right now that you're really excited about?
I'm currently pushing myself to work on larger canvases without adding to the complexity of the subject matter. Filling a larger canvas and keeping the quiet feel is certainly a balancing act. I'm working on a piece now with roses and peonies on a canvas larger than I'm used to. Fueled by the recent loss of a family member, it takes on a distinct feminine quality and, I'm hoping, sentiment.

Lastly, how do you take your coffee? (We ask everyone!)
I like my coffee black and if it's after 6 AM, decaf and with a teaspoon of Coffee Booster.

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