From “The Advice To Artists From Artists” Series of Interviews.
Roopa Dudley is an innovative artist who refers to herself as “an American (Chess) Painter gravitating towards Steampunk Art and Graphic Design”. Her paintings are created with bold compositions and saturated colors. They usually have a story to tell and reflect the artist’s deep interest in dark humor. They appeal to viewers aesthetically as well as intellectually.
Born in Karachi, Pakistan, Roopa Dudley moved to the United States in 1988 and graduated from Florida International University. Her paintings have been exhibited in several galleries throughout the state of Maryland where she lives. She is also a member of the curated Manhattan Arts International Artist Showcase online gallery.
Dudley’s art has been featured in many magazines and art journals including Studio West, Artascent, and Professional Artist, among others. Her painting was featured on the cover of Meat For Tea, an art and literary journal.
I chose her painting “Cryptoknight’s Trophy” for “The Healing Power of ART 2016” juried exhibition and gave her an Award of Excellence. This painting was also selected to be published by Sadie Girl Press.
It is a pleasure to feature her in this interview which is part of a series titled “Advice To Artists From Artists.” Artists and art enthusiasts alike will enjoy viewing her art and reading her answers.
Roopa, what is your definition of art career success?
Career success is not an over-night achievement but rather a gradual process especially for an artist. My definition of art career success is when famous museums start acquiring multiple pieces of my artwork for thousands of dollars especially while I am still alive.
If you mentored younger artists who are beginning their art careers what single most important piece of advice would you offer?
Get your finished paintings photographed professionally along with yourself in your studio and at your exhibit surrounded by your art in the highest resolution possible right from the start because with the blink of an eye the moment is gone forever. It is imperative to capture snapshots of your life. First impression is the last. Great photos can later be used to publish your biography someday or for interviews or portfolio reviews. You must make an investment in getting your work professionally photographed on a regular basis. Once the work is sold, it is impossible to track it down and get it photographed.
What invaluable art business lesson did you learn in the past year that took your career to the next level?
Never underestimate the power of relationships. Forging strong relationships is the key to having a great business and your success as an artist. You never know who will end up loving your art and buying it or blogging about it or presenting you with an opportunity to have a solo exhibit. Get to know people and their interests. Connect with them beyond pleasantry. Be authentic and keep everyone you know updated about your art through emails and newsletters.
Do you have an essential philosophy that guides you in your creative expression?
I do. Paint all that which terrifies you. Paint all that which angers you. Paint all that which inspires you. Paint all that which redeems you. Paint all that which empowers you. And do all that with confidence, artistic integrity and love.
What personality trait do you have that has been most helpful in your art career?
Self-confidence. If I do not like what I paint and believe in my work, in myself and in my abilities as a visionary, then chances are nobody else would either. Accepting myself with warts and all was a hard thing for me to do and being okay with them was even harder. I have manifested enough love and respect for myself to not indulge in self-deprecation. However, I most certainly have learned to laugh at myself from time to time.
What art marketing activity do you put into practice regularly that works most successfully for you?
Having my own website RoopaDudley.com and publishing a newsletter biannually works best for me. In my newsletter I inform my art collectors about my upcoming exhibits, share my latest work and celebrate my noteworthy accomplishments. Furthermore, I blog about my art on my website next to each painting helps potential collectors gain insights to my process which significantly helps me in selling my work.
What career accomplishment are you most proud of and why?
I am most proud to have an art book published for beginner painters called “A Strategic Painter: Mastermind Your Craft”. As a visual artist it was challenging to put my thoughts into words succinctly in a comprehensible manner that even those who have never painted before can appreciate what art making is all about. In short, I wrote the book that I was looking for but never found as an artist and it got some excellent reviews on Amazon and an awesome review in Reader’s Favorite Book Review.
What is your current most important career goal? What steps are you taking to attain it?
My current priority is gaining global recognition. I want to be recognized for my Chess themed art. In order to attain that, I keep my artwork copyright free (anyone can use and share my work without my permission). I also keep myself approachable so when bloggers want to propose an interview, not only do I give them one but I also do my best to make sure that it was every bit their worthwhile.
What article did you most enjoy on this website and what did you learn from it?
The article “What to do when you receive publicity” was a god sent check list. I read it over and over again to keep myself on track because I have been getting a lot of media attention and unless I take the time to document it as it is happening or has happened, it will be forgotten and then something else will come up. “A stitch in time saves nine” has been my approach and keeps me from slacking off.
The most inspiring thing for me in your article “Living An Artful Purpose-Driven Life” were the questions one needs to ask to live a purpose driven life. What I find most interesting is that I have not experienced any of the five forces for whatever reasons. However, having them laid-out there to see that they do exist, I can actively avoid them if they ever do show up.
What famous artist from history would you like to spend a day with and what would you do together?
I would spend time with De Chirico sipping margaritas and having loud, intense, profound, thought-provoking conversations about art in a jargon alien to all. I would seduce him first with my confidence, then my beauty, closely followed by my unnerving genius that the only option left for him would be to surrender or die.
To read Roopa Dudley’s complete answer and the entire article that presents several artists’ answers go to http://www.manhattanarts.com/artists-take-us-on-a-fantasy-day-journey/
Visit Roopa Dudley’s website at www.roopadudley.com
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