Introducing a new feature to tie in with The Beachcomber’s 15th anniversary in August. This issue, the spotlight shines on our returning cover artist Robin Wiesneth. Please forward potential “15 Questions for…” subjects to firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Where do you currently call home?
Sandestin and a motor home that my husband and I use to travel around the country in search of inspiration for my next great painting or children’s book.
2. How long have you been an artist?
Forever. I once limited my artwork to graceful computer code. Around 2010, I expanded to drawing, painting and, eventually, picture books.
3. What inspires your work?
Funny things, dogs and cats, great music, a good bottle of wine.
4. You’ve been traveling a lot in recent years. What are some of your favorite places you’ve visited?
On the sailboat, lots of places for different reasons. Turkey, for the people and the culture. Scotland, for breathtaking scenery. Just about any beautiful, secluded anchorage anywhere.
On the motor coach last year, Alaska was amazing. The scenery and wildlife through Canada and into Alaska was top notch. Everywhere we went, people were friendly, generous and funny. If Alaska had white beaches, emerald waters, and sunshine most of the time, I’d move there. Unfortunately, there’s no place like home.
5. Tell us about the piece on this issue’s cover.
“Handstand” comes from a new approach I’m trying where I create an abstract painting and then “find” the figure. I try to limit my figures to people, and they’re rarely posing in an orthodox way. Sometimes a dog or a cat can happen as well.
6. Do you paint/draw every day?
Absolutely. Even if it’s only on a napkin at Starbucks, I try to get a few doodles in every day. I also work on a few commissioned pet portraits every month, and I’m passionate about my illustrations for kids’ story and picture books.
7. You’ve written at least one children’s book that we love, Tails of Imagination. Are there any more in the works?
Panda’s Alphabet Adventure is a fun ABC book for the younger crowd which is available now, and I’m currently working on at least five more picture books covering a wide range of topics, including a sequel to Tails of imagination. Some of these will be coming out on Amazon this year.
I have collaborated on a number of books with Angela Yuriko Smith, a great writer who lives in Niceville. We are the author-illustrator team behind the Literary Lizard series, and we’ve also created a Christmas story called “The Christmas Spiders”. We are currently working on the next Lizard book as well as three other original stories which should be out this year and next. Angela shares news about our books on her web site Dandifluff.com
8. Where can we find your books?
You can find all of my current books on my Amazon author page and through a link on my website abrushwithhumor.com. If you want to buy them locally, many of my books are available at Retail Therapy in Santa Rosa Beach.
9. What was the last book you read that you really loved?
It may surprise you, but it was a picture book. Swap is a clever and original story about a young girl who tries to help a ship captain get his boat seaworthy again. It starts with her idea to trade a red button for two tea cups, then two tea cups for some rope, you get the idea. The characters they run into and the swaps they manage to pull off will keep you smiling. I also loved Carl Hiaasen’s Skink, No Surrender. Written more for teens but with plenty of the craziness Hiaasen is famous for.
10. Who are some of your favorite Beachcomberland musicians?
Forrest Williams, I heard him a few nights ago at Local Catch. I never pass up a chance to hear Al Alvarado, and I love any local band that plays at the Village of Baytowne Wharf since it’s in my backyard at Sandestin.
11. What are some of your favorite Beachcomberland places to eat, drink, shop?
Not much of a shopper but I love hanging out anywhere on the water that serves good seafood and beer. I’m partial to the places that have been here a while like Harbor Docks and Dewey Destin.
12. Who are some of your favorite Beachcomberland artists?
All of them. Anyone who has the nerve to create something original and share it with the world gets my support and devoted following. Life can be hard, and without art and music it’s a lot less fun. The Beachcomber deserves a Lifetime Achievement Award for continuing to support local artists as we try to get our message out there.
13. Do you have any advice for aspiring artists?
Do what you love and keep exploring to figure out what that is, it will change. When I first started painting, sunsets and palm trees bored me. Painting dogs and cats, however, really made me happy. That discovery led me to try writing a kids’ book, and now that is my passion. It takes a lot longer to create a book than it does a painting, but what a wonderful ride it is.
14. Where can we see more of your work?
Retail Therapy in Santa Rosa Beach and on my website abrushwihhumor.com and Facebook page of the same name.
15. The Beachcomber’s 15th anniversary is coming up in August. How are you planning to celebrate this momentous occasion?
I took a Beachcomber with me to Munich in the Spring of 2014, so this year I think I will take it along the Pacific Coast Highway and grab some epic Beachcomber snapshots along the way!
- Art Classes & Workshops
- Art Events
- Art Galleries
- Call to Artists
- Nikki Hedrick: 5 Ways You Can Support the Arts
- Robin Wiesneth: My Creative Kickstarts
- Bruce Collier: 10 Things I’d Never Write in a Restaurant Review
- Nikki Hedrick: Misconceptions About Vegetarianism
- Restaurant Guide
- Taco Variations and Cool Stuff to Look at in Santa Rosa Beach
- Where to Spend Your Happy Hours in Beachcomberland
- Aimee Shaffer: My Favorite Animal Events to Emcee
- Nikki Hedrick: 6 Things You Can Do to Make Your Wedding Day Easier
- “Hey!” 5 Musicians Who Inspire Cheryl Jones
- Beachcomberland’s Greatest Hits
- Bobby Tomberlin: My Earl Thomas Conley Top 5
- Drink On It – Blake Shelton’s Favorite Drinking Songs
- Joe Fingas’ Favorite Blues Men and Women
- Live Music
- Nikki Hedrick: How to Become a Concert Photographer
- Woofy Ramone’s 2019 Record Store Day Finds
Aimee Shaffer: My Favorite Animal Events to Emcee
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