Deana Evstefeeva was born in Russia. She attended Khabarovsk Art School for Children where her artistic roots began at the age of six. Guild Magazine recently had the pleasure of interviewing her and learning more about her artistic background.
“My career started when I was 6 years old when I was placed in an art school. I was told that pencils and crayons were the only things that would settle me down. This is the main reason why my mother placed me in art school. I draw on the walls of the house and ran out of space. Later, I had the privilege to attend Khabarovsk Regional College of Arts in Russia. I attended numerous exhibitions in Russia, completed some paintings for individuals in Australia, and continued to work on paintings here in America where I continue to grow my presence in the art community.”
When asking her what inspires her? She stated, “Life can be a journey of happiness and pain. Because of this, my inner inspiration is to see positive growth from the people who set their eyes on my paintings. I want to touch people’s lives in a positive way and remind them that there is real beauty in the world.” She continued ” Motivation comes easily to me because art is an integral part of who I am as a limb to the body. My interest is never ending because ideas will always flow into my mind.”
Deanna discusses were she has felt discouraged and how it affected her creativity. “On many occasions, different people have approached me to ask me why I create works of art instead of working a job with more security and one that is more reliable. When approached with this question, I make it a point to not let it affect my love for the arts. It does not inhibit my creativity. I am genuine to myself in that it is a natural ability and I have genuine love for creating artistic objects. I understand why I have been drawn to artistic pursuits, and I am confident in how I approach my success in the art industry.”
Artists sometimes have a difficult time letting go of an art piece. Deanna has a clear vision of what she is created stating, “I can definitely see the finished product before I start. There is a lot of preparation that occurs before working on the art piece itself. The picture in my mind helps me organize myself in the preparation phase. For example, some things that I need to do in the beginning phases are to take a lot of pictures, to get the right lighting, and lots of sketching.”
Deanna believes in her work and does not worry about how people may perceive her artwork when creating it. “Judgment by others does not concern me or I do not worry about how my creativity is perceived. There are different perceptions, interests, and styles. Therefore, I am aware that everyone will not like my art. Knowing this, I am able to continue doing what I love to do regardless of other’s judgment or perception.”
Our conversation directs to when she has doubted herself and what has helped her not too. “Like everyone, I have doubted myself at one point or another. But with every doubt, I make it an opportunity to grow. For example, if I question a particular skill, whether big or small, I make it a mission to refine that skill. There are many people with different tastes and if someone does not like my art I do not take it personally. As I like to say, “You cannot be everyone’s cup of tea.” She laughs and continues. “There are a handful of people that have helped me persevere and not quit. I’d like to acknowledge my sister who has been my rock and savior since I began as an artist. She has always been an inspiration and continues to support me. Additionally, I’d like to acknowledge my mother who noticed my interest in art and allowed me to explore and develop my art skills on the walls of the house. She encouraged my art abilities by enrolling me into art school as a child. I’d like to acknowledge my husband, who continues to support me in my endeavors and goals. Finally, one other person who keeps me going is my son. Every time I look at his face I realize I cannot quit. I know I must be a strong role model for him to follow his passion and not quit when his endeavors begin.” Deanna believes in her work and does not worry about how people may perceive her artwork when creating it.”
As our interview comes to an end she leaves us with some positive thoughts. “There have been achievements I have received in the various continents that I have traveled to or lived in. Right now, I am proud to say that one of my biggest achievements and one of my many goals was to have been entered and be accepted into NYC markets. In fact, it is happening faster than I thought and I am looking forward to what comes next.” She tells us. “I would encourage young artists to never give up and never surrender to criticism no matter how difficult it gets. You can learn from criticism even though it is hard to accept. There is always a lesson to be learned. Remember, constructive criticism is meant to push you forward not condemn you. There are always valid points in every comment.” Deanna concludes. “I want my illustrations to deliver positive thoughts and emotions. I desire for people to remember me as the artist that can deliver and make them feel like they are part of the painting because of techniques I use to bring realism. I want to give people a sense of being part of the piece that they are standing in front. My hope is to provide a sense of being somewhere else while being enveloped into the painting.” – GM