Interview with artist Sonja Salinas, who work tells stories about strange worlds and creatures, that speak to the child within.


Interview by Henry Gomez

Q1. What inspired your passion for art and who has been supporting you from the beginning?
I don’t recall, what originally inspired me to draw and paint but I enjoyed it as long as I can remember. My husband has always been my biggest supporter and inspiration to keep going.
Q2. Have you always aspired to be artist, or did you ever dream of following a different path?
I have always dreamt of being an artist, but didn’t think it was an option, because there were always bills to pay and I didn’t have formal training, therefore it took a long time to earn money through art.
Q3. Is there anything you are currently working on that you would like to tell us about?
I am working on a series of small pieces, but I have been thinking about a big portrait of my deceased grandfather for a while now. I happen to have this great photo of him, which really represents his whole being and it would be so great together with a portrait I have done of my grandmother many years ago.
"Boys have feelings too"

Q4. When the public view your work, what would you like them to experience?
You know, in the end, what really drives art, is what the viewer sees in it. Everyone will see something different in your piece, depending on the viewer’s own experiences and that’s the beauty of it.
Q5. What would you say is the public’s most popular piece of yours and why?
I have heard it’s “Boys Have Feelings Too”. I am not sure why, I wonder, if it is the title that speaks to people.
"The Best Time To Plant A Tree"

Q6. What is your own favorite piece and why?
It is a painting of my grandmother. It is very personal to me and I enjoyed painting it a lot.
Q7. What artists inspire you?
I love the work of Paul Barnes, Amy Sol, Audrey Kawasaki, Yosuke Ueno, Kristian Adam, Dilka Nassyrova, Jeremiah Ketner and many, many others.
"Girls have more fun"

Q8. What are the hardships that come with being an artist?
I guess a lack of income is the number one complaint of artists. There are only a few at the top that really become rich of their art.
Q9. What is the greatest thing about working in the your industry?
You meet a lot of cool and interesting people. And you have the opportunity to collaborate with artists who’s work inspires you.
Q10. From your experience in the arts, what advice could you offer people looking to get to succeed in a similar field?
To stick with what you love and not give up, even if you don’t succeed right away.
"Little Soniarisa"
Q11. From your experience so far, what have you found to be most challenging? And how are you dealing with it?
Well, pretty much, what I just answered in one of the previous questions. To not give up and stick with it. Of course it is easier to take on a job and get paid by the hour. As an artist you spend a lot of hours that go unnoticed and that you are not being paid for. So you really have to love it.
Q12. What courses/classes have you taken that you could recommend and why?
I loved all my art history classes. They were like story time to me, and my favourite thing to study for.
Q13. What are you doing to get yourself noticed and make yourself stand out from the many other artists in US and the world?
I am always true to myself and do exactly, what I think works best for me and my art. I never copy other artists’ ideas, this makes my work unique and stand out.
Q14. Share with us your proudest moment in your career so far?
When my baby daughter stairs at on of my paintings and smiles.
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