“An Early Winter”, 11×14, Oil, Collection of the Artist. This painting has been juried into the 2017 NOAPS Best of America Exhibit.
If you live where it snows, you know this day. The warm light sparkles on the cold snow, the shadows become vivid blues and purples, and the crisp air fills your lungs. The artist here has captured the contrast with beautifully placed colors that alternate warm and cool, subdued and bright. The viewer is brought to the distant hills to investigate the colors behind the trees, and then travels down to the water to catch the light as it peeks around the bend. These are the every day scenes that may slip away unnoticed, but the artist has captured this fleeting moment for us to treasure.
“Atlantic Surf”, 12×16, Oil, Collection of the Artist
Tony D’Amico has long been interested in art. His illustrious career began after college as a technical illustrator for an advertising agency. Later he worked as Manager of Graphics for Pepsi, which then led him to start his own marketing and promotion firm, “Creative Alliance”. He worked with many high-profile companies, including Pepsi, Guinness, Tiffany, and eBay to name a few. Though he was incredibly busy with his business and a growing family, he managed to take time to work on his art with the support of his wife and family.
“Midtown Glory”, 16×14, Oil, Private Collection
His decision to pursue a fine art career full-time came after he sold his business. To make up for what he felt was lost time, he focused on taking workshops with artists whose work he admired. He studied with well-known artists such as Matt Smith, Phil Starke, Randy Sexton, Ray Roberts, Kathy Anderson, David Dunlop and Hodges Soileau. The most influential workshop teacher was Don Demers, whom Tony credits with making “all the difference in my approach to painting.”
“Snow Tracks”, 9×12, Oil, Collection of the Artist
Tony reaches back to masters such as Sargent, Sorolla, Zorn and others for inspiration for his work. Many contemporary masters, such as Richard Schmid, Chris Blossom, T. Allen Lawson and others continue to inspire and influence his technique.
Most of D’Amico’s work is in oil, but he dabbles as well in graphite or pen and ink. He finds that always preparing for a painting is essential. He starts with a thumbnail sketch which helps him work out values and composition. He also works en plein air at least once a week, for painting from life is critical for developing visual memory. Then back in the studio he uses his sketches and plein air studies along with his experience from the scene to create a more developed painting. He also takes photos of the scene to assist with the studio painting, and may compose using several of his photos. In his painting he begins with an undertone of raw umber, and then sketches the scene with paint before working in the color.
Keen observation is an important element in the painting process, but the key, as Tony states, is to “have the passion, dedication and patience to put in the time necessary to improve. Observe, paint, study art books and paint some more….the artistic journey never ends.”
Tony D’Amico will be represented beginning in November by Hughes Gallery in Boca Grande, Florida. He also sells his work through the Salmagundi Club in New York City, and on his website at http://www.tonydamicofineart.com
To view the art accepted into the 2017 NOAPS Best of America Exhibit, visit http://www.noaps.org/exhibitions, Facebook and Instagram (Natoilandacrylicsociety)
By Patricia Tribastone, NOAPS Blog Director