MAGAZINE

January 25th, 2016
Jesse Gussow

Andrea Benge’s work shows her subject's vulnerabilities, strengths and emotions. This is strong, powerful, and yet it is also quite beautiful. Benge's eyes display emotion and the viewer is drawn into them at first glance.


Where are you from?

I’m from Orange County, California.

 

How did you first start your artistic journey?

I originally started as a tattooing apprentice, but as soon as I picked up a paintbrush that changed everything for me.

 

What do you see in your work?

I see myself, my journey. I see the influences of growing up in California, the glamour of all that. But also the darker underside, what's underneath, not just the superficial.

 

I love the emotion that you convey in your subject's eyes. What is the hardest thing to paint/draw?

Thanks :D The eyes are always what I start with, if I don’t get the eyes right the emotion doesn’t set in for me. Also when I crop the eyes or keep them closed it becomes very significant.

 

Which mediums do you work with mostly? Which would you like to be more proficient at?

I work very mixed media, always switching. But I keep coming back to watercolor and colored pencil; they tend to be what I’ve been sticking with. I think that again comes from my background in tattooing.

 

How has your life impacted your artwork?

I think that life no matter what will always seep into the artwork, it's sometimes recognizing and acknowledging it that is harder to do.

 

From start to finish what is your process for creating a piece?

I usually come up with an idea, start playing around with compositions in Photoshop, then start on the piece. I use washes and layers and then it starts to take on its own life. I think finishing, or letting it go, is the hardest part for me.

 

If you could come back as any type of animal what would it be, and why?

A unicorn or a dragon because that's magic.

 

Do you listen to music while you are creating? What do you listen to, if so, and what impact does music have on your work?

Yes, I listen to really terrible music (nobody seems to like my music except me :D). Mostly post-hardcore punk music, the lyrics kind of spark the ideas, or the “hooks” that get me started.

 

Fudgee-O or Oreo Cookies? Or something else entirely different?

Brownies!

Also take a look at her personal website and give her a follow on Instagram and Facebook.

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