Fusion Art is pleased to feature award-winning artist, Kathy Brady, in its “A Day in the Life” series. In this series of Artist Showcases, the gallery reveals the “typical” day of many of its award-winning artists.
Kathy is an award-winning photographer based in New York, USA. She has won numerous awards in Fusion Art’s online art competitions as well as been featured in the gallery’s Artist Spotlight solo art series.
Below please find, in Kathy’s own words, the answers to 12 questions about her, her art and her “typical” day as she gives us a glimpse into her artistic life.
How do you start your day?
I start my day by wishing I were a morning person. I am not, unfortunately, and it is always a struggle to get going and join the rest of the world. Once I am up, I check on my mother, feed my pets and get ready to commute to work. I admire those that work solely on their craft but know it can be a challenge to make ends meet. I work a regular job which affords me the ability to enjoy my photography during my time off. There are perks and drawbacks to each lifestyle choice, of course, but this is how I am living right now.
How many days a week do you work on your art?
Mentally – 7 days a week; in actuality - it depends on what I have going on. In the past I was constantly taking pictures of everything out there. The past few years, however, have been more challenging but this has forced me to go with quality more and quantity less. Not a bad thing! When I can’t get out and about, I look for places nearby to check out next chance I get. I am also broadening my horizons in that I am taking more photos that are not of animals but still enjoying it.
Do you have a home studio, or do you go to an outside studio to work? Which do you prefer and why?
I love being outside and that is where I take most of my photos. I have my equipment inside which includes my laptop in addition to my cameras, lenses, and accessories. I much prefer being outside shooting life than being inside on a computer, but both aspects are part of the art. I feel alive and healthy outdoors and my nature cravings get filled. When I do not have the opportunity to get out, I wilt like a plant not watered.
What kind of art do you create?
I capture living creatures, scenes, and objects in everyday life via photography. I think of photos as a piece of time frozen and recorded forever, never again to be recreated. The planet we live on is absolutely, astoundingly amazing and I try to take every bit of it in every chance I get. Animals are my deepest love. When I can get close to a wild creature without frightening it that is the best compliment I can get. Looking into an animal’s eyes reflect who we are. I have a special affinity towards wolves which are truly misunderstood and vilified. I hope my photos of them show the beautiful, soulful, emotional creatures they really are.
Walk us through your typical day?
Each day is different, naturally, but for the most part I care for those depending on me at home, then go to my regular job at an investment firm. I am fortunate that I have a steady and interesting job, work with great people, and, while I have an hour commute each way, I drive through some natural areas including woods, ponds, and reservoirs. It beats the decades I spent taking the NYC subway downtown to an office! I always have a camera with me just in case something worthwhile presents itself. I have taken some nice photos on my ride to/from work and while on lunchtime walks in the local park. The beauty of nature is that it is everywhere.
What has been your biggest challenge so far?
I would say my biggest challenge right now revolves around health. Having spent a considerable amount of time in the woods, I got chronic Lyme which is a bear. I can no longer trek into the forest as carefree as I once did, and I miss it so much! I also made the difficult decision to sell all my Canon equipment and instead go with a lighter, easier option – a Fuji mirrorless camera. This was very heartbreaking to me as so many memories were tied to my Canon arsenal, but Lyme arthritis was making it harder, so I chose to continue doing what I love in a different way. It all worked out and I now love my new Fuji toys. The past couple of years have also been extremely challenging in caring for sick, elderly family members. I try to balance everything, but something always suffers and the care giving cannot ever be the thing that is left to the wayside. Updating my website has taken a back seat and I am trying now to get this resolved. I sometimes miss artist calls on art websites but do my best to keep up. Sometimes life happens, and you just have to roll with it. I cannot spend as much time gallivanting around anymore, so I have been checking out more local venues and places with surprising results. Our own backyards can be exciting if we really look. Sometimes hurdles put us on other paths we might not have discovered otherwise. The secret to this life is adapting!
What do you enjoy most about being an artist?
I never considered myself an artist until I entered a local photo contest and that lit a spark in me. It gave me a boost of confidence and I have been enjoying feeling that creative energy inside of me ever since. I am absolutely passionate about photography and look at everything in life though a lens. Having spent decades in corporate America shackled to a desk, I experience such a sense of freedom grabbing my camera and getting out there to see all the world has to offer.
What do you enjoy the least?
I would say not having more time to devote to something I could do 24 x 7 and never get tired of. There is nothing I enjoy more than being out in nature and capturing the amazing sights and creatures in this world. Nothing. On the flip side, I have responsibilities and priorities and know what is most important and must come first – I will never have regrets doing what is right.
Do you have any mentors?
I like to think of my friends, who have been nothing but encouraging, and kind gallery owners who have offered advice as mentors.
Is the artistic life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?
When you have a camera in hand - you have a purpose and do not feel self-conscience about being alone. I am lucky in that I am equally comfortable around people as I am being by myself. I do not ever feel lonely and I know that is truly a blessing.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
My dad always said, “Do the right thing, no matter what the cost.” This mantra has guided me in difficult moments. I have found that if you remain true to yourself, it does not matter what you lose, because you keep what is most valuable.
What inspires you?
Everything! I love life! I have been so blessed and have seen many amazing sights. I plan on getting out there as much as possible and seeing all there is out there to enjoy! I might not be able to do this much right now but where there is a will, there is a way and I certainly have the will.
Thank you, Kathy, for sharing a peek into your life as an artist!
Below are 4 of Kathy’s award winning pieces. To learn more about Kathy and see more of her work please visit her website.
Fusion Art, LLC
Santa Fe, NM