"When Jim would get off work, I'd have dinner on the table and the house mostly tidy, then I'd hand him a kid and drive off to go paint," she said.
Her mobile studio is built on the back of a 1985 Land Cruiser, where she can balance large canvases in the back. With the really big paintings, like six feet by six feet, Starling likes the feeling of being able to walk into the scene, and almost smell what it's like inside. Recently, old trucks and ravens are catching her fancy among the rugged rocky landscapes of
Starling agreed to an interview with the
Q: When you think of the West, what do you visualize?
A: The openness of the country, and the lack of people. Old trucks remind me of the West. It's so dry and there's no salt on the roads and no salt in the air, so they can last forever, until the dry grass grows over them.
Q: What's your favorite moment while painting?
A: There's a point after the conception of the idea, when you're just knocking it in and masking out the canvas before there's any detail. That's when you can tell, okay, I've got something I can work with.
Q: What do you do in the middle of a painting when you can tell the original idea just isn't working?
A: Definitely, I change it. At that point, you can still do things to fix it. You can scrape paint off, rub something out, change it over here, or over there.
Q: What's the farthest you've traveled to paint a particular scene?
A: Well, I've been to
Q: Why is it important for you to work in plein aire?
A: It's quiet and clear, and you can see the relationships between the colors and the values and your subject. I can think out there, and its where my inspiration comes from.
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