Interview: Karin Haas – Artist

What’s your inspiration?
I am inspired by many things and some influences recur more than others. For years I have been inspired by the juxtaposition of prints and the unexpected layered textures of fashion designer, Dries Van Noten. There is a nonchalant elegance about the way he chooses his prints on textures such as cotton, snakeskin, silk, tweeds and felted wools. Van Noten maintains a balance and understanding of pattern that I really enjoy. I am also inspired by modernist architecture, especially contemporary homes. What I find interesting is the way these homes engage their natural surroundings through the use of glass, concrete and wood. I really like the works of Steven Harris and John Hix. I appreciate Harris’ and Hix’s less distinct contrast of interior and exterior spaces and their artistic play with natural light combined with a quality of attentiveness.

Interview with artist, Karin Haas
Interview with artist, Karin Haas

What does your typical day look like?
I don’t think I have a typical day. Each day is very different for me. On what I think is a good day, I usually wake up at 7:30am and have an espresso with coconut yogurt. I have been obsessed with eating coconut yogurt lately. Following breakfast I work all day in the studio. Around 6:00pm I start to get hungry and I will end up meeting my friends downtown for dinner. Or my fiancé will make me my favorite dishes. I assist him by chopping vegetables and herbs and do the dishes after, but it’s very much his kitchen.

How long does it typically take for you to finish a piece?
It really depends on deadlines and what I feel like doing. I like to multitask and work on paintings and drawings at the same time. It’s important for me to let the work evolve naturally. I work in layers and add to each shape or pattern one layer at a time. So it’s hard to say how long it actually takes me to finish a piece, but I think the trick is that I trust myself and know when to stop.

Interview with artist, Karin Haas
Interview with artist, Karin Haas

How do you keep motivated?
Never stop creating work or getting inspired.

What, if anything, would you tell your younger self?
Don’t be afraid to use more color.

Any words of wisdom to aspiring artists who want to pursue a similar career?
Work hard and be kind.

Have any future aspirations that you’d like to share?
I recently collaborated with C. Keller, a New York fashion brand, for their Spring/Summer 2016 collection. This was my first time creating textiles and I plan to work with more designers in the future.

Interview with artist, Karin Haas
Interview with artist, Karin Haas

What’s your dream project?
My dream project is always changing. Right now two of my best friends have been working on their own line. I would love to collaborate and design textiles for them. Collaborating with friends is so much fun especially if you understand each other’s aesthetic.

What art supplies do you use?
When it comes to my pencil drawings, I religiously use Faber Castell pencils. I have drawn with them since I was very young. For my paintings I use the most affordable Chinese watercolors. Not only do I like the price, but I aesthetically like the effects more than the expensive paints. I also use Prismacolor pastels mixed with a random affordable set.

Interview with artist, Karin Haas
Interview with artist, Karin Haas

What’s your process like?
Lately I use Legos to create a 3D composition and may quickly draw an outline of it. If I like the angle, then I’ll just go for it. Then start working on a large piece of paper and make changes as I go along. Even if I have a vision in my head of what the final piece is going to look like, there is a very good chance that it will change along the way and that is what is exciting to me.

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