Artist Interview: Chuck Marshall

Chuck Marshall, oil painter, artist

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “Where is your hometown?”
Chuck Marshall: “Umm, Wilmington Ohio.”

L. N. Holmes: “What is your chosen artistic profession?”
Chuck Marshall: “Artist / Oil Painter”

Chuck Marshall, still life painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “Why did you choose to become a painter?”
Chuck Marshall: “I wanted to be an ‘artist’ since I was a very young child. I was always interested in drawing since I was big enough to pick up a pencil or crayon. Growing up in a home that was quite small created a lack of personal space, and there were seven of us children. I found I could escape when drawing.

“Over time I got attention for my drawing at home and at school. I told my kindergarden teach when I grew up I wanted to be a great ‘arsine.’ Of course I meant artist. I still screw words up till this day.

“Getting positive personal attention was also at minimum, so this made it even more attractive to me. At some point I ended up on a field trip to the art museum of Cincinnati. There I saw amazing artwork that had me mesmerized. I can remember standing in front of this one oil painting in particular, forever just staring. I love going back and looking at it today. It was at this point I was determined to be an oil painter. Not only did I want to be a painter, but I wanted to be a representational painting. I was not interested in abstract art at all. Over time I learned how important the abstract part of painting is to what I wanted to do.”

Chuck Marshall, still life painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “What messages do you try to convey through your work?”
Chuck Marshall: “I can have different messages according to what I am working on. I teach and ask my students this question all the time. ‘What is it you are trying to convey?’ In one painting it might be something as simple as quite and peaceful. Another may be simply beauty. Another anger. It can encompass any emotion or it can just be about shapes, or textures. No matter what the point is, I try to base it off of some emotional impact it has on me. Hopefully it translates to a viewer.”

Chuck Marshall, religious painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “What are your favorite subjects to paint? Why?”
Chuck Marshall: “‘The landscape is my first true love’ I always say. Again, when I was a kid I used to run off to the fields and woods to sketch and observe nature. But today it has become about exciting shapes and lighting. The viewer responds to great design, or composition as in any art form. It doesn’t matter if dance, writing, music, sculpture, whatever, without evidence of intellectual thought that we call composition, the art falls short of its goal or is none existent.”

Chuck Marshall, landscape painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “What was it like to be featured in Plein Air Magazine?”
Chuck Marshall: “When I was featured in Plein Air Magazine, it had to do with the convention. I took three and a half weeks to travel and paint with the end goal of being at the convention. It paid off in spades for my career. The magazine took note of me and wrote a featured article about the trip and my adventures. To answer the question of what was it like, it felt awesome! What more can I say? It is what artists hope and dream of in order to get noticed by their fellow artists and galleries. While at the convention I made many contacts and some new friends that will last a lifetime. It was very strange to have people walk up to me and say, ‘are you Chuck Marshall? I love your work.’ These people were from all over the world. It was quite surreal to dream of these things your whole life to have it finally happen.”

Chuck Marshall, boat painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “How have your experiences in life influenced your art?
Chuck Marshall: “Oh yes! Every experience has impact on who I am as an artist. From the very beginning as I stated earlier. I have a very deep well of experiences to draw from. Some very painful and some so very blissful, but all play a role.”

Chuck Marshall, still life painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “What was it like to go on a trip to the west with your brother and fellow artist?”
Chuck Marshall: “My Brother Mark and I have been very fortunate to get along very well. We have taken more than one trip together as artists. These trips work well for both of us I feel. We talk art, about life, pick on each other, and have each others’ backs. I very much like when people who meet us ask who is the older one. I see his face get red and try to think of some witty come back to turn the moment in his favor. He’s my best traveling buddy!”

L. N. Holmes: “Where do you sell your work?”
Chuck Marshall: “I sell my work in galleries and in events and shows. Locally in Cincinnati, I am at the Mary Ran Gallery in Hyde Park. I have a few other galleries I show my work in and they are on my website.”

Chuck Marshall, still life painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “How do you support other artists?”
Chuck Marshall: “I teach oil painting and art on a weekly basis. I am fairly well known in the area, and always have artists ask me to critique their work. I am happy to share whenever I can.

“Also, when out painting ‘En Plein Air,’ I allow kids to paint on my painting. They seem to get such a thrill out of doing so. The parents are always amazed I allow it. My thoughts and hope is I may influence some child to follow his or her artist side in their future.”

L. N. Holmes: “What’s your biggest complaint about the visual arts industry?”
Chuck Marshall: “This is quite a varied thing to answer. I guess the biggest thing is the lack of value perceived by the non-artist public. I hear from people sometimes, ‘well you will have to wait till you die till you make it big.’ Public schools have been dumping the artist from its curriculum which even more cements in our children’s minds how unimportant art is.

“But, every inch of our culture is touched by artists of some form or another. People have a hard time understanding what I do is a job and not a hobby. They also don’t see that their toothbrush, car, phone, dishes, clothes, movies, packaging, etc. (I could go on and on) was designed by an artist. It never fails someone will walk up to me while out painting and ask, ‘how much is that?’ I tell them and I usually get ‘are you kidding me? How can you justify asking for that much money?’ Not only is it insulting, its disheartening that so many see no value in art.

“I am constantly asked ‘can you donate a painting to our cause to be actioned off?’ Nobody asks the doctor who is asking me, if he will donate his services to be actioned off. And if you do donate a painting that comes out of your only way to make money, it usually gets actioned off at a very low price. It has nothing to do with if I am a name or not. I have seen this very thing happen to a huge name and it went for less than an eighth of what it was worth.”

L. N. Holmes: “What/who inspires you?”
Chuck Marshall: “I have many artist who inspire me. It has changed over the years, but Quang Ho and Scott Christensen, are a couple of living artists that come to mind.”

Chuck Marshall, portrait painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

L. N. Holmes: “What would you recommend to others attempting to become professional painters?”
Chuck Marshall: “Understand the commitment it will take to make a living as an artist. This is a life long commitment. It has a price of many, many hours of being alone and it can be unfair to the ones you love. They could possibly pay the price as well. Learn from the best you can find. Push yourself and take risks. And understand this is a business.”

L. N. Holmes: “Name a few of your favorite books and why they are your favorites.”
Chuck Marshall: “As far as art books, Edgar Payne’s Composition of Outdoor Painting and John F. Carlson’s book on landscape painting.”

L. N. Holmes: “Is there anything else you’d like to tell the readers?”
Chuck Marshall: “I hope when you see my work, you see more than the subject. I hope your mind’s eyes see’s the thought process or emotion behind it. If nothing else, I hope you enjoy the beauty of my subject.”

Chuck Marshall, portrait painting

Copyright Chuck Marshall

To contact Chuck Marshall to purchase works of art — or for questions, comments, or praise — please click here.

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