June 26, 2014
Lisa Golightly is an artist living in Portland, Oregon. With a BFA in art, her initial focus was photography, the influence of which can be seen in her paintings. Her work revolves around memory and how snapshots shape, influence, change and even create memory. She works in acrylic using found photos to create work that is both anonymous in nature but also very personal.
Consenses Interview with Sally Taylor:
Your Name: Lisa Golightly
Where you live: Portland, OR
Where you came from: Eugene, OR
Your Medium: painting, acrylic on canvas
The name of your work: Homesick
What made you want to participate in this project?
The concept. I typically work to music, so I was completely intrigued to see how not only my interpretation of this specific piece evolved but to see how my painting then influenced consequent works.
What was your first reaction to the song? (Thoughts, emotions, memories, tastes, smells etc?) If you had to choose one word to sum up the song what would it be?
The song to me felt very much like looking back through an album of photos, or even the memory of photos. Often times I think we create a memory from a photo, we think we remember an event that happened when we were young, but often I think we are really remembering a photo. Or the photo becomes a touch stone to that memory and as time passes all that remains is that one image in our mind.
The word I would choose is ‘homesick’. I felt a sense of homesick for a time and a feeling and trying to capture that again.
What was the story behind the song about in your mind?
I imagined a woman looking at a photo of her mother and herself from her childhood. She wants to both be that child again with her mother, but also is embracing her role as mother. She is processing the shifting roles we play in the lives of the people we love and knows that one day it will be her own children looking back at an old photo remembering her.
Take me through each step of your process to your creation.
I often work from old photos. So I searched for a photo that fit the image I had in my head. Then I began painting.
What did you title your work and why?
I titled my painting ‘Homesick’. It is the word that summed up the feeling of the song for me and subsequently he painting.
What part of the song informed you’re interpretation the most?
The line ‘the world keeps moving faster, but time just slips away…’
What part of your painting came to you first?
I immediately had an image in my head of a mother and daughter standing in front of their home. I wanted to capture a memory rooted in that specific moment of childhood that hopefully stays with you even after it is gone. A childhood house, a photo with a parent, I think most of us have some version of this photograph in our albums.
How do you normally create? How was this experience different?
I typically start with a found image that speaks to me and start working with it, which usually includes pairing it down to it’s simplest essence. This experience differed in that I started with a pretty specific image that I had to then find, instead of letting the image lead the narrative.
What techniques/tools did you use to help you express you’re interpretation?
I tend not to use to much facial detail in my paintings because I want the viewer to place their own experiences and memory into the piece.
Are there certain choices you made which mean something specific to you that the observer might not know?
I think most choices I make mean something to me that a viewer would not necessarily know. In this painting, the hint of the house in the background is very similar to my childhood home.
Extra credit: Did you enjoy this project? More you want to say about your experience?
Yes, I LOVED this project!