Ever since she decided to become a professional artist in 2008, Kate Renee has been focused on making that happen. She's well on the way.
The 26-year-old Bloomington native has been hard at work on her next chapter: 3D painting. This follows her most recent solo exhibit, "Beauties Behaving Badly," a Gamut Gallery show featuring fairytale females covered in blood, eating junk food, and taking drugs. The 3D series will be called "The 7 Sins," based on the seven deadly sins. It came to her after she did "Beauties."
"If princesses are misbehaving bad, they're being sinful," she says, sitting on a chartreuse couch in her naturally lit studio at the 2010 Artblok off of East Hennepin. "Seven sins seemed like the next logical step to go, and then that way I could step away from the Beauties."
The 7 Sins series gives her new material to draw from, but still allows her to continue her style of taking ideas from popular culture and twisting them into social and political messages. But she also wanted to go up a step in technique. That's where the 3D idea came in.
"I didn't want to just knock out another series of paintings that were a twisted concept like the Beauties were," she explains. "I wanted this to be even cooler. That's where the 3D effect came in."
The first painting in the series is already under way, and deals with a certain honey-loving bear most people grew up with on TV and in storybooks.
"The first one is gluttony, and it's Winnie the Pooh," she says. "And he is morbidly obese. The piece will be called Gluthoney. I use a lot of plays on words to keep it humorous."
One of the other planned pieces for the series features Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and deals with lust. Her goal is to have the entire series done by by May of next year, and the Gamut has already asked to see Gluthoney when it's finished. She's had a great experience working with them, but she's keeping her options open.
The part that will take the longest is the technique she's using this time around.
"What I'm doing is a technique of layering resin and paint," she says. "I'll do a layer of paint, and then pour two boxes of resin over it to give it actual space between the next layer of paint. And then I paint another area, and I'll pour another two boxes of resin."
The further she gets into the piece, the more things pop out and give off that multi-dimensional effect. The works-in-progress also served as a nice conversation piece for those who visited her studio during Art-A-Whirl.
"In the past I would have never showed a piece in progress. But in doing so, it was a great starting point to a larger discussion about my art," she says. "This allowed me to share my process and inspiration and really tell everyone who visited me who I am and what I am about."