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Oksana Vinnichenko

Artist Spotlight

Since childhood, I have been fascinated by flowers. I remember how, back in the day, my grandmother’s garden was full of flowering plants. I could smell them as I ran by. I will never forget their beauty.

Oksana Vinnichenko is a self-taught Ukrainian artist based in Gdansk, Poland. She discovered her talent only in 2019 and quickly developed a true-to-life painting style in which she showcases an incredible eye for detail. Her floral subjects seem to come alive and almost protrude from the canvas the longer the observer looks at them, while an intricate play of light and shadow adds an air of mystery to her works. 

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INTERVIEW WITH THE ARTIST


Q. You started painting relatively recently, what made you decide to delve into this medium?

A. I was very creative since childhood. I was fond of dancing, music, and I loved to do handicrafts, but I was not professionally taught to draw in any academic institution. At one point, I decided to create two abstract paintings to decorate my living room. It felt amazing, the process was so exciting, and after finishing a couple of such paintings it became a relentless passion. Art got me hooked so I started to learn more and more about oil painting techniques, and eventually, it became more than a hobby - it became a purpose.

Q. What is your background and at what point did you start to consider yourself a professional artist?

A. As an engineering graduate, I was always very attentive to details, shapes, and perspectives. My vision of the subject was deeper than its immediate surface; I was drawn to colours, shades, the beauty in certain details that not everyone notices. As I was starting to develop my painting skills I strived to always get better, to develop this talent, and to not settle for mediocre. From the beginning, it was my dream to create highly realistic art - to make it look like the flowers were coming out of the canvas. And when finally, I felt the beauty of my own paintings, I understood why people are often asking me to teach them to paint flowers, as my works already showcase that I am a professional artist.

Q. How did you manage this rapid artistic development as well as the business aspects that are part of a professional artistic practice?

A. I had a strong desire to become a full-time artist. That’s why I kept on improving as a painter, worked on my social media, and tried to stay active. I knocked on closed doors and wasn’t afraid to be rejected as I know that the path to open these doors is always complex, but if you really love what you’re doing you won’t give up. 

Q. Where does your fascination with elements of nature come from?

A. I was inspired by nature from early childhood. Growing up in a small village I had countless possibilities to encounter nature. I loved collecting herbs and was inspecting the leaves for hours, just taking in all the details.

Q. You have stated that you create to convey your personal emotions, in what way do you infuse your artworks with these intangible aspects?

A. I'm a very sincere and happy person. When I start to paint - I play my favorite playlist, grab a cup of tasty latte and start humming to the song - and drawing of course. Sunny weather boosts my mood, that’s why you can frequently observe the strong play of summer light and shadow in my paintings. To me, flowers were always a source of feminine energy, elegance, and grace. They are a real-life example of magnetizing beauty and evoke feelings that are bright, elegant, and passionate. That’s why, to me, flowers are a way to project my emotions.

Q. What do you think the key is to being able to create hyperrealistic works with such a level of detail?

A. I believe that the key is the will and desire to get better. I will never stop developing my skills, and new works always pose a new challenge. Sometimes, I stand by the blank canvas and can’t even imagine how to create what I have in my mind, but I don’t allow myself to give up, because I know the first steps are the hardest. Only after taking them, and after looking at those first results, the work will evolve into the biggest pleasure. 

Q. Could you describe your artistic process? Do you work from real life, photographs, or memory? How do you go about creating one of your flower works?

A. The process of creation is always long and interesting. You can find dozens of pictures of flowers on my phone. I just love taking pictures of them. I choose the ones that fit my painting out of the best ones and edit them, changing the color, background, and thus already diving into the visualization process. Only after finding the perfect model - I start to paint it.

Q. What would you like your work to evoke?

A. A feeling of living in the moment and being happy as only a child can be. 

Q: Could you describe your work in three words?

A. Elegant - Tender - Passionate


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