My name is Janeine Scandrett, and I’m 19 years old. Technically I’m half black and half Korean, a blasian, I like to say. I enjoy painting canvases, shoes, water bottles, etc. I have lived in Colorado my whole life; the majority of it has been spent creating. By that, I mean iconic characters on a new medium, a fresh playlist, or a trick line on my skateboard.
Many artists have a specific piece or “magnum opus” that they truly believe is some of their greatest work. Do you have any piece that fits that description for you right now, and if so, can you explain the significance of it?
My magnum opus would have to be a watercolor piece that I did in cool colors only. My inspiration was day and night. Although the two couldn’t be any different, you can still see someday features at night and vice versa. i.e., When you can still see the moon during the day and when you notice clouds blocking sight of the stars. The idea of looking up at the same place but never seeing the same thing also drew me to landscapes.
Inspiration can sometimes be hard to seek out. When that happens, how do you usually deal with the “Artist’s Block?”
When I have difficulty finding something that I genuinely want to create, I usually just expose myself to a new area because that means other colors, sounds, and sometimes creative brains. I try not to force art because, for me, the finished product is a result of your time and effort.
The Arts have been an incredible tool to convey personal and cultural themes. What message do you want to convey and have people to think about when they see your work?
When I started this intro question(type of art I do), it was a little challenging given the various arts I like. A melting pot is how I would describe my message because there is no limit to what I create and will create in the future.
It goes without saying that the Arts have been an instrumental tool to the Black Struggle and Civil Rights as a whole. What has been your experience as a Black Artist and how do you channel that experience into your work?
Being a young black woman, many things are assumed of me before introduction, whether I like it or not. When you are looking at a painting, you are simply judging the art, not the artist. When I’m painting, I get to decide how it will be portrayed to a certain extent. Furthermore, I get to choose if I want to change my style or medium; making those choices is actually a beautiful thing in itself.
What or who are the greatest inspirations that have pushed you to become a better artist?
I would have to say art teachers to start with. Almost all of mine had a way of bringing me out of my comfort zone. They also helped me realize that it doesn’t hurt to try, mistakes happen, and the only obstacle you have is you. Another group of people who have pushed me to become a better artist would be my fellow artists, whom I could relate to when dealing with art frustrations. It’s also very connecting to be able to do something that I’m passionate about with someone I’m close to and knowing that they are also passionate about it.
There are a lot of inspiring young Black Artists out there with dreams of reaching the skills that you have. Do you have any advice or lessons that you want to pass on to the younger generation about being an artist?
Thinking about my journey as an artist, I wish someone would have told me that art is whatever you make of it. Messy is sometimes better but if you don’t like it, then do it again. Practice makes progress. Adding on to that, comparing your progress to others won’t help in accomplishing more. Finally, there is no harm in trying. If you want to try a new type of style, then go for it.
What process do you go through when creating art? What are the steps you take to ensure that the idea you have is illustrated perfectly?
I start by having an idea or having someone commission me for customization. Then I find pictures that I can refer to so I can paint exactly what the customer wants. Sketching or outlining the idea is the next step and, depending on the detail, can be a little detailed. Once I’m satisfied with how it looks, the background is the first thing. From there, I just make my way up the canvas, painting it how I would see it. If the art isn’t on a canvas, I usually seal it with a protectant spray to help prevent scratches and peeling.
How have you expanded your collector base and developed your career as an artist?
I started with only doing canvas art, but I slowly started customizing several different things for people. My most popular request is water bottles, specifically HydroFlasks.I have also painted lighters, shoes, and phone cases. I’m working my way towards a small business so that I can expand my customization projects.
Art is a constantly changing medium with new trends seemingly coming out of nowhere. How do you keep up with these trends?
With trends comes new things to try and new mediums to explore. The more we explore, the more we see what will be significant when the era ends, what we will be known for. Trends are mostly discovered on the internet and through friends, and I have found that social media is a great tool for opportunities.
Do you have any new pieces that you are currently working on that you would like to preview or mention? Can you explain the significance of that piece?
I am currently working on a pair of shoes for a friend that is inspired by a Japanese animation series. The show is filled with wise lessons and interesting aspects that you can take from it. I chose to do sections so that all the characters I saw were important and contributed to the story. I’m using acrylic leather paint with a softener called “2 soft” to prevent the paint from cracking.