Interview with Laura Sonnek by Zayne Engel
Zayne Engel recently interviewed student Laura Sonnek to find out about her studies at Bethany, as well as her plans for the future as an artist.
What got you interested in painting?
I always loved drawing growing up as a kid, and my favorite restaurants were the ones with the white sheets on the table that you could draw on with crayons. I enrolled here at Bethany as a junior in High school for some extra credits, and the class that fit best into my schedule was painting. I thought to myself, “Well, I’ve never done that before!”, so I gave it shot and I’ve loved it ever since.
What style of painting do you prefer to spend time on?
I love landscapes in particular. There’s something special about all the different elements together. I especially love trees, I’m not sure why and probably never will. There is just something really unique about landscape portraits.
Tell me about your process as an artist, how and what you decide to paint.
I try to stick with images that I have some kind of connection with, whether it’s photo that I, or a close family member has taken. That way, you have more of a connection with your source, which to me is more impactful then just grabbing an image off the internet. Aside from that, I like to have one part of a painting finished before I move onto the next part. All artists paint in different ways and there is no right or wrong way to paint, but this is the way that seems to work best for me.
What artists inspire you?
Aright, so my 3 favorite artists are; Auguste Renoir for his portraits, Joseph Mallord William Turner for his landscapes, and Caravaggio for his expression.
What are your plans for the future and how will your art help you?
I’m hoping to teach art at a college level, so my foundation here at Bethany will really help me with grad school and other things like that, and will help me figure out what my emphasis will be as I start applying to different institutions.
What’s the best advice you’ve received when it comes to painting?
A teacher once told me that I could do anything that I wanted to, and that really opens up a whole new world when it comes to being an artist. You don’t have that thought in the back of your head saying you can only do certain things that you’re good at. Having him tell me that if I was willing to put the work in- that he thought I could do museum quality work, really opened up how I viewed myself as an artist and where I could go with it in the future.
If you could travel anywhere in the world to be able to paint something in person, where and what would it be?
I would love to go to Venice and paint the canals. I just imagine the water there being a little bluer than anywhere else in the world.
What other creative endeavors do you participate in?
I have done theater physics which is really fun, and I worked in the costume department in the past. Also, as an RA, I’ve put together a couple fun eventful things for my residents.
Final, most important question, does pineapple belong on pizza?
No, pineapple is a fruit.
Zayne Engel is a freshman whose major is currently undecided. He is a member of Bethany’s Men’s Basketball team and in his free time, he likes to read and write. Zayne enjoys reading because of the freedom it brings- how opening a book can take you to a completely different place.