Interview with pop surreal artist Sara Sanz

The work of Sara Sanz, is part of pop surrealism, her girls always appear to belong to unreal worlds. Heroines of impossible stories, where the common denominator is that mixture of innocence and contained cruelty. In them we can perceive the fine line, between friendly and evil, in which her lowbrow art tiptoes. The topics covered are diverse but always with an intimate and biographic character, feelings and thoughts ranging from fear to irony, from joy to tears, from disorientation to self-affirmation. Her work focuses primarily on the airbrushing technique using acrylic paints, which provides them with an airy and delicate appearance. In short, she wants to show us that life has its lights and shadows; both equally overwhelming and fascinating, this dichotomy makes the world a place worth talking about...
Hello dear Sara, please, tell us how did you find the artist inside you? How long have you been doing art? Is art something that you always wanted to do?
I was drawing since I was a kid. Color pencils and markers were my favourite toys. After school I went to San Carlos Faculty of fine arts in Valencia (Spain) in 1999 and I kept  developing my artistic skills until I graduate in 2004. That was a crucial year for me, because it was thereafter where I started to fulfill myself creatively and professionally. It was then I knew I wanted to do art forever!
What was / is your major influences? Other artists, books, movies, music or any other media....What inspires you to create your artworks?
My influences are well defined, I’m very interested in Pop Surrealism. Artist I admire are Mark Ryden (first and true master of pop surrealism), Jana Brike, Ana Bagayan, Sarah Joncas, Alex Gross, Natalie Shau, Marion Peck, Nicoletta Ceccoli… I started to grow an interest at classic painting (mostly Flemish) ... I don’t  know how I could live without them! I ‘m fascinated with mythology, classical history, fantasy and pop music.
How does "a normal day of artist" in your life look like?
I wake up in the morning, not too early since I usually go to bed pretty late. I spend the first hours in front of my computer, surfing the internet, answering e-mails, writing ideas and reading. Afternoon is my creative time of the day, I´m sketching, drawing and painting. I like to alterate painting and drawing to not get bored. When the night comes I’d like to end my workday watching movies and T.V. series, it helps me to clear my mind and it’s a great source of inspiration (my favourities are ones about supernatural stuff).
Sara in studio. Photography by Jose Sancho.

What’s your background? Are you self-taught artist or did you study art? Do you think an art education is important or imperitive for anybody wishing to be an artist? What are some of the advantages and disadvantages that you have encountered throughout your career with/without the formal training of the Art Academy?
I studied Fine Arts, I choose the academic path because I needed to learn technique and guidance on my aprentice, I already had the creativitie but I didn’t had a clue about how to materialize it.
What fascinates you the most about surrealism / pop surrealism / contemporary art / lowbrow art? How would you describe your style? What themes do you pursue, what surrealism mean to you and what do you hope the viewer will take away from your art?
Everything in Pop Surrealism fascinates me! I love the mixture between innocent and cruel, Alex Gross said on an interview “The world that I live in is both spiritually profound and culturally vapid. It is extremely violent but can also be extremely beautiful. This dichotomy fascinates me, and naturally influences much of my work. “ I believe defines very well my sensations and motivation.  His strange and fantastic aesthetic is perfect to show my feelings and connect with the viewer, is sensitive and very human (we all have felt into another worlds many times ...) and one last thing, the attention to details and the importance of techinque! All this makes pop surrealism the art where which I feel more comfortable and real.
What do you love most about creating and being an artist? What does “being creative” mean to you?
For me to be creative is to have curiosity about everything around you, wanting to soak up what is around you to then filter and " are to throw it up" in the form of ideas, feelings, images, music ... in my case are materialized in paintings, drawings, sculptures, etc. Being an artist is to be a communicator ... art is expression and language!
Can you describe your typical workflow when you’re working on your art? What are your tools of trade? What medium do you most often use and why?
My rhythm  of work varies greatly, depending on the moment I find myself... i'd like to be more stable but the mood I am moods affects directly my creativity.
My favorite technique is airbrushing. I use the airbrush to the create my paintings and sculptures ... is a very careful work and slow but I feel very comfortable with the possibilities that offers me and the effects that i get, although it is no fun see me working!
Which creative medium would you love to pursue but haven’t yet?
I’d love to work in 3D and although I've already made some sculptures is pretty unknown to me. I’ve been thinking for sometime to make ceramic sculptures, I think is a material with endless possibilities!
Tell us more about your workspace. What was the most funny or weird thing that happened to you in your studio? What is / was the most strange thing hidding in your studio?
I work at home, my studio is the biggest and brightest room in my house. Is very easy for me to get up and start working right away, although it has its drawbacks ... It is more difficult to disconnect from work. I think everything that happens in my studio is quite strange ... at least so says my mother! lol
What toughest challenges have you faced as an artist during your art career? What is the biggest lesson you have learned so far?
The most difficult challenge was to redo in one night an installation for an art fair, it was made with big balloons inflateed with Hellium, the wind blew the night before the opening. So I had to redo the work in a few hours without sleep ... it was horrible, but I learnt that if you make an effort you can do anything you want.
What’s the best and worst advice you ever received in your art career?
Best: Art is a long term career and you don’t have to rush it, everything is about work, work and work.
Worst: One of my teachers at the University told me to quit painting.
What do you dislike about the art world? What is the hardest thing on being an artist? Is the artistic life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?
What I like the less about the art world is the commercial part of it, I’m no good at it and it’s a painful. Most difficult thing is not to fall into frustration and inmovilism.
You’re right when you speak about loneliness in the art world, it’s a very intimate work where you spend many hours isolated in your studio, I counteract  it seeing my friends every week and doing outdoors activities that help me to have people around. It’s very important not to loose contact with the outside world.
Where do you see yourself in the future? Professionally, what’s your goal?
I see myself painting and feeling happy with what I do, my only aspirration is to improve my work.
Thank you dear Sara, it was a honor to interview you, I wish you only the best for you and your art and already looking forward to see your new art works :)
Never miss Sara´s news - follow Sara on her Facebook. Purchase Sara´s artwork at her Bigcartel shop.
By contributor Linda. May 2015. Find Oh, So Surreal on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, Google + or RSS.