About the artist
This week we meet German artist, Brigitte Kuckenberg-Wagner. Brigitte has been using Photoshop since its very early days. Her surreal and fantasy images have a distinct storybook style, drawing their inspiration, in part, from Magritte and Dalí. After completing her degree in painting and graphics, she worked as a graphic designer for the council planning department in her home town of Solingen and later became self-employed.
From the early 90s – right from the beginning of the 90s – she began using Adobe Photoshop; digital art fascinated her from the outset. At that time, however, it was still a relatively new medium and the art scene, overwhelmingly, did not take it seriously. With new developments in technology, Brigitte started to move from painting and graphic design into photo montage; she aimed to create new, fantastical worlds using parts of photographs. After many, some very successful, entries in national and international competitions and also with positive feedback on the web, Brigitte knew she was definitely on the right path!
How did you first get into digital art?
It was via my husband, who works in the IT industry.
Why did you choose digital art as your medium?
Digital art opens up incredible, experimental possibilities and lets me create from my imagination.
What artistic styles are you particularly drawn to?
Surreal works and images in the style of fantasy realism.
What inspires you?
So much! Pictures and books inspire me, but sometimes even a word I hear is enough to create an image in my head.
What is your artistic motivation?
To process thoughts, dreams and also what I have seen and experienced.
Of all your images to date, which is your favourite and why?
That’s very difficult to answer! I suppose it would be one that I have an emotional response to; this is only temporary, of course, as the next one will be my favourite.
What interesting responses to your artwork have you had?
The best response would have to be by Disney, who honoured my entries to their ‘Fantastical Worlds‘ competition; awarding them with 1st and 5th prizes!
Name three artists who inspire you.
René Magritte, Salvador Dalí and current artist, Erik Johansson.
How do you think you’ve improved as an artist compared to when you first started?
Being open to and thankful for constructive criticism.
What advice would you give yourself if you could go back to when you started making art?
If I could, I would transport my young, just starting self to the present day, with its current technological possibilities.
What devices/equipment do you use to create your art?
Primarily with a PC (built by my husband) and Wacom graphics tablet; I also sketch partly on the mobile tablet.
Which apps/programs do you use to create your art and which are your favourites?
First and foremost Photoshop – currently CC 2019. I use Blender and Corel Painter, as well.
Do you use images from stock sites as well as your photos and if so, which are your favourites and why?
I use my photographs exclusively – as I take a lot of pictures; I now have a vast archive. In addition to that, if I don’t have the required photos, I create 3D objects in Blender.
And finally, do you find that people dismiss digital art as a valid art form?
Unfortunately yes, in parts, they still do.
Thank you so much for sharing you thoughts and art with us, Brigitte!