Water Works with Kevin Mount from FolsomAug 29, 2016 09:26AM ● By David Norby
Coining his technique “color water,” Kevin Mount produces colorful, texturally vibrant pieces with energy and emotion. The award-winning artist’s work has been featured at the Crocker Art Museum, as well as the KVIE Arts Showcase. Speaking openly about his autism and how it helps artistic abilities, Mount further inspires by giving back to the community. He’s donated over 100 paintings to various causes—including the Make-A-Wish Foundation. A member of Sutter Street Artists, you can view his work at the Bag Lady Bou-tique and the Folsom Arts Association’s Members’ Show at the Harris Center through September 11.
HLB: What drew you to the medium of watercolor?
KM: I started with pencils and, in the beginning, couldn’t understand the watercolor technique. You’re supposed to use more water than color to give a transparent effect, and it’s usually done with big brushes, but it was difficult for me to have control over paint that way; therefore, I developed my own technique—“color water”—where I do the opposite by using less water, more paint and smaller brushes. It makes the colors more vivid and allows for more texture. It takes longer to complete a piece of art, but I enjoy it more this way.
HLB: What inspires you most?
KM: As a child, Disney was a highlight in my life, but I also like geishas and mermaids. Recently, I’ve begun working with some nature pieces and animals—that’s something new and beautiful to explore.
HLB: How has autism helped you in your artistic endeavors?
KM: I think without autism, I couldn’t do the same things. When people with autism like something, we really love it! We have that extra focus when something interests us. I can sit for hours and paint—all I need is some classi-cal background music, and the colors become a party for my eyes. I can see the picture before I start drawing; some-times I start in a corner of the paper instead of the middle, because I already have the picture in my mind. If I get tired of brushing with my right hand, I can use my left hand as well.
HLB: How do you handle artist’s block?
KM: I walk away and do things like play the piano and sing; then, when I’m more relaxed, I come back to the art.
HLB: What do you hope viewers take away from your paintings?
KM: I want to bring them happiness; I want them to sense and feel the energy of my mind, heart and hands, which are all involved in the rendering of the art; and I want the rainbow colors to make a difference in their day.
HLB: What are your goals for the future?
KM: I am currently exploring the possibilities, and I am looking forward to starting school at Meristem this monthly which incorporates the arts in their instruction method.