I don’t usually plan my work. It just kind of happens. The experience of making art is sometimes like watching my hands paint and draw; the meanings that people find in my work appear to come from a subconscious place. I never plan to paint a peanut with a suitcase, or a big chicken drinking coffee, for example. Even when I do intentionally repeat a theme or character in my work, something surprising still emerges.

I used to believe that I was just entertaining myself, but listening to others talk about what the details mean to them, I realize that my work has several possible meanings, like an ink blot. The response to my work is like a peek into the human psyche, both mine and anyone else’s who care to tell me what they see.


My art doesn't neatly fit into any genre I know of, but might be called humorous surrealism.  There is often an element of cartoon to it. 

Most of my work is in acrylic paint or colored pencils, and I often combine drawing and painting media, taking full advantage of the wonderful qualities of acrylic mediums to make it all work together and stay that way. I also work in graphite and ink, ceramic and other methods of hand building and small sculptures, even a chicken 'sock doll' created without pattern or instructions, just winging it.

It is hard to say what influenced me sometimes.  I really am inside my own world when in the creation zone. Certainly external things do influence that, as we're not in a vacuum.  If I'm angry or happy that comes out in the painting, in dark humor or joyous absurdity, or other symbolic things I'm mostly unaware of at the time. Issues or current events I'm interested in may be reflected in my art, e.g. personifying birds because I don't eat them.

As far as art influences, I admired many of the old masters but didn't learn of very many of them until I was an adult. As a kid, I recall being very critical of poorly drawn TV cartoons or magazine illustrations! I resisted checking out books from the library if I deemed the illustrations "bad." I care a lot about technique, and concept is just as important. I believe strongly that artists are capable of producing highly original art if they tap into their own minds, and let their unique life experiences be filtered through it. There may be 'nothing new under the sun', but there are infinite re-combinations of those things, as evidenced by the incredible variety of art throughout history, much of which wasn't even preserved for us to see today. Now, we have many methods of preservation, thankfully.


Art blog: http://cindyschnackel.wordpress.com/

Facebook Art Page: https://www.facebook.com/CindySchnackel/

I no longer sell on any Print On Demand site, but I still maintain an account at Red Bubble because I enjoy the community there, and because I have 250 business cards out there with that URL on it: http://www.redbubble.com/people/cschnack

All work © Cindy Schnackel, all rights reserved.