New Beginnings – Interview with Ansley Adams

Ansley Adams artist

Ansley Adams seeks to embrace a positive awareness of self through honest exploration and expression. She explores perceptions of body image through large-scale figurative paintings and installations. Her first in this series, New Beginnings, was published in Studio Visit Magazine and was accepted into ArtFields 2018. She has also had work published in Jasper Magazine and Antioch University of Los Angeles’ journal Lunch Ticket.

Do you consider yourself an artist, art teacher, both, or something else?

I definitely consider myself a hybrid artist/art teacher. I see these two things as connected, as my teaching often feeds my creativity, giving me ideas for my art. Likewise, when I am working on my art, I am gaining a better understanding of the materials and techniques, this makes me a better teacher. In many ways, I still consider myself a learner, I learn from my students, from researching lessons and project ideas, and from experimenting and creating art.  

What’s your medium of choice? 

I am a painter. I primarily paint oil on canvas, though recently I have begun experimenting with painting on silk with a dye-like paint. 

How old were you when you knew you wanted to pursue this profession? 

I started taking art lessons at 8 years old, so I knew very early that I loved art. I feel like I have always known that I wanted to have a career related to art, I originally was leaning towards art therapy, but when I started college, I was intrigued by art education. Once I started taking education classes, I found my second love. I love teaching because I love teaching people to love art like I do.

What’s your favorite work/piece to date?  Do you have a picture? 

My favorite artwork that I have completed is New Beginnings, a painting I painted at a crucial turning point in my career. View more on her website ansleyadams.com (*Note Ansley’s artwork features nude depictions of women promoting positive self body image.)

What do you enjoy most about the arts scene in Union County?  North Carolina? 

I appreciate how welcoming everyone in Union County has been to me, and to my students. They are supportive and make huge efforts to participate with my students. Several local artists have had art shows on campus, visited my classes, and invited my students to visit their studios. 

If you weren’t an art professor, what would you be doing?  Why? 

I would probably spend more time working in my studio, trying to become a professional artist. I would likely spend the bulk of my time in the studio, but also in marketing myself. Between social media and spending time at galleries meeting artists and gallery directors, it can be a full time job. I love making art and I am passionate about the message behind my work, so I would definitely enjoy devoting my time to this. That being said, I choose teaching for a reason. I do care about my work, but I thrive on the academic environment. I love teaching my students, and I love learning from them as well.

What's My Path?