Christiane Vleugels work can be characterized as realism, but if you look closer you realize there is much more. Not only a lot of love for the subject, but also the feel of an ethereal atmosphere that exudes dramatic beauty and glamour. Each of her paintings unveils a certain aspect of life and inspires to dream. Christiane paints her philosophy of life in every painting she does, and it’s instantly visible. Her zest for life and her unshakable belief that the universe provides are palpable in her paintings, never failing to lift a smile from the viewer. Originally painting in a romantic style to gain the recognition she craved as an awkward teenager, she soon developed a mature mastery of the styles of the old masters through commissioned paintings, “which paid my bills and honed my skills,” Christiane recalls with a smidge of melancholy and a handful of gratitude. These days Christiane paints what’s alive and calling in her, whether it’s a sense of wonder about this world or compassion for her models, especially those that lack an articulate voice, such as women who’ve suffered trauma, her widowed father, or sometimes animals. Christiane paints in oil on board or aluminum panels, preferably of large formats, drawing, according to the mood or theme that may be stirring in her, on her large archive of photographs of models who have posed for her over the years.
"To paint what is in the heart always has been the biggest challenge. Sheer beauty, clears the mind and lets you open up for world’s beyond the dream. Of course it hasn’t always been like that, it took many years of reproducing old Masters and working on commission before I realized that the time has come to create from the heart. When I look back at those tiresome years, during which I often felt under incredible pressure and even, at times, uninspired, I realize they were a necessary part of my artistic journey. I really do believe I owe my various skills to that endless list of commissions. But now the time has come to take new directions in life. With each original work I create today, I realize more and more that the true learning process has only just begun for me!" Christiane Vleugels
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