Today we’d like to introduce you to Katherine Downey Miller.
Katherine, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve held a pencil and paintbrush in hand. It was just an activity I always did as a little girl. I was always making things and objects. I made paperclip dolls with fabric using homemade glue out of flour and water. As a 15 year old, my mother signed me up for figure drawing classes at Tufts through the Museum School in Boston, where I found myself with college and continuing education students. In high school, I knew I wanted to be a studio art major in college and graduated with an art degree from Skidmore College. For my MFA, I attended the School of Visual Arts MFA Illustration as Visual Essay Program in NYC. After that, I was a teaching assistant at The Anderson Ranch Arts Center in Snowmass Village, CO and spent a year in Florence, Italy at Studio Arts College International teaching painting and drawing. Both of these experiences were so important to me as an artist and educator because I was able to work with established professional artists and teachers who were so generous in sharing their talent and ideas. And, of course, hands on experience teaching college level and continuing education, plus what other city is as beautiful to be in as Florence – Italy as an artist! Since then, I’ve been teaching and painting. My business, Kdowney Miller Studio, focuses on commissioned, one of a kind, dog portraiture in Dog Portraits by Katherine, landscapes and abstracts for galleries, collectors and interior designers in Katherine D Miller Painting and a teaching atelier where I teach workshops in Landscape to Abstraction.
Can you give our readers some background on your art?
My art is based in nature. I grew up in New England and have always been influenced by the changing seasons, movements in nature and the raw, stark moments that New England weather can reveal.
My dog portraits are like those of family members as I grew up with dogs and horses and really understand the unspoken relationship between humans and animals. Every time I paint a dog portrait, I feel I know that animal through every brushstroke I’ve put down.
I am a traditionalist in that I love really good drawing and painting, but a modernist in how I use my line and brushstroke in my paintings. I paint in oil on canvas and occasionally acrylic. Oil is my love though, because of the sensualness of the paint. I paint because it’s a language I understand. I would say the message in my work is about a kind of fleeting beauty in emotion. I tend to paint in moments, not stories.
Any advice for aspiring or new artists?
It is true, choosing an artistic path no matter where you come from is tough, but if it’s what you’re meant to do, you can’t deny it. My advice for students if they want to get their MFA, is to find a really good low residency program so you can work and get experience at the same time as getting your degree. There are grants out there that will help you in your artist development and give you money as well.
What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
My work can be viewed at Robert Foster Fine Art (robertfosterfineart.com) on Nantucket Island and 555 Gallery (555gallery.com) in Boston, MA. As well as on my websites: www.katherinedmiller.com and www.dogportraitsbykatherine.com, and by appointment in my studio at 450 Harrison Ave, Studio 411a, Boston, MA.
I’m available for commission work for either dog portraits or my landscapes and abstracts, and always welcome interest in painting workshops.
- Address: Katherine D Miller, 450 Harrison Avenue, Studio 411a, Boston, MA 02118
- Website: www.katherinedmiller.com/ www.dogportraitsbykatherine.com
- Phone: 781-405-5050
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: dog_portraits_by_katherine kdowneymiller
- Facebook: Dog Portraits by Katherine@dogportraitsbykatherine Katherine Downey Miller@kdowneymiller