Tasha Loudon is sick and tired of Peter Rabbit. For eight years working as a muralist, she says, she must have painted about 20 images of the children's-book character. Yeah, it often paid well, but one can take only so much bunny-wunny-foo-foo.
“I kinda burned out,” says Loudon, who, since March, now focuses mainly on her own fine art. “I was neglecting my own ideas, and I've had some really great responses to my pieces. I can do them pretty quick because, doing murals for a living, I've become a really fast painter.”
Probably a good thing. Just imagine some first-time parent in La Jolla giving Loudon creative reign over Little Lord Fauntleroy's room, only to return and find something like this week's cover of CityBeat on the wall. And while she says the piece, “Proverbs 7” (a topless half-woman, half-deer packin' heat in a snowy forest) was heavily influenced by C.S. Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia, she's also quick to point out that she likes to let people make their own judgment on the actual meaning of the oil painting.
“Different people see different things in her,” says Loudon. “The proverb talks about a warning to not be allured by this woman; she could be a trap. Or a lot of people also make a reference to hunting, which I'm glad they do. I thought that was pretty cute, some poor guy out in the forest hunting for deer, and this is what he finds: some fawn chick with a gun.”
She used the image for the flyer for her upcoming art show, which opens on July 11 at OBR Architecture in Little Italy, and even thought to send it to some folks she knew would appreciate it.
“Probably the hunting reference is what I get most, so I made a postcard that I could mail out to all my mailing list, but I sent several copies to the NRA.”
And now that her focus is on her own figurative portraits and not ones of others' imaginations, she already considers the upcoming show to be a pretty big deal.
“Yeah, I got caught up trying to make a living, and I'm so glad I'm getting back into it. I think July 11 will be a pretty big highlight—hopefully the highlight of my year.”
Perhaps the highlight of her life?
“I'm just trying to climb right now to get out there and get some exposure,” Loudon says. “The highlight of my life would be showing at Jonathan Levine Gallery in New York. Now, that would be cool.”
Visit more of Tasha Loudon's work at http://tashafineart.com/