Artist of the Month: Scott Royston

16 Apr 2007

0612aom1_600x440_2Scott Royston, our December Artist of the Month, paints using a medium he makes himself: powdered pigment mixed with black oil.

by Edith Zimmerman

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Eggs to Dye For
2003, oil on panel, 13 x 18.

Scott Royston, our December Artist of the Month, paints using a medium he makes himself: powdered pigment mixed with black oil. He renders his subjects, predominantly flowers and other still-life setups, with exquisite clarity and attention to detail, using the unique properties of his medium to imbue his compositions with a vivid and dramatic aesthetic.

“My painting process starts with a thorough underpainting,” Royston explains. “I then try to get a good study down during the first sitting—in color, using a bristle brush—to establish my values and compare them with one another to make sure everything is where it needs to be. Then I refine the painting by switching to a mongoose brush, which requires a lot of time and patience.” The artist consistently switches between bristle and mongoose brushes when painting, preferring the bristle for coarser, bolder application of paint and the mongoose for more delicate enhancement. When a piece calls for a glaze or a half paste, Royston will add Maroger medium to his paint mixture of pigment powder and black oil.

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That’s a Bingo
2006, oil, 13 x 10¾.

Although the artist’s preferred subjects are still lifes, he keeps his mind open to other sources of inspiration, explaining, “I don’t like to close myself off.” The inspiration behind Eggs to Dye For—the work he submitted to the Artist of the Month competition—and many of his other compositions, was the vivid array of colors and the complexity of the setup that he designed. His work frequently features tight adherence to realism, luscious color, and meticulous brushstrokes.

Royston attended the Baltimore School for the Arts and The Schuler School of Fine Arts, both in Baltimore, where he was raised, and studied in private workshops with Matt Zoll, Jerome Atherhold, and Will Wilson. His work has been exhibited internationally and widely across America, been featured in numerous publications, and received dozens of awards and awards and honorable mentions—five in 2006 alone. He is represented by Greenhouse Gallery of Fine Art, in San Antonio, Texas; the McBride Gallery, in Annapolis, Maryland; Somerville Manning Gallery, in Greenville, Delaware; and Winstanley-Roark Fine Arts, in Dennis, Massachusetts.

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White African Irises
2006, oil, 24 x 12.
Pansy Pickin’s
2006, oil, 10 x 12.
White Daisies
2006, oil, 11 x 12.
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Chinese Tulip Magnolias
2006, oil, 30 x 24.
Mussels
2006, oil, 16 x 14.
A Touch of Southwest
2006, oil, 12 x 14.

Edith Zimmerman is the editorial assistant of American Artist.


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