LandEscape Art Review Special Issue - Page 167

Henrieta Maneva LandE scape CONTEMPORARY ART REVIEW Bulgaria and the United States, my experiences in Austria have also influenced my work. In Austria, I fell in love with Gothic architecture. I experienced a culture different from mine. I considered this to have been both beneficial and useful to me. Austria helped me find out what kind of person I was while being far away from the people who give me tremendous emotional support and love: my family and friends. Despite all obstacles, it helped me trust myself more. I am happy that I met amazing people there. I found and continue to honor great friendships. Austria made me stronger and more independent. The United States has played a significant role in my professional and personal development. The United States gave me freedom and opportunities to do what I am really have a passion for, and likewise, to develop my potential. I am blessed to have met and been surrounded by an amazing group of artist friends that are incredibly supportive and inspiring. They boost my ego periodically. My experiences in the United States have helped me believe in my talent once again (after 19 years of a break), develop my potential in the sphere that matters most to me, set my personal and professional goals, and reach my dream (which I still am doing). Most importantly I have the freedom now to pursue my goals. I was not intentionally looking for style. Everything comes in a very natural order and way for me. I even avoid signing up for more than one class or teacher, in order to find myself and my specific style. I started in an illustration class with illustrator Lena Shiffman after my father passed away. This was a kind of tribute to him (he was my biggest supporter and always wanted me to achieve my dreams). Starting this class and painting again, after a 19 years break, was more of an art therapy for me in order to deal with depression and grief. Architecture was my mom’s dream, not mine (I was good at math and drawing, so she thought that this was the best job for me). My style is probably a combination between my native skills and an attraction to drawing in addition to my two relatively new passions, watercolor and architecture. My usual process and set ups are as follows. First I draw with pencil, and if the painting includes so many details I start ink right away. When I finish the sketch and ink is all applied, I erase the pencil’s draft and I start painting with watercolor. After finishing watercolor I apply one more layer ink. I use Faber