A little bit about myself and the reason why I make Architecture Art..
Dear Art lover,
First of all, I would like to welcome you to Cristina Casillas Art and wish you an enjoyable journey while reading my words.
I am going to treat this blog as my art journal and I will be sharing my thoughts and feelings about my new journey as an artist.
What is this website about?
Well, there is an obvious answer: It is about art, but, I would like to be a bit more specific. Cristina Casillas Art is my online art shop, where you can purchase my original Architecture art pieces and art prints. You can also follow and learn about my painting and creative process and my journey from being an Architect, to being “nothing”, to becoming a professional artist.
I would like to start by telling you a little bit about myself. My name is Cristina Casillas, in case I didn’t make that clear already. I am originally from Mexico but I currently live in Amsterdam, Netherlands. I have a professional background in Architecture and I have always loved to paint, and that is why I decided to move to Spain to study a Master in Visual Arts and Education, after working for a few years as an Architect in my country.
Why do I make Architecture Art?
I have painted since I was a little kid and I was very active about it until I started my senior year in high school. After that, life just got too busy and my priorities changed. It was not until college that I started painting again because color and expression courses were part of the curriculum. You don’t have to be an artist to be an Architect, but you do have to be creative. In Architecture school my creativity became a tool to communicate my design ideas and nothing more.
I went through 2 and half successful years of college creating my design presentations by hand, and I used to love it. My favorite classes were the ones where I could spend the 45 minutes just holding a brush in my hand.
Then, the 3rd year of college came around, AutoCAD became mandatory, and hence no more handmade drawings or not enough time for it. Now, don’t get me wrong, Architecture and design software are great and I do use them, but, one of the reasons I study Architecture was because, from my point of view, it is the perfect mix of art and math, and the perfect mix of irrational and rational thinking.
As an Architect, or at least as an architecture student, you are allowed to dream and be creative and just go crazy, but then you also have to justify that craziness. That is the challenge and the most exciting part.
When designing directly with the help of a software, at least for me, the “dream big” part gets lost because you are constantly reminded that there are real limitations that you have to consider at all times. Of course, that makes the design process more efficient but sometimes the most efficient way is not the most creative way, and at some point of my career, I really started to miss that time and space to just let it go and be creative.
I worked in the architecture and construction field in Mexico for 2 years and at that time, that was enough for me to decide I wanted something else, something more related to Art. So, I studied Visual Arts, and it just wasn’t what I expected, it was actually, a big disappointment, but that is a story that deserves its own post.
So, thanks to the above, which I will call "a mistake I had to make" (for my own comfort), I spent around 2 years trying to decipher what I wanted out of my professional life, and my mind and heart and soul went back to Architecture. I actually owe a big part of that, to Amsterdam. This beautiful and perfectly designed city is my biggest inspiration.
After this long journey of exploration, I decided I don’t have to be only one thing. I want to be an Architect. I have been an Architect already for 7 years of my “adult life”, and I am only 30, but I also want to be an artist, and I owe to myself to give me a real shot and see where this path can take me.
So, to conclude, I can’t let myself go, I can’t forget my background and disconnect myself from it. Art is just another way to represent what is inside my mind and a big part of who I am, hence and at least for now, the most reasonable thing to do is for me to make architecture paintings. I don’t know what the future holds for me and my art or what I will want to learn and develop later on, but for now, I feel fulfilled.