Cook resides in Maumee, Ohio, but was born in northern Lithuania. Art has long played a role in Cook’s life, and, with her family’s full support, she began dabbling when she was young.
“From childhood, I was into the arts. I would paint and draw as far as I can remember,” Cook says. “After receiving my BA degree in arts and technology from Vilnius University of Educational Sciences in Lithuania, I started to pursue an artist's career full time.”
Accomplished beyond awards
Since becoming a full-time artist, Cook has received a number of notable accolades, including awards from the European Union and Manhattan Arts International. She was also dubbed “Best Emerging Artist” of 2007 by Artsource New York, and her work has even been featured in movies, TV shows, and commercials.
Cook says, “I think my biggest accomplishment would be to uplift the viewers. If I achieved that — that's my biggest award and accomplishment.”
Balancing inspiration and discipline
Art is a constant balance between channeling inspiration and remaining dedicated to the discipline required to be a full-time artist, which Cook has mastered through her many years of work.
A painting is finished to me when I feel inside it matches the emotion or memory I have,“I work usually in the mornings. It's very disciplined because I develop photography editions and they need to fit a particular theme,” Cook says. “With paintings, I'm more free. I like to paint fast to capture a particular emotion of the day. If I come back to the same painting after a week, I paint over it with a completely different image because that mood in which I was at the time is gone.”
For Cook, a piece isn’t done until she achieves the proper feeling.
“A painting is finished to me when I feel inside it matches the emotion or memory I have,” Cook says.
What inspires such an accomplished artist?
“I paint because I am a creator that can only exist while creating, and I want to share my internal world and conceptions with my external world — this world that we all share. I really do want to do my part in making this world more colorful, beautiful, and spiritual,” Cook says. “It is a social norm that we do not slow down enough — we get too wrapped up in routine to breathe in the meaning of life, being human, or developing our higher spirit. Yet, it is my goal to slow people down for this: just for a moment to reflect on such things.”
Cook also lists Mark Rothko, Edvard Munch, and Mikalojus K. Ciurlionis as influential to her work, and the ability to simply change mediums inspires her further.
“If I have a block in painting, I take a break and I do photography. If I have block in photography and painting, I do a drawing,” Cook says. “This way, I never stop creating.”
When it comes to deciding upon the more practical aspects of her work, Cook shares tips on pricing.
“I base it on my achievements and the art market,” Cook explains. “It's always healthy to look at other artists working in similar styles and their achievements. I look more what's going on in the art world worldwide instead of just local. My clients are usually all around the world.”
And when it comes time to frame her pieces, Cook tends to lean toward simplicity.
“My art is very colorful, so I often choose more simple, modern frames,” Cook says.
Here at American Frame, we are constantly inspired by the dedicated work of professional artists like Cook. We look forward to continuing to watch her work evolve as she delves deeper into the themes she has created. Be sure to follow her on Facebook or visit her website to learn more about her art and see her work.