Growing up in Atlanta, Theresa Drapkin was visuals-obsessed from day one—her earliest memories are of trips to the local High Museum of Art (seriously!). And unlike plenty of kids who spent a whole lotta time with puffy paints, she actually stuck with her childhood passion, heading to Pratt for an MFA program where she got hooked on a very old, but totally new to her, medium. “I chose watercolors for an assignment and fell in love with painting, so I started searching for other convenient mediums. The luminescent, velvety texture and vibrant colors of pastel made it my go-to,” explains Theresa.
Though she now has a spacious studio in Kingston, New York (where she also runs the very rad Kingston Wine Co. with her husband), as a young artist in NYC she struggled to make space for her very messy process. “We lived in a studio apartment, and I had to paint on the kitchen table and clean it all up before morning so my husband could cook and our dog didn’t ruin it,” she laughs. But Theresa persevered, and the world is way more colorful for it: Her vibrant still lifes combine graphic patterns, pared-down florals, and swaths of deeply saturated hues in a way that feels both comforting and startling at the same time. — leah bhabha