Get to know Frank Bruckmann
Frank began his studies at the DuCret School of Art in New Jersey, while at the same time taking classes through the summer at the Art Students League in NYC. In Europe he sketched at the Ecole des Beaux Arts, copied the masters in the great museums like the Lourve and the Prado. He spent 8 years between France and Spain painting both plein air and in the studio. He landed in South Norwalk on his entry back into the US.
Now a resident of New Haven, CT, Frank has found endless subject matter for landscapes in New England, but periodically packs his easel and travels farther and wider in his VW camper. Frank is currently spending the year with his family living and painting in the south of France.
1. Was there a pivotal moment that began your career as an artist?
During my late 20’s, while being down and out with an injury, a girlfriend gifted me a simple sketchbook and a pack of colored pastels, which interested me immediately and led me to a small art school in NJ….I wasn’t sure if I could be a career artist, but I knew I was in the right place.
2. Can you tell us about the process of making your work?
I am very deliberate with my work. If I see something I like, I paint it. I work almost every day and for long hours. When the weather is good, I head outside to paint directly from life. It is my favorite way to work….outside with the changing light and atmosphere and weather conditions where I have to decide specifically what I want to relate on canvas. Right now, my wife, my teens, our dog and I are on a one year stint in the South of France, so EVERYTHING is different. I am crazy about the landscape and light here and am enjoying the exploration needed to decide where to paint next!
3. How has your artistic style developed and changed over your career?
I am still improving my draughtsman skills. When I compare new to old paintings, I can easily identify the areas in the old paintings that I want to change to improve, and often I break out the paintbrushes and do just that (unless they’re hanging on someone else’s walls!)
4. Where do you find inspiration and who are your biggest influences?
The sentient world gives me my inspiration. One can find beauty worth painting in almost everything (especially here in the South of France).
5. Which artist of the past would you most like to meet?
Being in Provence, Cezanne is so evident every time I set up my easel. These scrubby oaks and white sandy soil and vineyards and blue skies and villages up on mountaintops and cliffs and mountains and sea…..and the Provencal light! It is a dream!