Arizona artist Cyndy Carstens began a love affair with art after winning a scholarship to the Art Institute of Minneapolis at the age of 6. Her art endeavors have evolved over the years rooted in challenges of her personal life. “I believe every day is a gift. We must never take a day or each other for granted. We become our best ‘selves’ when we share our time and passions with those around us,” says Ms. Carstens.
Since that youthful initiation, Cyndy has worked in a variety of mediums, including traditional oils, graphite, acrylic, watercolor, and mixed media. Today, her paintings are almost exclusively in sustainable oils. She also loves doing pen & ink drawings in the evenings. Her husband calls this series of drawings Cyndy’s “Night Shift”. She never tires of learning and exploring different ways to express life, light and emotion.
Cyndy comes from a hardworking blue-collar family where the arts were not encouraged. Being of a stubborn nature, however, Cyndy continued to pursue art when and where-ever possible. She spent her early career years as a medical illustrator, greeting card illustrator, graphic designer, art director and muralist while following her passion for painting in the wee hours of the night while raising three children. A contrary scenario that Cyndy’s zeal to create paintings full of light began in the dark.
Carstens’ work combines brushwork with palette knife and will sometimes have illustrative images superimposed. Her work is not meant to be an exact representation of the nature but a poignant interpretation. Cyndy works from sketches, watercolor and oil studies and her own photographs to bring paintings to life in the studio. She particularly strives to keep her colors clean and pure. To that end, there is no black on her palette . . . ever. She remarks, “Every dark in nature is a combination of colors not fashioned from shades or shadows of black.”
Cyndy has humbly received countless awards over the history of her career and has been featured in newspaper and magazine articles including Reed Magazine, Phoenix Home & Garden, Southwest Art, American Art Collector, The Scottsdale Independent, SoScottsdale, The Arizona Republic, and ArtSource Arizona. She has been a guest on numerous television & radio programs. Cyndy Carstens’ paintings are in private and public collections across America and honorably in more than a dozen countries around the world.