It All Began With A Gift
As a kid, my parents encouraged me to be creative by giving me art supplies for Christmas, starting around age 7. I remember waking up one delightful Christmas morning to find a huge present wrapped in shiny paper, unfolding to reveal one of the most exciting things in life: a blank white canvas- the embodiment of potential. Paired with this gift were acrylic paints and brushes. My mom fixed me up in the garage, and in the cool Bay Area mornings, I painted with my German Shepherd, Steely, by my side. I experimented with Ultraviolet, Ultramarine Blue, Mars Black, and Titanium White, and I walked away with a storm-tossed, turbulent ocean. I could tell that when I blended colors just so, it was like the impressionist paintings I had seen at the SF MOMA, but I didn't have the vocabulary or skills yet to articulate my thoughts or actions, I simply felt it. I knew in my heart it felt good, and that it was good. The painting had movement, color, and drama. My parents still have this painting, and when I look back at my life, owe them a whole lot. They raised me up around art and are artists themselves. In fact, check out my Dad
During my teen years, I was in trouble a lot for fighting with my sister, with whom I have a great relationship now. :) As I endured lengthy periods of groundation, I spent dozens of weekends alone in my room, painting. Although this was pure torture for a teen to be socially isolated, I am actually thankful for this time I spent honing my craft and becoming a skilled painter. I can remember one Friday night, in a totally furious rage of emotion, I took out all of my anger and sadness on the walls of my room. I started painting beautifully with my acrylics and didn't stop until I had another storm-tossed ocean climbing halfway up my bedroom wall. To my Mom's credit, she walked in to check on me, around 9pm and saw what I had been up to. She looked at the turbulent, blue-green wall, then looked at me and giggled, and simply walked out. I guess you choose your battles when you have five kids, including two raging teenagers, and was probably just thankful I wasn't harming myself or getting high. The mural stayed. I was healed. I painted my first mural at 13.
My parents have encouraged me to follow my dreams as an artist since day one, and have supported me throughout every point of my career. Thank you Mary Clare and Tomás!
Dominique Kongsli, (DOMKO) is a professional artist and teacher, and teaches art at the Boys and Girls Club of Bend. Dominique believes that Art can provide meaning and richness to one’s life, and an avenue in which to express one’s voice, heart, and mind. Dominique incorporates her values of thoughtfulness, beauty, and discovery, into her fine art. Dominique graduated from Pepperdine University (‘09) with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, and holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from Claremont Graduate University (‘13) in Studio Art. Dominique Kongsli resides in Bend with her amazing husband Eric and furry, Beagle-son, Jackson.