Featured Artist Betzi Stein

Artist Betzi Stein’s intuitive portraits capture the personality of her subjects, offering a playful aesthetic as well. More about this artist’s work can be seen by viewing her website.

 

“Eric the Redd—Hero King of Hoops and Bands” Acrylic on Canvas, 24" x 24" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Eric the Redd—Hero King of Hoops and Bands” Acrylic on Canvas, 24″ x 24″

 

I’ve been a keen observer of people and have had a passion for making art ever since I can remember. As an outsider growing up the late 1940s in Philadelphia, I learned early on to express myself visually rather than verbally. This began what would later come to define my signature portrait style—people, color, detail, intuitiveness, stylized realism and humor with a bit of an edge.

 

"Hollywood Cowboy" Acrylic on Canvas, 24" x 36" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Hollywood Cowboy” Acrylic on Canvas, 24″ x 36″

 

I earned a B.F.A. in Sculpture and Jewelry Design at California State University Long Beach, where my skills in portraiture were honed by sculpting life-sized clay portrait busts every week for a year!

 

“Art Fair” Acrylic on ClayBoard, 24" x 18" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Art Fair” Acrylic on ClayBoard, 24″ x 18″

 

After college, I worked as a jewelry designer until circumstances in my life necessitated a change of direction. I became a full-time massage therapist immersed in the healing arts, but it took me away from the visual arts for nearly twenty years.

 

“Paul, Palm Springs and Pooh Bear” Acrylic on GessoBoard, 16" x 16" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Paul, Palm Springs and Pooh Bear” Acrylic on GessoBoard, 16″ x 16″

 

One day, I read an article about an artist, Ann Kullberg, who “painted” portraits in colored pencil on her dining room table. It was an “ah ha” moment for me and as I had only a small space in which to work, I thought if she can do it, so can I! That was the catalyst that rekindled my desire to bring art back into my life.

 

“Aiden” Colored Pencil on Paper, 24" x 8" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Aiden” Colored Pencil on Paper, 24″ x 8″

 

I began doing my own colored pencil portraits, which, while very satisfying, were also extremely time-consuming. Feeling the need for more creative flexibility, and though I’d never actually learned to paint in school, with the help of YouTube, I taught myself to work in acrylics.

 

“Woman in Front of My Painting” Acrylic on Canvas, 12" x 36" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Woman in Front of My Painting” Acrylic on Canvas, 12″ x 36″

 

In addition to formal portraiture, many of my subjects are drawn from people I see on my wanderings when I’m out and about—people just living their lives, unaware of my presence. Working from snapshots I take myself, I isolate one or two figures against a color field or decorative background, reproducing as much as possible the image in my mind that I was initially drawn to.

 

"Travelin' Man" Acrylic on Canvas, 36" x 48" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Travelin’ Man” Acrylic on Canvas, 36″ x 48″

 

People who attract my attention often present a striking or quirky presence and through my interpretation may be subjected to my sense of humor, mischief and good-natured sarcasm.

 

“Susan” Acrylic on Canvas, 12" x 16" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Susan” Acrylic on Canvas, 12″ x 16″

 

My commissioned portraits are somewhat more conventional in that a background setting of relevance to my subject may be included, although my sense of fun is always in evidence. A working relationship with my clients is essential and I strive to maintain a balance between pleasing them while still being true to my artistic aesthetic.

 

“Knitter’s Hands” Acrylic on Canvas, 28" x 22" by artist Betzi Stein. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Knitter’s Hands” Acrylic on Canvas, 28″ x 22″

 

An ongoing series of more intuitive paintings are my “Hand Portraits” which evolved from doing massage, my hands being the central tool in my profession. My tactile sensitivity cultivated over many years has enabled me to “read” the energy of my clients and that is expressed in these paintings.

 

Artist Betzi Stein in her studio. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

Artist Betzi Stein in her studio

 

My work has been exhibited and collected throughout the United States and I am honored to have won numerous awards. I paint in my home studio in the Palms section of Los Angeles.

 

Artist Betzi Stein invites you to follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

 

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