Published October 18, 2013 http://www.stmatthewsrandolph.org/interview-with-mike-dziomba-of-divine-delights/
Interview with Mike Dziomba, Artist
Mike Dziomba, parishioner and fine artist, grew up on Long Island. He began his career in the corporate world of pharmaceuticals, eventually transferring to New Jersey from Connecticut.
Majoring in Biology in college, he had no idea as a young business person that he would end up painting richly detailed portraits of nature.
Mike is the lead artist at our Divine Delights – Art, Wine, Cheese & Chocolate event, November 2. In the following interview, you will learn a little more about this interesting member of our St/ Matthew’s family.
StM-How did you learn to paint?
Mike – I was living in Denmark and at that time, they still had “blue laws” so everything closed early on Saturday afternoon and was closed on Sunday, so I found myself with time to fill. I am self-taught, was never a museum goer, didn’t study Art History. Of course, I’m familiar with all the great painters just like everyone else, and since I began painting, I’ve taken courses that have significantly improved my technique, but mostly, I taught myself through painstaking practice!
StM – If you had to characterize your style, what would you call it?
Mike – I would say “realistic”, however, I don’t aim for photo-realism. I use a number of photos and steal the features I like from different shots.
StM – Do you take the photos?
Mike – Yes, I can take my camera and go to parks and reserves and rural areas and spend eight hours taking 600 photos or more. Then I narrow down to the views and lighting I like best and compose my painting based on the photos. I use them for reference and inspiration, versus direct copying.
StM – Your paintings are so realistic, I would have guessed you set up an easel and painted on site!
Mike – (chuckles) No, I use acrylic paint, which dries too quickly outside. And the lighting changes too much. I prefer painting inside.
StM – What do you like best about your work?
Mike – I like the finite sense of accomplishment finishing a painting gives me. In business, there are always meetings and emails and opinions – it’s a long process before you see a result of your efforts, if ever. When a painting is finished, it’s done!
StM – Tell me something interesting about you, besides your art.
Mike – I play the accordion!
StM – Really?
Mike – (laughing) Well, I’m Polish and I took lessons as a kid. I could probably pick it up and produce a pretty decent Polka if I had a few minutes to warm up!
StM – Wow, that is interesting!
StM – What advice would you give to someone who wanted to become an artist?
Mike – It’s pretty hard to make a living selling art – I would say you need a back-up plan, for sure, and would recommend taking art classes.
StM – Do you have another job as well?
Mike – Nope! I’m retired and I paint. I love when I’m painting – I get into a zone and eight hours can fly by in a flash.
StM – What do you think God is calling you to do with your painting?
Mike – Hmmm… Capture images of things that may not be with us later…record and remember God’s beautiful creations.
StM – I think, judging from your paintings, that you certainly have achieved that!
Thanks to Mike for taking the time to share a little about his passion with us!