As is pretty typical of most of my interviews, I first learned of Jenny Dienno through the 614 FB page. I loved the colors she uses. Then she decided to do a month long series of moons in February and I just had to interview her, learn more about her process and meet this fun loving young lady!
We started the interview online and it took months for us to connect. Then, she took a month long trip to Europe in May so we had to postpone our in-person meeting until June…whew! Finally, I ran into her at the Sunlight Market on Gay Street and we set a date to sit down and talk at Starbucks the following week. Found out that her folks are from Pittsburgh (yay!) but she grew up in NW Columbus/Clintonville.
She attended The Graham School for high school and graduated in 2009. (The Graham School (or TGS) is a tuition-free public 4-year high school (grades 9-12) charter school Its with a focus in experiential learning in a small-school setting where all students are known by all staff members). She did have the talented Megan Mosholder for an art teacher while there and learned lots of cool things while attending. Students spent 3 days a week at the school and 2 days a week in an internship. During her first internship, Jen worked for the British Holiday Travel Agency (hence her love of travel!). In her junior and senior years, she interned at MELT magazine and took classes at Columbus State as part of her ‘walk-about’. Originally, she thought she would pursue a degree in religion but instead got an associate degree in art.
From there, she transferred to OSU where she received a BA in Psychology. Done lots for being so young, huh? Because she started working as a Patient Care Associate for at the James Cancer Hospital on the Acute Leukemia Floor while going to school (at age 19 no less!), it took her a little longer to obtain her degree but she wouldn’t trade the time for anything as she has loved her job. In the last few years, she has taken courses to work towards a BSN but discovered that nursing was not a good fit for her (her hubby is going to school to become a nurse, however!). So, instead, she is opting to take her GRE this year to pursue a master’s in either Public Health or Social Work. She wants to stay at the James and continue working with patients. Not only does she love working there, it pays for her other passion: ART!
Although she has no formal art training, she has loved to paint since she was young…sound familiar?? She states that she is self-taught using the things she has learned for her current body of art work. Most of her work is done in watercolors and gouache and encompasses many themes but nature seems to be predominant in her pieces.
I love the feeling I get when I paint. I love being able to put my ideas down on paper and create fun and vibrant art. I have always been very drawn to creating. I would categorize my art as original, affordable watercolors and gouache paintings. I paint a variety of different subjects, from moons to florals.
Most of her inspiration comes from travel, going on adventures and experiencing new cultures. At her tender age of 24, she has already been to Europe 3 times, all for one month periods. Her first trip was to London, Paris and Barcelona and the second was to Edinborough, London, Paris, Florence and Rome. The most recent (May 2016) was a delayed honeymoon…she and her hubby eloped to the courthouse in July 2015…where they visited Copenhagen, Geneva, Paris (do you see a trend here? LOL!) Strasbourg, Barcelona and Lisbon!!!! I am soooo very envious! The secret is that she saves all of her comp time during the year and combines with her vacation to go on these phenomenal trips.
Making watercolors and gouache paintings are not the only media she uses for her work . Recently, she’s been experimenting with Gold Lead and Copper Leaf which has been challenging but a lot of fun!
She sells her art through the shop she has had on Etsy for about a year: OohMyGouache.etsy.com as well as during Made Local Marketplace shows.She also loves creating commissioned pieces (so feel free to contact her to create your vision!). This year, she is trying to have more of a local presence with her art doing the Moonlight and Sunlight Markets on Gay Street as well as the Grandview Hop, Dublin Art Bizarre and the fall Made Local Marketplace. We talked at length about doing shows and she is really excited about trying her hand in creating custom wedding invitations. Her work with MELT magazine has paid off in that venue and although she has already done a few of these, she would like to pursue this more seriously in the near future.
I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know her better and having the chance to chat about so many different things…one of the things I just love about these interviews!! I felt an instant connection to this tenaciously sweet and funny young lady and I hope that she continues to pursue her art as I think it is pretty special. AND, I was very touched when she gifted me with 2 of her beautiful pieces at the end of the interview.
Some fun things she had to say about herself:
I love to listen to Motown while I paint. I’m Jenn -coffee fueled watercolor artist, Harry Potter obsessed, traveler, dog-person, and lipstick lover living and working in Columbus, OH. I am known for my vibrant colored watercolor and gouache florals and moons. I also love commissioned pieces so feel free to contact me to create your vision!
Keep your eyes peeled for this lady’s work…I think you’ll be seeing lots of her in the future!
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