Claire Milbrath is a name you may recognise as editor-in-chief of The Editorial Magazine but she also creates wonderfully cheeky paintings on top of her brilliant publication.
Claire’s paintings focus on the character of Poor Gray, “a man trapped within the confines of what the illustrator (me) can draw for him,” she tells It’s Nice That. “As I’m untrained in oil painting and art in general, Gray’s world is limited to an awkward world of wonky perspective, naive sexual encounters, and lounging. He’s often pictured laying down, looking anxious, smoking or waiting by the phone.”
There is a sweetness to each of Claire’s paintings in the joyful expressions and promiscuous pursed lips of her characters. “I’m inspired by the naive painters, and their passion to mimic or “fit in” with the master paintings,” she explains. “Like Rousseau famously compared himself to Picasso. I’m this way too, I look a lot to classical painting and the “masters” like Caravaggio for inspiration. One day I hope to be as a good as a Caravaggio.”
“It’s definitely hard to juggle the magazine and my painting,” she explains of spinning her two creative plates. “Fortunately the magazine is totally independent and I’m able to work at my own speed in terms of when a new issue is released and stuff like that.” Though switching between mediums can be difficult to process, "that being said, I’m lucky to not have a rigid 9-5 job anymore,” says Claire.
“I started the magazine because I couldn’t find any magazine to publish my art, and I felt so outside of the art world, and I still feel like an imposter in the art world.”
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