Award-Winning Art in Colored Pencil
Lis Zadravec’s extraordinary and inspirational award-winning artwork, created primarily in colored pencil, expresses poignant human expression. Her subjects reveal themselves with their vulnerabilities and their strengths.
The artist’s innate skills are combined with superb detail and composition, masterful treatment of facial features and hands, a myriad of textures, and articulated light and shadow. Her style is reminiscent of the masterful illustrations and paintings of generations past. She demonstrates an uncanny ability to master her medium.
Born in Washington DC, Lis Zadravec began taking art at age four. By 10, she was painting in the adult program at the Corcoran School of Art. She states, “I was lucky to have a mother who took seriously, at such a young age, that I wanted to be an artist.” An artist in a family of writers, she learned to strive for perfection from her poet-mother, explaining, “No matter how long, till every word, or stroke is right.” For Zadravec, success has a different definition: It means striving for excellence.
Her standards of excellence have been confirmed by many curators and jurors. She has received many top awards. She recently received the First Place Cash Award in the Manhattan Arts International HERStory online exhibition competition.
She also received a First Place Award in portraiture at respected local shows with the Montgomery Art Association and the First Place and Best-in-Show ribbons across the U.S.
Her work has also been juried into important exhibitions including the Strathmore Mansion and Hill Center in DC. Her piece, “Little Wing” won First Place at the Fairfax Arts Festival. She won first place in the Colored Pencil Society of America’s District Chapter Show for her piece “Looking Back”.
She has received publicity in many different publications. The artist has been featured in The Line magazine in the UK and Elan magazine in Virginia, and in Color magazine in WA. She is currently the featured artist in the Australian Society of Coloured Pencil Artists. She has a chapter in the book Draw Portraits in Colored Pencil. Her article on the subject of art competitions was published in Professional Artist magazine.
Always drawn to portraiture, Zadravec’s first expertise was in using oils. She has since then perfected a method using colored pencils that is more like the Maroger oil painting technique she was trained in. The greatest compliment to her is when her work is interpreted as painting.
Zadravec only uses pure pigment for all of her materials. The wax/oil-based stick it comes in is just the vehicle with which you apply it to a surface. Her work is many layers deep. She explains, “Like adding glazes in oil, layers of color are applied with heavy pressure.”
She achieves a stunning painting-like surface, as a result of her detailed and lengthy process, which has been compared to the meditative work of iconographers. In fact, she has devoted herself to creating colored pencil art that will stand next to any oil portrait.
Lis Zadravec, Love is at the Gate, colored pencil, ink and gouache on paper, 18″ x25”
Lis Zadravec explains, “The years spent waiting for the world to grasp onto my passion for my media, have been time refining a skill and finding a voice. A voice that gets stronger with each piece.” She continues, “Every picture is a story. Like a writer creating a character, I work in narratives that press further into my subject than mere likeness.”
Banner image: Snow Magic, colored pencil and pen on paper, 10″ x 16”.
Visit Lis Zadravec’s website: www.liszadravec.com/
Join Lis Zadravec on Social Media