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Q&A: Lorraine Loots

Artist (and House and Leisure Rising Star) Lorraine Loots has started a new project, and we couldn’t be more excited. We chatted to Lorraine to find out what’s in store for the rest of the year. You’ve just finished your 365 Paintings For Ants series. Tell us what inspired you to begin this project at the beginning of last year. Ironically, the project was initially intended as a way to stay productive and creative after deciding not to be an artist. Which one of your paintings did you enjoying working on the most, and why? That's a really tough question! Each one has a different story, meaning and context. Off the top of my head: it was really special painting the Ganesha (23 September 2013) whilst actually being in India, for someone from South Africa who got engaged in India a year before, at the same time as it was painted. But that's just one of 365 special stories. Take us through your process. Do you paint at specific times during the day? How do you choose each artwork? I try and paint early so that I can get around to admin, but that doesn't always happen. I've had times where I got home at four in the morning and had to sit down and do a painting. Normally I'd look at who booked the date, and if they had suggestions for subject matter I'd choose something that resonates with me. Then I start looking for a reference picture (if I can't actually take one myself, I look in books or online). Once found, I start by drawing rough outlines with a watercolour pencil and then paint the image over it. You’ve now started 365 Postcards For Ants. As Cape Town is the World Design Capital for 2014, each of your paintings centres around the Mother City. What’s your favourite thing about starting this new, inspired project? I love how it's challenging people to suggest things within a narrower framework, to get them thinking about what they love about a certain place and why. I'm also excited about all the adventures I'll be going on this year (for example, if someone suggests Boulders Beach, I'll do my best to actually go there on the day). Describe 365 Postcards For Ants in three words. Connectedness, Sentimentality, Synergy. Where can readers purchase your artworks? They can visit *Don't miss 365 Paintings For Ants, the exhibition at 6 Spin Street, Cape Town on Friday 31 January until 6 February 2014. *WATCH: Lorraine Loots talks about 365 Paintings For Ants. Interviewed by Lindi Brownell Meiring