"When you’re an artist you can paint anything, anyone, anywhere."
These were the words that first ignited the creative fire within Union City artist Angie Villegas, then age 5, as she stood mesmerized by a man painting in his public gallery.
She never did learn the artist’s name (“I was way too shy to ask at 5," she said), but it was watching him that day that inspired her lifelong love of art.
Villegas’ latest show is entering its closing weekend at the NewPark Mall Cultural Corner. The show runs though Oct. 18. On Saturday, Oct. 15, she will hold a meet and greet from 2 to 4 p.m.
Patch asked the artist a few questions about her start as an artist and what inspires her work.
Q: When did your professional art career begin?
A: I started airbrushing at 18 then moved on to acrylic and watercolor painting.
Q: How did you get in to painting sports figures?
A: I used to collect sports card when I was younger, but wanted something different, a card of my own. So I began recreating the images I liked. I wanted to capture the movement of their bodies, the life in their eyes.
Q: What are your favorite teams?
A: The Oakland Raiders and Athletics.
Q: Who inspires you?
A: My favorite artists are Henry Ascencio, Stephan Holland, and many of my artist friends and family.
Q: What is your favorite painting you have done?
A: Roberto Clemente.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: Right now I’m working on little ACEO (artist collector edition and original ) paintings for fun and my Etsy store. Then it’s back to some larger paintings, unless I get a commission. I’ve been thinking of doing a Cal Berkley painting for the Ballpark Gallery to hang during football season.
You can meet Villegas and check out her collection at the NPM Cultural Corner on Sept. 24 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and Oct. 1, 8, and 15 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
The NPM Cultural Corner is located on the lower level of the near