Inside the Studio

Anna Hymas

What are the major themes you pursue in your work?

Colour, pattern, fabrics and textures are all important in my work. My studio is my home. I have a small room at the top of the house but I also paint at the kitchen table or even in the garden when I’m inspired. I have also painted the fabrics, cushions, and even the chairs of my house.

The walls are painted white so I can use my home like a gallery, constantly moving paintings and furniture around, which helps to invigorate my work.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

My mum is a painter and she once told me to paint the pictures that I would like to have on my own walls. I often hang my work around the house to live with for a while and to see if it works. 

Prefer to work with music or in silence?

I have a very old radio in my room so I’m a bit limited for choice. If I’m painting something energetic and bold I like to have on music stations or classical music, but if I’m in a calmer mood I’ll often listen to talk radio, or sometimes I prefer to just have silence.

If you could only have one piece of art in your life, what would it be?

I would love almost any painting by Henri Matisse but if I had to choose, one of my favorites is Seville Still Life  – a beautifully ornate sofa draped in decorative fabrics.

Who are your favorite writers?

Books I often think about are The Summer Book by Tove Jansson, Any Human Heart by William Boyd and Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel. I am also reading a Matisse memoir at the moment but given half a chance I’ll be flicking through World of Interiors for inspiration.