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Alyse Dietel

Self-Taught Artist

Hello! Thanks so much for stopping by my website! My dream of being an artist, one I've had since I was little, is not possible without your generosity and support, and I very much appreciate every bit of it!

   My name is Alyse, and I am a self-taught artist from San Jose, California. I have always loved to draw, but have only very recently begun to pursue a full-time career in art. I am also a rock climber and love the outdoors, and my passion for nature and wildlife has been the main source of inspiration for my paintings and illustrations. Because of rock climbing I have been to and seen many wild places that few have experienced, and in my art I try to convey the sense of awe and wonder I feel when experiencing a new landscape or seeing a wild animal. The outdoors and art became linked permanently for me in September of 2012, when I fell 80 feet off a cliff in a hiking accident. I broke my spine in several places, shattered my pelvis, and collapsed a lung among other injuries, and was consequently wheelchair-bound and told I would never walk again. For someone as active as me, this was devastating and an intensely difficult time in many ways. Because hiking and climbing were out of reach I clung to art, previously only an infrequent hobby, and began developing my passion for illustration and painting with an intensity that I never had before. So although I couldn’t move my legs and the mountains were far away, I lived vicariously through illustrations of untamed wilderness and wildlife. And as much as my art allowed me to drift away from the immobilized world I was in, it also fueled a fire in me to walk among the mountains once more. Now six years after my accident I am a full-time artist, and hike and climb as often as I draw and paint.

 Finding my own illustrative style has been a lifelong journey, and most of the personal style development has happened this past year. I love working with micron illustration pens and watercolor. I have never taken a class and am entirely self-taught. My goal as an artist is to be able to travel the world and paint in exotic and unique locations while drawing attention to the need to conserve and protect our natural environment.

-Alyse Dietel

Artist Statement

We are all born with an innate and insatiable curiosity about the world around us. As we grow older, we are distracted by adult things and problems, and most of us forget to be curious. We stop looking for fairies in the garden, or dragon scales in the rocks. We forget how to look.

It’s difficult to respect and admire something you have no connection with. It’s harder still to connect with something we have forgotten how to properly look at and be curious about.

Our Earth needs us. It is dying, and in pain, and it needs us. We need to rekindle the feelings of awe and respect that our natural world deserves. The connection to our Earth that we once shared with wild flora and fauna needs to be re-established. We need to remember curiosity. We need to remember how to look. My art is a tool for that remembrance, that re-learning. Wild animals and native plants hide throughout my illustrations, waiting for discovery. They may not be the fairies and wood nymphs of childhood fantasy, but they’re something better. They’re here, now, and are fantastical and mystical in their own right. They are hidden treasures, beautiful gifts from the Earth itself. Seek them out, but do not claim them for your own. Acknowledge their secret presence with a quiet smile, and move on. There are wonders all around you, in the natural world. My illustrations are not so different from reality. And if you look hard enough, you will find not only the beauty of natural, wild life, but also love. Love for each life, love for each petal and stone. Love for this beautiful natural world we are all a part of.

Curriculum Vitae

Selected Exhibitions

Upstream 11”x15” : Yosemite Renaissance 34

Yosemite Museum Gallery, Yosemite National Park, CA: February 23rd - May 5th 2019

Kings Art Center, Hanford, CA: June - July

Carnegie Art Center, Turlock, CA: August - October

Gallery 5 at Gallery Row, Oakhurst, CA: October - November

Multiple pieces, Central Bank and Trust, Lander, WY: June 2017 and June 2018

Multiple pieces, Black Rock Bouldering, Phoenix, AZ: August 3rd - September 30th 2018

Awards

Awarded the Denis Diderot Grant for Chateau d’Orquevaux Artist Residency

Publications

Illustration, Rock and Ice Magazine issue 236 (August 2016)

Illustration, Rock and Ice Magazine issue 237 (October 2016)

Illustration, Climbing Magazine (October 2018)

Residencies

December 2019, NES Artist Residency, Skagaströnd, Iceland

September - August 2019, Studio Faire Artist Residency, Nerac, France

June 2019, Ayatana Artist Research Residency, Ottawa, Canada

January 2020, Chateau d’Orquevaux Artist Residency, Orquevaux, France