We had the good fortune of connecting with christopher st.leger and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi christopher, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Yes, art-making is my business. But my need to make paintings came without a business concept while in my twenties. I needed to paint like some people need coffee or alcohol or worse. Years of this transpired before I looked down and realized that I had a bloodline of creation that was able to sustain something like a business. I reflect on my years of painting and marvel at how the business of selling paintings has changed. When I started taking paintings to the public I had to find walls in cafes or restaurants, which lead to art galleries, and eventually art institutions. But I feel that social media has returned me to a direct one-on-one encounter with collectors. The only art gallery I work with is located in the small town of Lockhart, where I also happen to live with my family. In nearly every way, this combined formula is exactly what I dreamed about when I set out as a youngster.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My painting studio is in the back of Commerce Gallery, not unlike a workshop or a pizza kitchen. And by having my space open for visitors I am able to exhibit the sincere devotion I have to painting. I show up here with regular hours each day as an explorer in paint. This past year I published a 250 page retrospective book that journeys through my 25 years as an artist. Altogether, I value the breadth of my work and its natural evolution through time.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Never before has Lockhart really been as exciting as it is now. People see it and just get it. First of all I’d park the car and leave it be so we could just kick around on our bikes or on foot. The town is full of my friends who run great small businesses like Loop n Lil’s pizza, Chaparral Coffee, Commerce Cafe. It’s been a great place for my two middle school kids who can go downtown and do their own stuff. And now we have a short term rental network that makes it the perfect getaway for a weekend. The Caroline, the Carlisle Guesthouse, The Birkner, just to name a few.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I take all of the joys and celebrations in being a painter, and struggles and complaints as well, to my best friend and wife, Andi.