jannie erasmus. emerging young talent.

Born & raised in Pretoria, oil painter Jannie Erasmus translates his passion for colour, texture and beauty from his heart straight to canvas.

Drawing inspiration from a myriad of images and being influenced by the greats such as Salvador Dali and Van Gogh, he paints striking portraits, playing with textures, lines and colour to produce portraits with vivid imagery and life-like emotion.

Experimenting with different subjects, he’s able to capture the innocence and beauty of the divine feminine, as well as the pulchritude and raw virility of a nude male figure. Every brush stroke is carefully laid on canvas with intention and a keen eye for detail, bringing every painting to life and leaving the viewer in awe.

Isaac Lediga speak with the artist to find out more about what makes him tick.

Isaac: Where do you get your inspiration from?
Jannie: I normally go searching for images on the internet or nature that inspires me or talks to me in any way, then I use the images to create my own stamp on it, changing it to what I want.

Isaac: What influenced your preference for painting?
Jannie: Well my style is very dependent on my mood for the day.
I usually put my headphones on and listen to my music while waiting for the spark to hit and my creative juices to start flowing.
Music makes painting so much more intense – it makes you feel the brush with every stroke, using the colour and paint wherever the music and mood takes you over the canvas. It’s absolutely amazing, I live for that moment!

Isaac: How long does the whole process take?
Jannie: That all depends on the oil, the weather and the mood.
I realised that creativity isn’t just a switch you pull.
If you work on a piece that you would like to be a happy piece you might just mess it up when you are in a bad mood.
I have learnt a very important thing from paining with oils, PATIENCE.
Oils are so much fun every time you get back to add the next layer, it just gets better and better.
It can take anything from 2 weeks to 4 months. Every piece is different, every single one… it will let you know when it’s done.

Isaac: How do you normally start your artwork?
Jannie: I start by adding the image in pencil, then adding all the normal colour for the tone and shadows to create all the depth. After that I just let myself go and am open to any colours.
I absolutely hate following rules of what’s wrong or right choosing a colour. I feel the colour chooses you, if you accept that, then you are free to be you.

Isaac: Who are your biggest influences in your life?
Jannie: I have to say my all-time favourite artist Van Gogh, Salvador Dali, Monet & of course my favourite South African Artist MIES and Lionel smit.
I love the freedom that they have in playing with colours and not always giving you the perfect image, but conveying perfectly the way they see things.
That makes it so much more special. Every time I look at their work it makes me want to grab a canvas and start painting.

Isaac: What are the biggest highlights of your career?
Jannie: Last year September 2021, a client from Cape Town messaged me saying he wanted to buy one of my nude pieces and then later that day decided to get me to do another one.
The following 2 weeks I started selling my pieces like hot cakes  a total of 8 painting 2 weeks. This made my year and I felt like an artist and not just a painter anymore.

Isaac: let’s get more into detail about your Background
Jannie: I started in school doing pencil art most of the time until matric. I always wanted to go and study art after school but unfortunately money was very tight and people told me that that it wouldn’t be a great career choice, as I would struggle to make a living from it.
So I decided to go study hairdressing, the only way I could let myself be creative and to create in a completely different way with colours and different art pieces.
In 2018 I decide that I would like to start learning how to paint and use colour. Lucas De Witt just gave me so much more than what I expected. I learned so much from him. He took me right back into my art world.

Isaac: What genre do you consider yourself to be?
Jannie: Well I would like to think that I am an impressionist. I love doing every piece using my feeling and my mood to guide me through the whole process.

Isaac: What do you love about painting and what was the reason for picking the images you painted?
Jannie: That is very difficult to say. I love beautiful things in nature and in people.
I try to capture the beauty.
I would get really bored if I had painted the same things every time I paint, I love a variety of different options. I also like a challenge and to be inspired by beautiful things. The images of the woman I pained I found particularly challenging.
With women, as a young girl, mother, and grandmother they don’t know what is coming or what is expected of them.
As mothers and women they give so much love even if they are not getting anything in return.
I tried to capture the hardships – almost a time-capsule – the sacrifices they had to make from girl to grandmother and beyond, to give so much love and care for things they love.
The nude pieces were painted because of love of a beautiful bodies –  well we all do love great bodies and also I dream of having a six pack one day, lol.
The faces are not seen in these paintings but only the outlines, I wanted to create a mystery and a fantasy for everyone that looks at them and dreams of their perfect person or lover..
I wanted people to see what they wanted to see the most but also spark some conversations about the things we are so ashamed of, like being naked.

Isaac: What is your biggest wish for 2022?
Jannie: I would love to get my pieces of art seen and to create a brand name – something which people aspire to own… and the biggest wish would have to be  be to get an invitation to exhibit my work – my very first one.

Isaac: Where do you showcase your work?
Jannie: At the moment everything is on Instagram (@jan.artist1) there’s not a lot on there but its coming.
You can view Jannie’s works on instagram: 

jan.artist1 
or simply click on the Instagram icon.