A native Bostonian, Diane Rudnick Mann moved to Los Angeles in 1988 as a writer but after taking a drawing class at UCLA in 1999, saw her future. Basically a self-taught pastel artist who started painting later in life she found the work became a passion. In a way, she believes that not having had years of training frees her from thinking about what she is "supposed" to do. For her, each new piece is like an adventure, an experiment and the excitement for her comes from the process of watching a painting develop across the canvas.
Mann works in pastel because she loves the richness and intensity of the colors. Her style is hyper realistic, focusing on objects we see every day but hardly notice. She enjoys finding something new and unique about them. Her use of high contrast light and shadow, especially in her paintings with black backgrounds, is particularly important to her work because she finds it gives a personality to these objects making us look at them in a new way.
In her latest series, she continues to highlight subtleties in her detailed still life compositions. Working with pastels, a medium commonly reserved for loose lines and soft-focus effects, Mann alternatively applies the medium with meticulous intensity. Brilliantly colored crayons, ripe cherries, candy and unexpected objects pop from the shadows in stark contrast and draw attention to that which may be overlooked in our everyday life.