Welcome, dear readers, to the release of our annual themed issue! 052‘s theme is Trees, and we’re so pleased by how our eighteen authors shaped their stories around it. Imbue a little nature into your reading life right here on our site, or you can grab a copy of your very own in either print or digital!
Of course, this wouldn’t be a new issue of LSQ without some breathtaking cover art. This issue’s cover has been graced by Samantha Lee, tree-lover and landscape extraordinaire. Samantha was kind enough to share some thoughts about her art with us, as well as her thoughts on the importance of trees!
LSQ: Please tell us about the cover image for this issue. Is there a story behind this image? What was your thought process while creating this image?
Samantha: For the “Lost Swords” illustration I wanted to tell a story without featuring any people. I feel sometimes the story behind props and environments hit harder than one without them. The overall feeling of the painting was meant to be something warm and melancholy. With the swords in the background, I like to leave it up to the viewer to decide if it was a sweet or sad memory.
LSQ: Trees are the theme for this issue, and they seem to appear often in your art. Why do you choose trees as subjects? What stories do you try to tell with them?
Samantha: I absolutely love painting trees. They come in so many different shapes, sizes, colors, and variations. The possibilities with them are endless. I typically either use them as the main focus of a painting or to frame my compositions. In this case, the tree symbolizes something that is constant. From the time when the owners of the swords were there, the tree was present, and hopefully when they are long gone, the tree will remain.
LSQ: Your landscape work is truly stunning. How did you hone your skills when it comes to portraying nature in your art?
Samantha: I’ve always loved depicting nature in my artwork. Landscapes and nature are both things I think people will always have a soft spot in their heart for. Witnessing a beautiful sunset, strolling through a lush forest, climbing the heights of a mountain, or admiring the silent snow of a fresh storm. These are some of my favorite scenes that I try to reimagine. I’ve stuck with landscapes because they truly make me happy and practicing them brings me immense joy.
LSQ: Do you have a personal favorite of the projects you’ve worked on? Or one that was
memorable due to its challenges? If so, can you tell us a bit about it?
Samantha: One of my favorite pieces was this magical willow tree. I was messing around with the idea of giving the dog a birthday hat and I didn’t have the heart to erase it, so I kept it in. I always giggle to myself whenever I see this painting, I can’t help it.