Lisa Dittrich creates diversity in her art from kitties to zombies
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the most diverse of them all? Why it’s Lisa Dittrich of course! Whether she’s drawing circus animals, zombies, Dr. Seuss-eque creatures, kitties or landscapes, Dittrich is always ready, willing and able to draw in detail anything that’s asked of her. It started in New Mexico when she was just five years old. Her father was a water colorist and art came naturally to her. By the time she was 7 years old, she was drawing semi-photo-realistic horses and entering school art contests, many of which she won. When she entered high school art class, her teacher and mentor, Dwayne Berg, took Dittrich under his wing and helped her to refine her already-advanced skills. He taught her proportion, and most important of all to her, shading; lessons she remembers and uses to this day.
“He saw something in me and he really worked with me, helped me develop my style. He always said my work was too ‘liney’–I used too many lines in my work, so that’s something I’m always aware of, how much of my work are lines and are they distracting,” she said.
In 1985 her family relocated to Las Vegas, and Dittrich resumed her artistic passions at Rancho High School. After graduating high school, she focused on her art and found a comic book store owner who wanted some ceiling tiles painted with characters. This brought her several commissioned art opportunities and she would spend the next ten years getting married and raising children in Las Vegas.
After being diagnosed with a rare condition, Dittrich threw herself into her art and had a show at “222 Imperial” when Joel Spencer operated that gallery and October 2013 at Blackbird Studios. “Domestic Bondage” focused on the raw femininity of motherhood, as well as domestic chores and duties often taken for granted by many including our own families. Controversial, edgy and bold “Domestic Bondage” delighted many women, embarrassed some men and made everyone think, even if just a little. “People were asking my wonderful husband if my paintings reflected our relationship at all and why didn’t he help out around the house more” Dittrich laughed. “What they don’t know is that Walt is great, I was only depicting ‘every woman’ because no matter how great our spouses and children are, we all feel over-burdened and vulnerable sometimes.”
She recently had a Zombie Apocalypse show at a local comic book store, which was an incredible success so the few remaining pieces she has from the show are on display at The Zombie Zone on Rainbow Boulevard near Charleston Boulevard. It’s an amusing, delightful and decaying look at America’s new favorite obsession: the undead.
In October in the rear gallery at Blackbird Studios, Dittrich and her friend, local artist/lawyer Carrie Bourdeau held a show entitled “Spirited Away” which was a look at cemeteries, death, dying and the after-life. As for beyond that, Dittrich plans to continue her burgeoning art career. Local artist Peter Mengert stopped in while we were speaking with Dittrich and stated very matter-of-factly “We have yet to see anyone so unique and fascinating in the local art scene. Wait ‘til she cuts loose!” Well Peter, we couldn’t agree with you more. Dittrich has already shown us there is nothing she can’t do, few things she won’t do and we can’t wait to see what she has in store for us next.
Mother, instructor, entrepreneur, graphic designer, philanthropist and writer; Jessica Kennedy, a Midwestern native, participates with several local philanthropic organizations including the Las Vegas Hospitality Association, the Clark County Artists Guild, College of Southern Nevada Foundation Gala Committee, Metro Arts Council and Blackbird Arts, Inc./Blackbird Studios.