P-I-T-T KAIT PAINTS FOR PITT!!!

 Kait Schoeb with WTAE sports reporter Ryan Recker following her interview with her Bill Fralic  painting

Kait Schoeb with WTAE sports reporter Ryan Recker following her interview with her Bill Fralic  painting

Big and exciting things have been having this year and I'm excited to announce my biggest and grandest project to date! I was contacted by the University of Pittsburgh back in January asking if I'd come in for a meeting to discuss an idea for a new exhibition the university was going to create and that they wanted to find the right artist for the project. This year Pitt had created their own Hall of Fame program honoring their legendary athletic alumni. We discussed during the meeting how of having an artist paint the portraits of the honorees where the paintings will then hang at Pitt followed by the inductee ceremony taking place at the Petersen Event Center on Pitt's campus September 7th. We went over some ideas, but we'd have to wait till April to receive all of the nominations for who and how many people will be introduced into this year's first class. Around May we had our last meeting where we decided on 16 former Pitt athletes whos portraits I would be painting for the ceremony. 

 Kait during her WTAE interview at the Petersen Event Center

Kait during her WTAE interview at the Petersen Event Center

 Kait live painting Bill Fralic portrait for WTAE interview

Kait live painting Bill Fralic portrait for WTAE interview

I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel any pressure at all. I'm extremely ecstatic and grateful for what I've always know was a huge opportunity, but that's just it this is a HUGE deal. Not only will I be painting these portraits for a large university, but more importantly to me the athletes themselves will be viewing the paintings as well as getting a print of it. Nobody more to impress than the athletes because let's be honest, nobody wants a bad painting of themselves. When I did the math, there wasn't even 16 weeks till September 7th. When we finalized all the details of the Pitt paintings in mid May, it meant I'd have less than a week to work on each one of these paintings( 4-5 days maximum). Each painting is done in acrylic paint because I do need them to dry quickly and all are a 16x20 inch size canvas. In all honesty I wasn't sure if it was possible to get them all done in time. I had a few people ask me, "Do you think you'll have enough time to get them done?" And my answer always was I have no choice. Even if it means I don't sleep I'm going to make sure these are done and on time.

The moment of truth was when I sat down to work on my first painting. I didn't know if it was going to take 1 day or more than a week, but I needed to start immediately and plan accordingly. I exhaled with relief when I almost finished the first painting in one day. It wasn't going to take me 14 years to paint 16 paintings after all. Since then I've set a goal for myself to finish 8 paintings in one month, and then that'll give me all of August to get the paintings delivered to Pitt with some relaxing time to spare. As of right now I have 11 paintings done and currently working on the 12th one, and still on track to reach my target deadline by the beginning of August. Some days I work on a painting all day, some only a few hours to keep my sanity, but all and all I have worked on the Pitt paintings everyday for the past 2 months. I can't wait till the paintings are finally done and we can give the final reveal at the ceremony in September. It seems so surreal right now and I still haven't fully grasped the gravity of the situation and what an amazing honor that I was chosen for this project. Maybe later on it'll hit me, but for now I'm just treating it as another project and just doing my job. I couldn't be more proud to represent working artists and the people of Pitt and Pittsburgh.

In June I was contacted by Ryan Reckers of WTAE and asked if I would do a story piece on the Pitt paintings. Much love and appreciation to Ryan and WTAE for my interview which you can watch on the link below! 

http://www.wtae.com/article/local-artist-puts-her-touch-on-pitt-history/21241971

To keep up to date with my painting progress follow my art Instagram page at Paints By Kait where I'll post sneak peeks and videos of my current projects!