Zan is an Equine Artist from Johannesburg, South Africa who creates beautiful art pieces for her clients across the world. We had the great pleasure of getting to work with her for our front page as well as find out a bit more about her and her work in the Q&A below.
“I always feel strange talking about myself haha, but I can say that I do absolutely love my job. I'm also very lucky that my love for horses could be incorporated into my major focus.” - Zan
SO WHO IS ZAN LOESCH?
The bug of loving horses bit me early in life at about the age of 6, but sadly I've just had such bad luck when it has come to owning and riding them. However my art has made me feel close to them again and has brought so much joy to those who have had to say goodbye theirs. Most of my commissions are a unique memorabilia they can keep for years to come. Currently I have pieces in England, Slovenia, Namibia, USA and the Netherlands. My goal is to tick the countries on the world map and maybe in the future to visit a few of these places and hand over my pieces to my clients in person.
I still laugh at my chosen medium to specialize in as charcoal most certainly does not 'behave' on paper and me being a striving perfectionist, one would of assumed graphite's would be a better fit. But an impossible challenge is always fun!
I have gathered a few collectors of my art and awards along the way thus far, I too have local celebs who have supported me as well- which I could thank immensely as my exposure doubled from then on. I was published a few times in magazines and received some sponsorship's with incredible imported drawing supplies. I did not expect my work to become so recognized over such a short space of time having just started in 2016. The end of 2017 I gave birth to my best friend which proved to come with a whole new set of challenges trying to juggle my career and be 'the perfect' mom. Before my son I was already working around the clock doing commissions, attending gallery openings and
pursuing each and every avenue for exposure and possibilities. Now my job is mainly home based and I am hoping to start attending more functions again in 2020 when he goes to school.
HOW DID YOUR ARTISTIC JOURNEY BEGIN?
I sold my first piece when I was 13 at the Life Style Mother's Day Art competition, I remember this day as I only came runner-up and not first place, Oh boy was I upset, however my piece was the only one that was sold. Well… from then on it was always a competition to me, even when it wasn't for anyone else. I was lucky that I come from an artistic family where they encouraged my talent and taught me all sorts of mediums.
IS THERE A SPECIAL HORSE THAT INSPIRES YOUR LOVE FOR SKETCHING?
Not a specific horse no, I still have not even managed my own personal portrait of one of my mares that touched my heart. I did have a dog who passed away in August and he inspired me to begin drawing in colour pencils, which prior to that colour intimidated me. He hangs on the wall in our home now so we can still have him close by.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE PIECES TO CREATE?
I have started to thoroughly enjoy doing Nguni cows in charcoal, their coat patterns stand out beautifully that cannot always be captured so dramatically in a colour painting. Currently I am using my own reference photos to draw from and will be starting my second Nguni of this specific herd and series soon.
WHAT IS AN AVERAGE DAY LIKE FOR A FULL TIME ARTIST?
Being a full time artist my days never have a start nor end time. Between ordering supplies and besides the actual drawing; there is the marketing side and connecting with clients. Sometimes meetings are a necessity to get the correct vision the client wants on paper. Like all businesses there are slower months when you have to source work or I will work on gallery pieces. After putting my toddler to bed I will then work till early hours of the morning to meet my deadlines or do any price list updates or marketing etc that requires my immediate attention.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE OTHER ARTISTS PURSING THEIR PASSION?
I learnt that no matter how talented you are, if you do not work hard you will achieve nothing. There are so many naturally talented artists out there that don't believe in themselves or maybe don't have the right support structure. In the beginning, one does not make money but just enough to cover supplies. Once you have established yourself as an artist you may need to re-adjust your prices according to demand and supply. I also feel that client liaison is of top priority when owning any business, should this fail-you will have no business. Your pricing should also be structured accordingly, one must take into consideration who your target market is and what they can afford, don't forget to also not under value your time either.
HOW CAN WE GET A COMMISSIONED PIECE?
Should you want to have your own piece done or enquirer about an existing gallery piece; you can find my details on facebook (Equine art by Zan) a 50% deposit is required up front as well as a high quality photograph for your commission. The quality of your photograph depends on the quality of your artwork. Once you are satisfied it's up to you what postage method you prefer, all drawings are sprayed with a sealant that also preserves the artwork then packaged into a tube for safe transportation. The duration time of a commission piece is dependent on the size of your order- which is communicated before deposit is accepted. Also please note that end year is my busiest time and there is a waiting list for Christmas orders.