Niagara Gazette — LaDuca began taking classes at Partners in Art more than six years ago, but quickly realized that as one of the few men studying there, he wanted to bring his male cousin in as well.
LaDuca said that unlike many famous artists, most people won’t be able to identify his paintings by style alone, because he likes to study and perfect the technique of lots of different artists and techniques.
“When I see an artist I like I’ll do a lot of reading on them. I have a library of books completely underlined,” he said of his method. “It challenges me to try to immulate someone I respect as a great artist.”
His next venture, he said, is sculpture portraits, for which he plans to travel to Arizona to take classes with a sculptor he admires.
Insana also likes to copy other artists — the old masters are his favorite — but he sees himself as someone who is still learning.
“I have to develop my own style and Marilyn has been helping me break out into new areas,” he said. “This has been a good collaboration because I’m still on my journey.”
His biggest challenge, he said, is learning to look at the world differently. He considers himself a left-brain thinker, one who’s more attuned to scientific or mathematic thought. LaDuca said Insana is too much of a perfectionist.
“I like pastels,” Insana said. “They’re really neat to work with, but a pastel doesn’t have a point, they’re flat. You think, ‘How am I ever going to get an edge.’ I need precision!”
“But amazingly, when you get into it and solve the problem ... painting is really problem solving. You really don’t draw figures or faces, you look at light, you look at dark and contrast,” he added.