Leslie King

Leslie King was born and raised in the suburbs of Los Angeles, spending her early days dirt bike riding and skateboarding around the neighborhood. In her early 20s, she left Los Angeles to spend a year studying under the stars and on the beaches of Australia. After returning, she settled in Long Beach, Calif., where she still resides. "I love the textures of this patchwork city - the many faces I see on a simple drive down the street inspire some of the faces that show up in my work," she said.

The human figure is the consistent theme throughout King's work. The title, "Personaje," translates in Spanish as character. I never start a painting with a concept in mind, I lay the base color and then begin building shape and structure," she said. "The character is in there already, I just need to uncover them." Leslie uses both oil and acrylic paint, depending on her mood and patience level.

"I love men so naturally their faces show up frequently in my work," she said. Her other favorite subject is nude women. After studying for two years under the tutelage of Cuban artist Mike Rivero, she now paints at home in her backyard studio with the hummingbirds and squirrels