Who Art You? 21

I love that there are so many artisits that use their emotion to tap into the power and artistry of abstract. Please meet this next artist Clara!

Clara Berta

Who ART You?

How did you grow up?
I grew up in Translyvania, which is in Romania, however I speak fluent Hungarian, as my parents do.  I came to the US in Chicago at the age of 11 and had to learn English, which I did quickly.  I came to Los Angeles in 1987 and loved it immediately. 

I became an artist because……
I realized how healing art was in my life during many stressful times, and especially after the loss of my husband, while I was grieving.  My creative work helped me to heal and find myself.

What brought you to art?
I discovered my love of painting while at Antioch University, although I was studying Psychology as my major. At first, art was simply a creative outlet which I set aside after I got married. However, after I lost my husband I returned to painting as a form of therapy. The experience was so healing and rewarding that I dedicated myself to art full-time and decided also to teach art, to help others re-live their stress and discover their own creativity. That brought me much joy and happiness, and I am very grateful.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go.
Monet’s water lilies have always been my favorite and has stayed with me for many years.  I was inspired to become an artist after going to his home and seeing the gardens. I totally understand why he loved painting them over and over.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why?
This is a difficult question, I will have to think about this one further, since I am truly happy being myself.

Who, what influences your art?
I am influenced by nature quite a bit, especially the ocean. I recently created a collection called “Fifty Shades of Blue,” which was inspired by my many visits to the beach in Santa Monica.

What has art taught you?
My practice has actually taught me many things, including patience, persistence, tenacity and also about using my personal strengths to advance my work and become more successful in business. I have a very outgoing personality, and I love interacting with people, so creating videos about my work and process has been both fun and rewarding.

Favorite/best resources as an artist?
I love the people who make my canvases.  A resource called Duho Studios creates exceptional work, and are amazing people as well, running a successful family business. I truly love the quality of work they produce.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands?
In my current Minimalism series I actually do not use nearly as many instruments as I have in the past. This series is created without brushes, palette knives or other tools. It is strictly paint in various consistencies on the canvas. So I guess my magic tool is my own energy, because that is what creates the movement and flow in my recent work.

What medium do you use? Why?
I use acrylic paint because I love the process of creating quickly and seeing what develops without waiting a long time for it to dry. Acrylic also allows me the freedom to play with transparencies and levels of color, which has been key in my current series.

What is your favorite subject matter?
As an abstract artist I paint feelings and emotions rather than particular     subjects. I love to paint the spirit of the ocean and nature… My work is very organic, so I suppose the Mother Nature is my favorite subject!  

What are you still hoping to learn?
As I continue to evolve as an artist I also hope to grow as a successful businesswoman, reaching new clients and collectors. I wish to learn how to become an inspiring entrepreneur and share my teaching with others, and take that to the next level by mentoring a few artists.

When I think of art, I ………….
I am uplifted by the joy it brings me, creating something beautiful that I hope will also make others feel happiness. When I am creating art I am elated, in my element, a kind of happy zone!

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect?
In my life it is all one, since I am a full-time artist. My professional business, my daily life, and who I am as a person is all a singular element to me.  Art carries into my home, my lifestyle and is always surrounding me- not only my own, but I also love to collect and support artists. It is exhilarating to have the beauty of art at the core of my life.

A defining moment in my life was when…
Someone suggested early on to me that I treat my art as a business, not a hobby.  That was the the best advice I ever got – that being an artist I must live it 24/ 7 – and  always be networking.

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it?
Sometimes I sit quietly and listen to my intuition and see what comes to me, I also look at colors and select three and go from there.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by?
I have always loved this quote by -Maya Angelou - “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. “

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future?
As my work continues to evolve my goal is to have larger exhibits and work towards a solo show this year.  I also wish to show my work internationally.

Name:   Clara Berta
Website:  https://BertaArt.com
http://Instagram.com/BertaArt
http://facebook.com/BertaArt

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Who ART YOU? 20

Long before I became an artist, my good friend who was an artist herself, gave me some valuable advice. She said buy original art. And when I lamented that I didn't think I could afford it, she said she would rather see me buy just one piece of art for my house than a bunch of random reproductions from a random store. So with her help, she took me to an art exhibit of one of her favorite artists, Trine Bumiller. There was a piece I absolutely fell in love with and bought. The cool thing about this art piece, is 12 years later I still love the art as much as the first day I bought it. (unfortunately I can’t find a photo of it in time for this post) but…. , I have other photos of Trine’s work and I know you will admire her work and her story as much as I do.

Trine Bumiller

Who ART You?

How did you grow up?
I grew up in Ohio with a fairly normal family, although my father traveled internationally a lot making travel documentaries (and we sometimes traveled with him) and he traveled all over the US to screen them. My mother is from Denmark, which is how I got the spelling of my name. I am the second of four girls.

I became an artist because…
I honestly couldn’t think of anything else I would rather do. I was lucky to have parents who told me to study what ever I was passionate about.

What brought you to art? My parents both appreciated art and design quite a bit. My father had an architecture degree and made beautiful architectural renderings, he taught me to paint and draw very early. My mother taught me to sew and encouraged me. I thought I was good at it and I loved doing it so I pursued it.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go.
I don’t really have trouble letting go. I am just glad when they find good homes. I’m lucky to have some major pieces in public collections here so I can always visit! I always think my best work is work I haven’t made yet so I’m always looking forward, not back.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be and why?
I think Georgia O’Keefe or Agnes Martin. They both found a connection with the land and were able to maintain their isolation and privacy while having a larger audience for their work during their lifetimes. They pursued their own work relentlessly.

Who, what influences your art?
Nature, the outdoors, and the environment. 

What has art taught you?
How to see the world, how to see history, how to travel.

Favorite/best resources as an artist?
I use Dick Blick for most materials and their wood panels allowed me to switch from canvas to wood. Locally I go to Meiningers. Art books from RH Hamilton.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands?
I’m pretty in love with my large watercolor brush right now.

What medium do you use? Why?
I use oils. They are by far the most versatile in terms of a range of modes of application, and range of color, also range of transparency to opacity, thick to thin, shiny to matte.

What is your favorite subject matter?
I am interested in connectivity and finding meaning beyond the surface. Natural forms with concepts of memory and time.

What are you still hoping to learn?
How to really express myself in a passionate and powerful way.

When I think of art….
I think of my whole world, from what I do every day, to ho I make decisions about where to go what to do, what to read and what to see. Who to talk to and listen to.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect?
For me they are indecisively mixed. Business is the least fun, but it helps you to reach an audience, to allow you to keep making work, to expand your reach.

A defining moment in my life was ……
when I went to RISD. Everything I thought I knew about art was completely different that what I learned, but what I learned was that it was much greater and more amazing than I realized.

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was …
to find my own voice. 

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it?
I like to start with a clean studio; I keep notes in a journal that I write in every day: I do a lot of research and make studies before I start paintings. I gesso my panels with 20-40 coats of gesso and sanding in between.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by?
No

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future?
I am currently working on paintings of glaciers on sheer fabric to hang in an installation at the University of Colorado Art Museum in an exhibition about climate change. While I have worked on fabric before and with site specific installation, the scale of it (it will fill an entire gallery) feels new. I am excited about seeing something so solid and substantial rendered in a material so fragile and light. I am hoping the message is inherent in the work, even without knowing the subject.

Name: Trine Bumiller
Website: www.trinebumiller.com
IG: www.instagram.com/bumiller_art
FB: www.facebook.com/trinebumiller.artist/

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Who ART You? 19

I’ve really been enjoying learning about all these artists I’ve been posting about, some who are no longer with us, such as Joan Mitchell, but have left an indelible mark on the art world.

Unknown.jpeg

Joan Mitchell

Who ART You?

No Birds 1987/88

No Birds 1987/88

From Wikipedia:
Born 1925-1992 Joan Mitchell was born in Chicago, Illinois, the daughter of dermatologist James Herbert Mitchell and poet Marion Strobel Mitchell.  She enjoyed diving and skating growing up, and her art would later reflect this athleticism; one gallery owner commented that Mitchell "approached painting almost like a competitive sport"

Mitchell studied at Smith College in Massachusetts and The Art Institute of Chicago,[5] where she earned her BFA in 1947 and her MFA in 1950.  After moving to Manhattan in 1947, she wanted to study at Hans Hofmann's school in New York but, according to Jane Livingston in her 2002 essay ("The Paintings of Joan Mitchell"), Mitchell attended only one class and declared, "I couldn't understand a word he said so I left, terrified." A $2,000 travel fellowship allowed her to study in Paris and Provence in 1948—49, and she also traveled in Spain and Italy.

In her early years as a painter, she was influenced by Paul CézanneWassily KandinskyClaude MonetVincent van Gogh, and later by the work of Franz Kline and Willem de KooningJean-Paul Riopelle, among others.

Her paintings are expansive, often covering multiple panels. Landscape was the primary influence on her subject matter. She painted on unprimed canvas or white ground with gestural, sometimes violent brushwork. She has described a painting as "an organism that turns in space".

An admirer of van Gogh's work, Mitchell observed in one of his final paintings – Wheatfield with Crows(1890) – the symbology of death, suicide, hopelessness, depression and darkness. With her sense that Wheatfield with Crows was a suicide note, she painted a painting called No Birds as a response and as an homage.

After moving to Paris in 1959, Mitchell began painting in a studio on the rue Fremicourt. During the period between 1960 and 1964, she moved away from the all-over style and bright colors of her earlier compositions, instead using sombre hues and dense central masses of color to express something inchoate and primordial. The marks on these works were said to be extraordinary: "The paint flung and squeezed on to the canvases, spilling and spluttering across their surfaces and smeared on with the artist's fingers." The artist herself referred to the work created in this period of the early 1960s as "very violent and angry," but by 1964 she was "trying to get out of a violent phase and into something else." 

Mitchell said that she wanted her paintings "to convey the feeling of the dying sunflower" and "some of them come out like young girls, very coy ... they're very human."

Already during her lifetime, Mitchell was rewarded with a considerable degree of commercial success. Between 1960 and 1962, Mitchell earned over $30,000 in art sales, a considerable figure for a woman painter at that time.  Works by Mitchell fetched $239.8 million in sales from 1985 through 2013, according to figures compiled by Bloomberg. In June 2018, nine of Mitchell's paintings were expected to sell for more than $70 million at the world's largest modern art fair Art Basel.

Untitled (1960)  sold at auction for $11.9 million in 2014, a record for a female artist.

Untitled (1960) sold at auction for $11.9 million in 2014, a record for a female artist.

Mitchell married American publisher Barney Rosset in 1949 in Paris. Rosset was a Chicago-born American entrepreneur who became, at Mitchell's urging, the owner of the publishing house Grove Press, perhaps best known as the American publisher of the novel Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller. They divorced in 1952. Although she remained active in the burgeoning art scene of 1950s New York, Mitchell spent increasing amounts of time travelling and working in France. In 1955, Mitchell moved to France to join Canadian painter Jean-Paul Riopelle, with whom she had a long, rich, and tumultuous relationship (from 1955 to 1979). They maintained separate homes and studios, but had dinner and drank together daily.

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Who ART You? 18

Louise Bourgeois was a stranger to me until I had the extraordinary opportunity to visit an exhibit of her work in the Hauser Wirth Museum and was immediately fascinated with her. practice. I’m so excited to share this article [https://www.artsy.net/article/artsy-editorial-artist-louise-bourgeois] I found on the internet by Karen Kedmey that speaks to her life story and includes Louise’s thoughts on “How To Be An Artist.” Enjoy.

Louise Bourgeois

Louise Bourgeois

Who ART You?

Louise Bourgeois life spanned nearly the entire 20th century, and when she died in 2010 at a commanding 98 years old, she left behind an evocative body of work and writings in which many other artists have sought insight and inspiration.

Those texts bring context to her life’s work, which was deeply autobiographical. Born in Paris in 1911 to a family of tapestry restorers, Bourgeois would see her father leave home to fight for the French army during World War I; she would always carry the memories of visiting him and of her mother’s steadfastness (and anxiety) through this and other trying times to come. 

In 1922, her father invited an English tutor to join the family and soon began a decade-long affair with her (among other women). His wartime absence and his infidelities, together with her mother’s prolonged illness—she contracted Spanish flu around 1920, and never fully recovered—and her silence about these betrayals, profoundly affected Bourgeois. These are among the memories and experiences that would shape her life and, inseparable from it, her art. 

“My childhood has never lost its magic, it has never lost its mystery, and it has never lost its drama,” she once said. “All my work of the last fifty years, all my subjects, have found their inspiration in my childhood.”

Here are some of the artistic lessons that can be drawn from Bourgeois’s work and writings. 

Lesson #1: Make art about your life

The Young Girl 2006

The Young Girl 2006

In the numerous interviews, essays, and diary entries that form the written record of her approach to artmaking, Bourgeois maintained that art and life were one. “Art is not about art. Art is about life, and that sums it up,” she declared. Her insistence that her art was a daily exorcism of her experiences, traumas, and inner turmoil, set her apart from most of her peers early in her career. In the 1940s and ’50s, Abstract Expressionism reigned in New York and, along with it, attitudes that direct references to one’s life had no place in a work of art.

Every element in Bourgeois’s compositions emerged from the details of her life. The tresses tied in knots or snaking Medusa-like from a female figure’s head represent her exceptionally long hair and shifting emotional states. Trees are metaphors for her children and her responsibility to them. In a series of prints from the early 2000s, “The Laws of Nature,” cartoonish S&M scenes between a dominatrix and her lover-victim encapsulate her experience of love and marriage, an amalgam of pleasure, pain, succor, and abuse. 

So essential to her were these visual manifestations of her self that Bourgeois went so far as to suggest that art need have no other purpose: “The artist is lucky to be able to overcome his demons without hurting anybody. Instead of being grateful, they want to make money. It is ridiculous!

Lesson #2: Find inspiration in all of nature, including spiders and maggots

Spider 1995 Spider 2007
In an untitled work on paper from 1989, Bourgeois drew three fat maggots, their pale bodies stark against a black background. Recognizing that some might recoil at this tender depiction of creatures associated with rot and death, she countered that maggots are “not a negative subject at all…however hard things are, there is still hope if you believe in maggots. Something has decomposed, and it is from that decomposition that hope comes again.”

Bourgeois’s abiding love of all of nature stemmed from a childhood spent surrounded by it. She grew up in homes near rivers and tending the plot that her father carved out for her in a garden filled with fruit trees, edible plants, flowers, and an assortment of animals. The flora and fauna of her childhood terrain, and the rivers, mountains, and clouds, became stand-ins in her work for the artist, her family, and her emotions. “The metaphors in nature are very strong…nature is a mode of communication,” she once said.

Perhaps foremost among her nature-derived motifs was the spider. “I see the spider as the savior,” she explained. “It saves us from mosquitoes. But if you want to detest spiders, it’s not against the law.” 

Spiders appeared in her drawings and prints beginning in the 1940s and, by the 1990s, had become a frequent presence across all of her work—including as monumental sculptures that might make arachnophobes quake. But Bourgeois saw spiders as protective, clever, and inventive, qualities she loved in her mother and wanted to emulate in her own homemaking. 

Lesson #3: Revisit the same themes over and over again (but also keep experimenting)

Ste. Sébastienne, 1998 The Couple, 2003
Like the spider she so admired, Bourgeois wove a web of personal meaning out of her repeating use of images, abstract forms, and colors. “There is a development. The repeating of one image and another image…means that what you cannot say in words, you try to put in visual terms,” she once reflected. “You have to repeat and repeat; otherwise people don’t understand what you are talking about.” Her use of repetition also reflects the vividness with which her past informed her adulthood and her need to heal herself by revisiting specific, enduring childhood traumas.

But her return to pregnant bellies, spirals, spiders, and the color blue—a handful of the elements in her lexicon—was always coupled with her embrace of wide-ranging materials and processes. Bourgeois sculpted in wood, marble, and, most provocatively perhaps, latex, among other materials. She made prints using techniques ranging from lithography to intaglio, experimenting with various papers and sometimes augmenting the compositions with hand-applied gouache, watercolor, and pencil. When she was in her eighties, she culled old clothes from her closets to incorporate into her sculptures and to cut apart and reassemble into expressively patterned pages of fabric books, returning to her roots in a family who made its living from fabrics.

Lesson #4: Never stop making art

Louise Bourgeois at her printing press

Louise Bourgeois at her printing press

Among Bourgeois’s countless drawings is one centered on a small, geometrical machine, a self-portrait of a sort. In her explanation of its meaning, she once wrote, “So this is it: How am I going to be self-operating all by myself? Well, I can do that if I can invent something that keeps me going.” So she did: Her art was the invention that kept her going; and death was the only thing that finally stopped her from making art.

In the 1990s, when Bourgeois was well into her eighties, she debuted new bodies of work, among them enthralling sculptures of spiders and room-like installations that she called “cells.” When her eyesight started failing in her nineties, rather than give up her reinvigorated printmaking production, she increased the size of the plates so she could see them better and concentrated on soft-ground etching, a technique that is easier on the hand. 

At roughly five feet tall and up to nearly two feet wide, the many prints she produced in the last four years of her life show the sure, powerful hand of an artist hardly finished making her experiences and emotions tangible.

by Karen Kedmey

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Who ART You? 17

If you follow me on IG, or get my newsletter, you have probably seen that I am doing a retreat in MARRAKECH on MAR 6-10th, “The Art of Business, Slow Travel, and Self-Discovery” with my good friend and very talented Branding Expert and Business Coach, Katherine Suarez @katherinesuarez, and @nomadatelier. https://www.nomadatelier.com/marrakechretreat (If you would like more information or an invitation to our retreat, please message me at jan@janmccarthy ).

In our reserach about interesting and unique companies we would like to explore, we discovered this artist Laurence Leenaert that I’m crazy about! Here’s the story! and in full disclosure, this article is from Elle Decor by Di Valentina Mariani 11/03/18

intervista-laurence-leenaert-marchio-lifestyle-lrnce-oggetto-editoriale-800x600-1526061878.jpg

Laurence Leenaert

Who ART You?

Why Marrakesh?
Working from a Medina in Marrakech wouldn’t seem to be the best strategy to achieve international recognition. However, if we look at LRNCE, the modern accessories and textile line by Laurence Leenaert, it will be clear why it is actually so successful. Her unique modern taste comes from tradition and is influenced by Picasso-inspired art. 

Laurence came a long way, from studying at KASK in Gent, Belgium, and working as an intern at fashion brand Bless in Berlin. Since then, she decided to have her own brand and to work on her own bag line. Her design developed quickly, from focusing on lines and grids to embracing more abstract, almost human-like shapes that today decorate textiles, rugs, ceramics, kimonos, sandals and everything else she sells in her studio-showroom and in stores around the world, from Paris to New York City, Sweden and Switzerland. 

She’s an artist with a big heart, in love with design and we asked her to share her vision with us in an interview. 

Laurence, what’s LRNCE?
LRNCE is a lifestyle brand based in Marrakech focused on interior decoration and accessories. We revolutionised the aim of materials, spontaneously combining them to create unique design pieces. As we manufacture them in North Africa, we try our best to capture the local artisanal spirit and to remain close to the products hand-making process.

Why Marrakech? 
After a magical trip in the desert with my sister, I decided I was going to come back. So one day I booked a flight, shipped my sewing machine and stayed there an entire month working on some new projects. Once back in Belgium, I realised I couldn’t live there anymore and I moved to Morocco. I initially wanted to go to the desert but it was really not feasible to work there so I opted for Marrakech. At the beginning it was hard: the culture is very different and my financial resources were limited. After a while, by working on new projects and by meeting the right people it all worked out. 

From opening your online store three years ago, you now have your own showroom...
Yes, opening the showroom was a great chance for us to personally meet our clients, and what’s better than that? Every day we meet interesting people working in the creative sector and many, many young people.

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Who ART You? 16

Annie paints so vividly I almost feel I’m there. Hope you are as inspired by her art as I am!

 Annie Wildey

WHO  ART YOU?

 

How did you grow up?
I grew up in Wolverhampton, a small industrial town right in the middle of the UK, It’s about as far away from the sea as you can get. As a child I often dreamed of living by the seaside!

Looking back I’d say we were quite poor financially, but we weren’t short on love laughter and kindness!. I grew up in a working class family, and I’m the youngest of 4 children. My mom worked part-time in the evenings cleaning hospitals, and my dad was a truck driver. No one in the family was artistic or really appreciated the arts,  so I was a bit of an anomaly. There was an age gap between my siblings and me, so I spent a lot of time entertaining myself with drawing and coloring books. So much so that neighbors would give my mom any spare coloring or sketchbooks they would find lying around the house!

I became an artist because……
It’s really who I am and what I’m good at. I feel at peace when I am making art, I feel connected and in the flow. When I don’t create, I feel anxious, and out of sorts.

What brought you to art?
My high school art teacher noticed my natural ability and knew to nurture it and encourage me. Exposing me to the possibilities and opportunities available in the arts.  It really was the only thing I excelled at, so I’m thankful for his guidance in those formative years.  We have remained life long friends some 30 years later!

While I did go to art school, I ended up on another career path, working for many years in marketing for the British Government in New York. Art was very much a part-time activity during that time, but one that I increasingly needed to do more and more of.  It wasn’t until I was 40 that I took a big leap of faith to pursue art full-time. 

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go.
On the whole I’m not precious about my own work, and I’m happy to let it go out into the world. That said there have been a few favorites over the years.  There is usually one in every series, or one that marks a significant shift in direction.  One piece in particular that I hesitated to let go of actually found it’s way back in to the studio after two years! While I was surprised it didn’t sell, I was secretly thrilled by its return and it is one I’ll keep in my own collection. 

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why?
Ohh hard to choose!, while I’d love to jump back to New York city in the 50’s and 60’s or France in the 18/1900’s, I’m gonna pick a contemporary painter Jenny Saville.  Her large-scale gestural figurative paintings are amazing and I would love to have an insider’s view of her studio practice and career.

Who, what influences your art?
First and foremost I’d say it’s an emotional connection or response to something that makes me want to capture or convey that creatively.

What has art taught you?  
To be an observer of my inner and outer world, be still, look, listen, feel.
Embrace the process, enjoy and welcome little accidents.
Let go of expectations, and go with the flow.
Enjoy my own company ;-)

Favorite/best resources as an artist?
Anything that supports and nurtures my creative life is essential. I love listening to creative podcasts, and value a community of other artists, virtual or in person.  I would also add that I worked with a creative life coach for many years. This helped me make the transition from a career in business to fine art.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands?
Hmmm, I think the magic happens in the space between control and freedom, so I’m always open to finding new ways to make marks, but I do love a nice palette knife to work with.

What medium do you use? Why?
I enjoy working in many mediums, but right now I spend most of my time working in oils, I love the buttery quality of paint, pushing and pulling it around a canvas. As a printmaker I also love the spontaneity and directness of monotype.  I find both mediums provide an opportunity to explore and expand my technical vocabulary. Switching between disciplines keeps things fresh. This year I want to get back to life drawing for pleasure.

What is your favorite subject matter?
This question is very much connected to an earlier one “what influences your art’ I think as artists we have themes or content that we explore through our subject matter. I’m very much interested in light, movement, and emotion that I currently explore through landscape /seascape.

What are you still hoping to learn?
Apart from continuing to learn and experiment creatively, as artists we are entrepreneurs and small business owners, so I’m always looking to be better at “the business of being an artist”

When I think of art, I ………….
Feel alive.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect?
Oh boy, as a full-time artist everything is interconnected, the challenge I have is making sure there is balance!

A defining moment in my life was when………..
I decided to walk away from an 18-year career, at 40 to pursue an MFA.  It was a huge decision for me. I don’t love change and I crave security. I knew I needed support so I sought out a creative coach to help me navigate the journey.  The desire was there but so was fear.  Fortunately things began to fall into place, I was definitely in the flow and it became abundantly clear which path I should take. And here I am!

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was……..
1.   
If you paint what moves you, chances are others will be moved by it too.   
2.    Show up, do the work.
3.    Build a collection of your own work by keeping one or two pieces from each body of work. You never know when that museum retrospective might happen – ha ha, I should be so lucky ;-)
4.    Manage your money well.

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it?
I don’t have a ritual as such, other than needing a couple cups of coffee to get me going in the morning. But I know mornings are the best time for me to be creative.  There is something about knowing I have the whole day ahead of me.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by?
There are so many! but this one I think captures the blissful creative moment that I think many of us hope to tap into when we walk into the studio.“Art is standing with one hand extended into the universe and one hand extended into the world, and letting ourselves be a conduit for passing energy” Albert Einstein
I like to think of it as getting out of my own way!

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future?
I’m currently working on a very large commission along with a new body of work for two upcoming shows. I also plan to release new prints and small works online throughout the year. 

Name: Annie Wildey
Website:  anniewildey.com
IG:  anniewildey
FB: anniewildeystudio

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Who ART You? 15

Frida Kahlo is one of the most well known painters in the world. The movie about her life certainly helped many come to know her work and life story as does visiting her childhood home and the one she shared with her husband Rivera which are both open to the public in Mexico City.

I had the opportunity to visit both when I was in Mexico City to host a Creative Art Session at a Creative Escape put on by @shopseektheuniq where we channeled the spirit of Frida Kahlo. Both houses are powerful and inspiring and give you insight into her work and share scenes from her everyday life.

Frida Kahlo did not sell many paintings in her lifetime, although she painted occasional portraits on commission. She had only one solo exhibition in Mexico in her lifetime, in 1953, just a year before her death at the age of 47. 

Today, her works sell for very high prices. In May 2006, Frida Kahlo self-portrait, Roots, was sold for $5.62 million at a Sotheby's auction in New York, setting a record as the most expensive Latin American work ever purchased at auction, and also makes Frida Kahlo one of the highest-selling woman in art.

Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo

Who ART You?

From www.fridakahlo.org
Mexican artist Frida Kahlo is remembered for her self-portraits, pain and passion, and bold, vibrant colors. She is celebrated in Mexico for her attention to Mexican and indigenous culture and by feminists for her depiction of the female experience and form. 

Kahlo, who suffered from polio as a child, nearly died in a bus accident as a teenager. She suffered multiple fractures of her spine, collarbone and ribs, a shattered pelvis, broken foot and dislocated shoulder. She began to focus heavily on painting while recovering in a body cast. In her lifetime, she had 30 operations. 

Life experience is a common theme in Kahlo's approximately 200 paintings, sketches and drawings. Her physical and emotional pain are depicted starkly on canvases, as is her turbulent relationship with her husband, fellow artist Diego Rivera, who she married twice. Of her 143 paintings, 55 are self-portraits. 

The devastation to her body from the bus accident is shown in stark detail in The Broken Column. Kahlo is depicted nearly naked, split down the middle, with her spine presented as a broken decorative column. Her skin is dotted with nails. She is also fitted with a surgical brace. 

Kahlo's first self-portrait was Self-Portrait in a Velvet Dress in 1926. It was painted in the style of 19th Century Mexican portrait painters who themselves were greatly influenced by the European Renaissance masters. She also sometimes drew from the Mexican painters in her use of a background of tied-back drapes. Self-Portrait - Time Flies (1929), Portrait of a a Woman in White (1930) and Self-Portrait Dedicated to Leon Trotsky (1937) all bear this background. 

In her second-self portrait, "Time Flies," Kahlo uses a folk style and vibrant colors. She wears peasant clothing, and the red, white and green in the painting are the colors of the Mexican flag. 

During her life, self portrait is a subject that Frida Kahlo always returns to, as artists have always returned to beloved themes - Vincent van Gogh his Sun FlowersPaul Cezanne his Apples, and Claude Monet his Water Lilies.

Frida and Diego: Love and Pain

Kahlo and Rivera had a tumultuous relationship, marked by multiple affairs on both sides. Self-Portrait With Cropped Hair (1940), Kahlo is depicted in a man's suit, holding a pair of scissors, with her fallen hair around the chair in which she sits. This represents the times she would cut the hair Rivera loved when he had affairs. 

The 1937 painting Memory, the Heart, shows Kahlo's pain over her husband's affair with her younger sister Christina. A large broken heart at her feet shows the intensity of Kahlo's anguish. Frido and Diego divorced in 1939, but reunited a year later and remarried. The Two Fridas (1939) depicts Kahlo twice, shortly after the divorce. One Frida wears a costume from the Tehuana region of Mexico, representing the Frida that Diego loved. The other Frida wears a European dress as the woman who Diego betrayed and rejected. Later, she is back in Tehuana dress in Self-Portrait as a Tehuana (1943) and Self Portrait(1948). 

Pre-Columbian artifacts were common both in the Kahlo/Rivera home (Diego collected sculptures and idols, and Frido collected Jewelry) and in Kahlo's paintings. She wore jewelry from this period in "Self-Portrait -- Time Flies" (1926), Self-Portrait With Monkey (1938) and Self-Portrait With Braid (1941), among others. Other Pre-Columbian artifacts are found in The Four Inhabitants of Mexico City (1938), Girl With Death Mask (1938) and Self-Portrait With Small Monkeys (1945).

When asked why she painted so many self portraits, Frida Kahlo said, “I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best."

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Who ART You? 14

This artist is one of the most fascinating and creative women I’ve ever seen. Her story is deep and emotional, and a testament that you aren’t a product of your past and the future is whatever you make it. I am completely wowed by Yayoi Kusama and I know you will be too!

Yayoi Kusama

Who ART You?

From wikipedia:
This is a long read but ohhhh, so worth it!

Yayoi Kusama (草間 彌生 Kusama Yayoi, born 22 March 1929) is a Japanese contemporary artist who works primarily in sculpture and installation, but is also active in painting, performance, film, fashion, poetry, fiction, and other arts. Her work is based in conceptual artand shows some attributes of feminism, minimalism, surrealism, Art Brut, pop art, and abstract expressionism, and is infused with autobiographical, psychological, and sexual content. She has been acknowledged as one of the most important living artists to come out of Japan.

Raised in Matsumoto, Kusama trained at the Kyoto School of Arts and Crafts in a traditional Japanese painting style called nihonga. Kusama was inspired, however, by American Abstract Impressionism. She moved to New York City in 1958 and was a part of the New York avant-garde scene throughout the 1960s, especially in the pop-art movement. Embracing the rise of the hippie counterculture of the late 1960s, she came to public attention when she organized a series of happenings in which naked participants were painted with brightly colored polka dots. Since the 1970s, Kusama has continued to create art, most notably installations in various museums around the world.

New York City: 1957–1972

After living in Tokyo and France, Kusama left Japan at the age of 27 for the United States. She has stated that she began to consider Japanese society "too small, too servile, too feudalistic, and too scornful of women." In 1957, she moved to Seattle, where she had an exhibition of paintings at the Zoe Dusanne Gallery. She stayed there for a year before moving on to New York City, following correspondence with Georgia O'Keeffe in which she professed an interest in joining the limelight of the city, and sought O'Keeffe's advice. During her time in the US, she quickly established her reputation as a leader in the avant-garde movement and received praise for her work from the anarchist art critic Herbert Read. In 1961 she moved her studio into the same building as Donald Judd and sculptor Eva Hesse; Hesse became a close friend. In the early 1960s Kusama began to cover items such as ladders, shoes and chairs with white phallic protrusions.Despite the micromanaged intricacy of the drawings, she turned them out fast and in bulk, establishing a rhythm of productivity which she still maintains. She established other habits too, like having herself routinely photographed with new work and regularly appearing in public wearing her signature bobbed wigs and colorful, avant-garde fashions.

A polka-dot has the form of the sun, which is a symbol of the energy of the whole world and our living life, and also the form of the moon, which is calm. Round, soft, colorful, senseless and unknowing. Polka-dots become movement ... Polka dots are a way to infinity.

Since 1963, Kusama has continued her series of Mirror/Infinity rooms. In these complex infinity mirror installations, purpose-built rooms lined with mirrored glass contain scores of neon-colored balls, hanging at various heights above the viewer. Standing inside on a small platform, an observer sees light repeatedly reflected off the mirrored surfaces to create the illusion of a never-ending space. During the following years, Kusama was enormously productive, and by 1966 she was experimenting with room-size, freestanding installations that incorporated mirrors, lights, and piped-in music. She counted Judd and Joseph Cornell among her friends and supporters. However, she did not profit financially from her work. Around this time, Kusama was hospitalized regularly from overwork, and O'Keeffe convinced her own dealer Edith Herbert to purchase several works in order to help Kusama stave off financial hardship.

In the 1960s, Kusama organized outlandish happenings in conspicuous spots like Central Park and the Brooklyn Bridge, often involving nudity and designed to protest the Vietnam War. In one, she wrote an open letter to Richard Nixon offering to have sex with him if he would stop the Vietnam war. Between 1967 and 1969 she concentrated on performances held with the maximum publicity, usually involving Kusama painting polka dots on her naked performers, as in the Grand Orgy to Awaken the Dead at the MoMA (1969), which took place at the Sculpture Garden of the Museum of Modern Art. During the unannounced event, eight performers under Kusama's direction removed their clothing, stepped nude into a fountain, and assumed poses mimicking the nearby sculptures by Picasso, Giacometti, and Maillol.

In 1968, Kusama presided over the happening Homosexual Wedding at the Church of Self-obliteration at 33 Walker Street in New York and performed alongside Fleetwood Mac and Country Joe and the Fish at the Fillmore East in New York City. She opened naked painting studios and a gay social club called the Kusama 'Omophile Kompany (kok).

In 1966, Kusama first participated in the Venice Biennale for its 33rd edition. Her Narcissus Garden comprised hundreds of mirrored spheres outdoors in what she called a "kinetic carpet". As soon as the piece was installed on a lawn outside the Italian pavilion, Kusama, dressed in a golden kimono, began selling each individual sphere for 1,200 lire (US$2), until the Biennale organizers put an end to her enterprise. Narcissus Garden was as much about the promotion of the artist through the media as it was an opportunity to offer a critique of the mechanization and commodification of the art market.

During her time in New York, Kusama had a brief relationship with artist Donald Judd. She then began a passionate, but platonic, relationship with the surrealist artist Joseph Cornell. She was twenty-six years his junior—they would call each other daily, sketch each other, and he would send personalized collages to her. Their lengthy association would last until his death in 1972.

Her organically abstract paintings of one or two colors (the Infinity Nets series), which she began upon arriving in New York, garnered comparisons to the work of Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, and Barnett Newman. When she left New York she was practically forgotten as an artist until the late 1980s and 1990s, when a number of retrospectives revived international interest.

Following the success of the Japanese pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 1993, a dazzling mirrored room filled with small pumpkin sculptures in which she resided in color-coordinated magician's attire, Kusama went on to produce a huge, yellow pumpkin sculpture covered with an optical pattern of black spots. The pumpkin came to represent for her a kind of alter-ego or self-portrait. Kusama's later installation I'm Here, but Nothing (2000–2008) is a simply furnished room consisting of table and chairs, place settings and bottles, armchairs and rugs, however its walls are tattooed with hundreds of fluorescent polka dots glowing in the UV light. The result is an endless infinite space where the self and everything in the room is obliterated.

The multi-part floating work Guidepost to the New Space, a series of rounded "humps" in fire-engine red with white polka dots, was displayed in Pandanus Lake. Perhaps one of Kusama's most notorious works, various versions of Narcissus Garden have been presented worldwide venues including Le Consortium, Dijon, 2000; Kunstverein Braunschweig, 2003; as part of the Whitney Biennial in Central Park, New York in 2004; and at the Jardin de Tuileries in Paris, 2010.

In her ninth decade, Kusama has continued to work as an artist. She has harkened back to earlier work by returning to drawing and painting; her work remained innovative and multi-disciplinary, and a 2012 exhibition displayed multiple acrylic-on-canvas works. Also featured was an exploration of infinite space in her Infinity Mirror rooms. These typically involve a cube-shaped room lined in mirrors, with water on the floor and flickering lights; these features suggest a pattern of life and death.

Yellow Pumpkin, Naoshima (Japan)

In 2017, a 50-year retrospective of her work opened at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, DC. The exhibit featured six Infinity Mirror rooms, and is scheduled to travel to five museums in the US and Canada. On 25 February 2017, Kusama's All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkinsexhibit, one of the six components to her Infinity Mirror rooms at the Hirshhorn Museum, was temporarily closed for three days following damage to one of the exhibit's glowing pumpkin sculptures. The room, which measures 13 square feet (1.2 m2) and is filled with over 60 pumpkin sculptures, is one of the museum's most popular attractions ever. Allison Peck, a spokeswoman for the Hirshhorn, said in an interview that the museum "has never had a show with that kind of visitor demand", with the room averaging over 8,000 visitors between its opening and the date of its temporary closing. While there were conflicting media reports about the cost of the damaged sculpture and how exactly it was broken, Allison Peck stated that "there is no intrinsic value to the individual piece. It is a manufactured component to a larger piece." The exhibit was reconfigured to make up for the missing sculpture, and a new one was to be produced for the exhibit by Kusama.

Also in 2017, the Yayoi Kusama Museum opened; it is in Tokyo and features her works.

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Who ART You? 13

I’ve followed Edge of the Meadow for a long time and always loved her art and creativity, but now that she has shared her story, I’m even more impressed with the woman behind the brand.

Anjali Walton, Edge Of The Meadow

Who  ART You?

How did you grow up?
My parents moved  from India to the UK in the 1960’s. My father worked as a civil engineer and I spent the early years of my life in the North of England. Five years later, we moved to Hong Kong. It was a fantastic city to grow up to in. Being part of the ex pat community meant I met people from so many different countries. There were 29 different nationalities in my class alone at school! 

I became an artist because……
It provided me with a focus. I always feel complete and grounded when I’m drawing or painting. I love the joy it brings to others too! 

What brought you to art?
I used to love watching people draw or paint. At pre school I remember seeing a huge box of coloured pencils (in perfect rainbow order) on a desk and couldn’t resist having a go! Art was always my favourite subject at school. I went on to do a degree in fashion and textile design.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go. 
Egon Schiele’s “The Kiss” Initially I loved the decorative patterns, the ovals and linear shapes. Art historians say the bright gold around the figures has a likeness to the gold used in medieval icons. The deeper gold in the background relates to the cosmos and suggests that the couple are suspended in the moment. Being a pattern addict  I am still drawn to the random placement of the shapes and colour.  The motifs are influenced by traditional Egyptian, Byzantine and Greek art but used in a contemporary style in this painting, mixing traditional figurative drawing with abstract pattern. 

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why? 
The textile designer Lucienne Day. She developed a new style of abstract pattern making in Britain during the 1950’s and 60’s, when modern print design was popular.  This must have been an exciting time to be a textile designer. She also created rugs, ceramics, wallpaper and large scale silk mosaics. Her career lasted six decades! 

Who, what influences your art? 
I think people who have a style that is completely unique to them inspires me to create a style that is completely unique to me. I love Orla Kiely’s use of colour and the way she updates vintage style. I grew up in a multicultural, cosmopolitan environment, So I am influenced by colour and pattern from other cultures and genres. I like to explore what happens when these colours and genres are mixed up. For example my main collections use motifs and images from nature in the English countryside, mixed with vibrant colours from India, which I believe is what makes them unique! 

What has art taught you? 
Art is a response to what is happening around us. It communicates our ideas in an imaginative way. There is no right or wrong but you have to be utterly true to yourself to get the essence of you message across. 

Favorite/best resources as an artist? 

My DSLR camera? Life is busy and I like to capture fleeting glimpses of moments that are easily missed! 

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands? 
A fine black sketching pen. When I sit down to sketch a still life, there comes a moment when I stop thinking about what I’m drawing on the paper, and focus solely on the subject matter. That’s when the magic happens, and I create autonomous abstract lines that capture the essence of the subject.

What medium do you use? Why?
Coloured ink and pen. I love adding different coloured droplets to water colour paper and seeing the texture and colours that calmly emerge. The unpredictability of this process is exciting, I’m easily pleased! 

What is your favorite subject matter?
Nature and the elements! As a print and pattern designer, images of nature provides endless inspiration for shapes, colour and texture. 

What are you still hoping to learn?
I use colour instinctively when I create surface pattern designs. I’d love to learn more about colour theory, and colour trend predictions in the home and fashion industry. The socio political climate can influence colours. In 2017 Pantone’s colour of the year was green, conveying the message to take action with climate change and save our planet. It also resonates with a desire to connect with nature. There is a growing trend to fill our homes and workplace with plants and foliage. Pantone have recently introduced a vibrant coral colour for 2019 to reflect health, vitality and well being. I think this is a fascinating area in design and I’d love to know more about how it works.

When I think of art, I ....... 
am overwhelmed at how much there is to explore in this subject! However creating and appreciating art is an utterly fulfilling experience.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? 
I think juggling business, creativity and family life is an art in itself! Finding the perfect balance is an ongoing process. A lot of my inspiration comes when I am out walking the dogs or even doing household chores. I created a print motif for a silk scarf inspired from the shadow patterns I noticed on a washing basket. Cooking and preparing food opens up a wealth of design ideas. A red cabbage chopped in half is a pattern lovers dream. The logo ( and name ) for my business came from a  meadow I used to walk around with my children when they were toddlers! I make time for creativity to flow when the children are at school and the house is quiet. I find that if all is well with family life the rest falls into place. 

A defining moment in my life was when………..
I became a mother! 

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was…….
Let go of your inhibitions. 

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it?
I do 20 minutes of power yoga or walk the dogs after the school run. Before I sit down to design I clear my space of clutter and make sure there is lots of natural light streaming through.  I gather all my inspiration boards and pin them up on the  wall. Then I can begin.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by?
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has it’s own reason for existing” Albert Einstein 

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future?
I’ll be launching  a brand new collection of colourful, printed fabrics & kitchen textiles in the Spring. 

Name:Anjali Walton
Website: www.edgeofthemeadow.co.uk
IG: https://www.instagram.com/edgeofthemeadow/
FB: https://www.facebook.com/edgeofthemeadow 

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Who ART You? 12

She is one of the best knownand recognizable artists in the world and I when I think of her, I think of flowers? But of course, she was famous for so much more! Know who she is? Let me introduce you to Georgia O’Keefe.

Who ART You?

Georgia O’Keefe November 15, 1887 – March 6, 1986
Harpers Bazarr wrote this about her. “A seminal figure of American Modernism, in 1915 Georgia O'Keeffe was one of the very first American artists to produce a purely abstract work of art, in contrast to the dominant movement of American realism. In Music, Pink and Blue from 1918, O'Keefe abstracts a floral subject with extreme cropping, producing an archway of colorful petals that hum with a musical energy suggested by the title. The theories of Russian artist Wassily Kandinsky in part inspired O'Keeffe to explore "the idea that music could be translated into something for the eye," to achieve pure expression free of other external references.”

From Wikipedia: Georgia Totto O'Keeffe was an American artist. She was best known for her paintings of enlarged flowersNew York skyscrapers, and New Mexico landscapes. O'Keeffe has been recognized as the "Mother of American modernism".

In 1905, O'Keeffe began her serious formal art training at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and then the Art Students League of New York, but she felt constrained by her lessons that focused on recreating or copying what was in nature. In 1908, unable to fund further education, she worked for two years as a commercial illustrator, and then spent seven years between 1911 and 1918 teaching in Virginia, Texas, and South Carolina. During that time, she studied art during the summers between 1912 and 1914 and was introduced to the principles and philosophies of Arthur Wesley Dow, who espoused created works of art based upon personal style, design, and interpretation of subjects, rather than trying to copy or represent them. This caused a major change in the way she felt about and approached art, as seen in the beginning stages of her watercolors from her studies at the University of Virginia and more dramatically in the charcoal drawings that she produced in 1915 that led to total abstraction. Alfred Stieglitz, an art dealer and photographer, held an exhibit of her works in 1917. Over the next couple of years, she taught and continued her studies at the Teachers College, Columbia University in 1914 and 1915.

She moved to New York in 1918 at Stieglitz's request and began working seriously as an artist. They developed a professional relationship—he promoted and exhibited her works—and a personal relationship that led to their marriage in 1924. O'Keeffe created many forms of abstract art, including close-ups of flowers, such as the Red Canna paintings, that many found to represent women's genitalia, although O'Keeffe consistently denied that intention. The reputation of the portrayal of women's sexuality was also fueled by explicit and sensuous photographs that Stieglitz had taken and exhibited of O'Keeffe.

O'Keeffe and Stieglitz lived together in New York until 1929, when O'Keeffe began spending part of the year in the Southwest, which served as inspiration for her paintings of New Mexico landscapes and images of animal skulls, such as Cow's Skull: Red, White, and Blue and Ram's Head White Hollyhock and Little Hills. After Stieglitz's death, she lived permanently in New Mexico at Georgia O'Keeffe Home and Studio in Abiquiú, until the last years of her life when she lived in Santa Fe. In 2014, O'Keeffe's 1932 painting Jimson Weed sold for $44,405,000, more than three times the previous world auction record for any female artist. After her death, the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum was established in Santa Fe.

She began a series of watercolor paintings based upon the scenery and expansive views during her walks, including vibrant paintings she made of Palo Duro Canyon. O'Keeffe, who enjoyed sunrises and sunsets, developed a fondness for intense and nocturnal colors. Building upon a practice she began in South Carolina, O'Keeffe painted to express her most private sensations and feelings. Rather than sketching out a design before painting, she freely created designs. O'Keeffe continued to experiment until she believed she truly captured her feelings in the watercolor, Light Coming on the Plains No. I (1917)  She "captured a monumental landscape in this simple configuration, fusing blue and green pigments in almost indistinct tonal graduations that simulate the pulsating effect of light on the horizon of the Texas Panhandle," according to author Sharyn Rohlfsen Udall.

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Who ART You? 11

I’ve known Natashia for a few years and am always inspired by her creativity, talent and kindness. Her story is fascinating and I know you will think so too!

Natashia Miyazaki


Who
ART You?

How did you grow up?
In a very creative household, no TV and lots of art materials. My Parents were young and had a lot of talented friends that were constantly around as an inspiration and motivation. Sense of adventure and curiosity to learn was instilled form a young age. We did not have much money when I was growing up so making was the only way to keep us occupied, making something from nothing was a regular thing in my world. We would always make our Christmas gifts every year, we would not be able to go on trips or buy lots of toys so we would also make them ourselves, for example I made miniature houses for my dolls, with furniture out of paper. So even though it was financially hard my mother saw it as an opportunity to think outside the box and create what you wanted with your hands not be limited by the lack of funds. Only in hindsight I realised how lucky and valuable that was and how it set me up for the future, making me extremely resourceful and creative.

I became an artist because......
I became an artist because I was always destined to be, I don’t remember ever not creating, Passion for fashion followed shortly when tracing patterns with my mother. Living with my single mum meant that money was tight so we would make clothes as we could not afford to go out and buy the latest fashions, and why would you want to anyway, individualism and expression of self was what I thrived on, so it was a natural progression.

What brought you to art?
Ever since I can remember my mother was drawing, painting & making things. Our dining room was an Art-room filled with materials and tools. My parents also had a screen printing company which my dad still runs today. An eye for composition and graphics combined with a curiosity for fashion was a way to create my own art.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go.
I hand paint leather jackets, Every piece is a one off, I personally create the layout and freehand paint onto the jackets, adding individual twists or personalisations to each one. It’s a labor of love, everyone is its own work of art however it is bittersweet as I know that it is going to a good home.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why?
Coco Chanel, Iconic, badass with determination, resolute and unfaltering vision. Revolutionary designs, 1st to introduce androgynous style with an elegant execution. She is my idol.

Who, what influences your art?
Everything around me, movies, street style, architecture, art, life, people and most importantly travel.

What has art taught you?
Technique, Patience, Persistence, Creativity, Resourcefulness.

Favorite/best resources as an artist?
Internet, Pinterest, art galleries, pencil & paper.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands?
Pencil, pen, paint brush, fabric, pins & scissors.

What medium do you use? Why?
Fabric for draping, Sewing for designing & making garments. Pens, Pencils sketching, pattern making & illustrating designs. Computer Software for Graphic Design and CADs.

What is your favorite subject matter?
Clothes, textiles, dying & prints.

What are you still hoping to learn?
Pottery & the Piano.

When I think of art, I .............t
When I think of art I think of expression, story, feelings, subjectivity.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect?
For me it was always important to do what I love and what makes me happy, creating my form of art/ fashion, so naturally I followed a career that let me learn and explore my passion & talent. Working in the Fashion for 15 years, My life constantly intersects business, creativity & art. I hope to create an empire that continues to inspire and balance all of these aspects and share it with other like minded individuals to succeed together. It’s all about the journey.

A defining moment in my life was when...........
I relocated from London to Hong Kong for work. Moving to another country the other side of the world. Experiencing the different cultures and traveling around Southeast Asia. Traveling, discovery and learning fuel my soul and inspire my work.

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was........
Believe in yourself.

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it?
Get organised and focus my mind, start by researching imagery or go see some art, or watch a movie to trigger my imagination.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by?
So many! I don’t really have just one in mind. “Go hard or go home!” would be a good one!

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future?
More travel, more collaborative events, more fashion popups.

Name: Natashia Miyazaki
Website: www.hellopapermachine.com
IG: @papermachine_
FB: @hellopapermachine

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Who ART You? 10

Jennifer is a creative artist that lets her love of art shine through! I think you will agree!

photo credit goes to Anna Meyer Photo

Who  ART You?

Jennifer Allevato
How did you grow up?

I grew up with three very active, athletic brothers and two loving parents who always encouraged my introverted and creative ways. I was allowed to stay up past my bedtime as a child if I was in my room reading, and was often given art and craft supplies as gifts. While academics were encouraged and very important, I was never kept from creating.

I became an artist because……
I just couldn’t imagine being anything else. I tried; I missed creating.

What brought you to art?
What brought me to art as a career was the internet and the rise of online shopping. With the creation of websites like Etsy and the increase in popularity of online shopping, I found a way to make art an actual career, and not just something I dreamt of doing full-time

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go.
The first painting I ever sold: It was in college and a very important piece to me personally. It took me days to decide if I was willing to sell it, but ultimately decided that I couldn’t hold onto every piece that I liked or I’d never move forward.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why?
I don’t know that I’d want to BE another artist, but I always wanted to be able to meet Van Gogh and buy some paintings from him and tell him that his art matters.

Who, what influences your art?
I
am influenced by almost everything! Nature, color, design, travel. I love the post-impressionists and find so many contemporary artists inspiring.

What has art taught you?
That sharing your gifts with others is important.

Favorite/best resources as an artist?
I love listening to creative and small business podcasts. There are so many out there! Some of my favorites are “Online Marketing Made Easy,” “Letters from a Hopeful Creative,” and “Positively Creative with Dorothy Collier.”

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands?
A pencil. Sometimes my hand just goes nuts when I hold one, and I don’t even consciously register how it’s moving – it just moves.

What medium do you use? Why?
I work in acrylics and mixed media. I love the freedom of using any mediums that make the piece work. Pencils and paint work so well together!

What is your favorite subject matter?
Flowers. I just never grow tired of them. Some may see them as cliché, but I see them as timeless.

What are you still hoping to learn?
Everything! Each time I approach a new subject matter, it takes lots of trial and error. It’s the new challenges that make art fun.

When I think of art, I ………….
Feel complete.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? My business of creating art is my life! Also, coffee.

A defining moment in my life was when………..
My college painting professor told me I NEEDED to make art my major (I was leaning toward Psychology at the time). It was the first time someone other than my parents seemed to really believe in my art.

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was……..
To call myself an artist, even before I’m making money or doing it full-time. Just keep putting it out there, and people will begin to associate that with you.

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it?
Only that I need to get all my busy work out of the way first. I know that’s counterintuitive to what a lot of “experts” say, but if I have random tasks to do, I can’t concentrate on creating. Running errands first, answering emails, or doing laundry before I paint gives me the freedom to be able to just keep going once I begin and not have to stop until I feel ready.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by?
“I’m going to make everything around me beautiful - that will be my life.” – Elsie de Wolfe

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future?
I am working on several new painting and print collections for the year!

Name: Jennifer Allevato
Website: www.jenniferallevato.com
IG: @allevatojm
FB: https://www.facebook.com/JenniferAllevato/

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Who ART You? 09

Although I didn’t have the opportunity to interview Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun, (she was born 1755!) I find her fascinating! Exactly my kind of artist with an entrepreneurial spirit.

Madame_Vigee-Lebrun_and_her_daughter,_Jeanne_Lucia_(Julie).jpg

Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun.
Self-portait with her daughter in 1786

Who ART You?

Born in Paris, France, Louise Elizabeth Vigee Le Brun (1755–1842) is most known as a portrait painter during the utterly decadent Rococo period. She was Marie Antoinette's personal portrait painter, having painted the queen (and sometimes her family) more than 30 times.

From wikipiedia:
Born in Paris on 16 April 1755, Élisabeth Louise Vigée was the daughter of a portraitist and fan painter, Louis Vigée, from whom she received her first instruction.[1] Her mother, Jeanne (née Maissin) (1728–1800), was a hairdresser.[1] In 1760, at the age of five, she entered a convent, where she remained until 1766.[1] Her father died when she was twelve years old. In 1768, her mother married a wealthy jeweler, Jacques-François Le Sèvre, and shortly after, the family moved to the Rue Saint-Honoré, close to the Palais Royal.[5] In her memoir, Vigée Le Brun directly stated her feelings about her step-father: "I hated this man; even more so since he made use of my father's personal possessions. He wore his clothes, just as they were, without altering them to fit his figure."[6] During this period, Élisabeth benefited from the advice of Gabriel François DoyenJean-Baptiste Greuze, and Joseph Vernet, whose influence is evident in her portrait of her younger brother, Étienne Vigée (1773).[5]

By the time she was in her early teens, Élisabeth was painting portraits professionally.[7] After her studio was seized for her practicing without a license, she applied to the Académie de Saint-Luc, which unwittingly exhibited her works in their Salon. In 1774, she was made a member of the Académie.[7] On 11 January 1776 she married Jean-Baptiste-Pierre Le Brun, a painter and art dealer. Vigée Le Brun began exhibiting her work at their home in Paris, the Hôtel de Lubert, and the Salons she held here supplied her with many new and important contacts.[7] Her husband's great-great-uncle was Charles Le Brun, the first director of the French Academy under Louis XIV. Vigée Le Brun painted portraits of many of the nobility.

On 12 February 1780, Vigée-Le Brun gave birth to a daughter, Jeanne Julie Louise, whom she called Julie and nicknamed "Brunette."[6]

Madame Perregaux, 1789

In 1781 she and her husband toured Flanders and the Netherlands, where seeing the works of the Flemish masters inspired her to try new techniques. Her Self-Portrait with Straw Hat (1782) was a "free imitation" of Peter Paul RubensLa Chapeau de Paille (ca. 1622–25).[8][9] Dutch and Flemish influences have also been noted in The Comte d'Espagnac (1786) and Madame Perregaux (1789).[10]

In 1787, she caused a minor public scandal when her Self-Portrait with Her Daughter Julie (1787) was exhibited at the Salon of 1787 showing her smiling and open-mouthed, which was in direct contravention of traditional painting conventions going back to antiquity. The court gossip-sheet Mémoires secretscommented: "An affectation which artists, art-lovers and persons of taste have been united in condemning, and which finds no precedent among the Ancients, is that in smiling, [Madame Vigée LeBrun] shows her teeth."[11] In light of this and her other Self-Portrait with Her Daughter Julie (1789), Simone de Beauvoirdismissed Vigée Le Brun as narcissistic in The Second Sex (1949): "Madame Vigée-Lebrun never wearied of putting her smiling maternity on her canvases."[12]

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Who ART You? 08

I first met Adele when she signed up for one of my past Mastermind workshops about 8 years ago. We became fast friends and I’ve been inspired by her ever since. Meet Adele Sypesteyn.

Adele Sypesteyn

Who ART You?

How did you grow up? I grew up in New Orleans in a very creative household. My mother was an artist and as a family we knew nothing else but support, encouragement, and interest in the arts. I went to school in a very liberal and art focused environment so really, I never thought about any other career than being a painter, sculptor, and photographer.

I became an artist because…… My passion took me there. Earning a living as an artist came about organically as I did paintings for my home and friends would come by and want me to do something for their house. Over the 40 years I have been working as an artist, my commitment to it has grown and expanded. 

What brought you to art? An early exposure to art and the fun and joy I got from creating something new was so exciting I just couldn’t stop. 

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go. I do not have any trouble letting any piece of work go. Not even in the beginning. The intimate connection to each piece as I am working on it captures all my attention. Even after a full day of painting, when I go to sleep, I am so excited to wake up and run out to the studio and see it in a fresh light and continue on until it is resolved. Once that point comes and I feel comfortable with it’s completion, I am finished attaching myself to it. 

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why? There are many interesting artist lives but I would not want to be any of them. I feel beyond grateful for my life as an artist.

Who, what influences your art? The worn, aged walls of New Orleans have totally captured my attention for my entire career. There is such a beautiful juxtaposition of interesting colors, shapes, and lines that I have been endlessly inspired by them. There is always something new that hides behind the obvious. The little surprises that pop out are what gives so much richness and depth to the constant inspiration. 

What has art taught you? Art has taught me to let go of perfection and just be happy to continually make progress. It has also taught me that profound joy can be had in just looking and observing the world.

Favorite/best resources as an artist? I enjoy following other artists on Instagram and I could browse Pinterest for hours. 

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands? My large antique calligraphy brush is my magical instrument. The brushstroke is like no other.

What medium do you use? Why? Acrylic is my medium of choice because I enjoy working in multiples and I like things to dry quickly as I have so many layers in my work.

What is your favorite subject matter? Abstract is what has been my lifelong subject matter, but I am starting to paint white flowers and I love that. It is something fairly new.

What are you still hoping to learn? Learning is like an addiction to me. Despite my decades of painting I still take at least two classes each year. And each and every time I learn something new. 

When I think of art, I ………….Swoon. 

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? They are all related. Art and creativity have been my life. Learning about business was something new in the last seven years since I decided to pull out of all my gallery representation and sell on my own. The surprise to me was to see that the business side is super creative and I love it. 

A defining moment in my life was when………..There have been several defining moments in my long career. I think my first solo show transformed how I thought of myself as an artist. And, more recently, withdrawing from all gallery representation and showing and selling on my own. Although it was a major risk, it has shown me that anything is possible.

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was…….. Just show up and the inspiration will come. 

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it? Yes, typically I go into my studio and look through the many books I have made that are filled with ideas about color combinations, line quality, patterns, etc. Every single time something will jump out at me saying “do this, try this”. And I am off to the races.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by? Mostly I live by the concept of staying in the moment for that is where the joy is. Every day I try to just be kind, generous, and thoughtful of others. 

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future? I must say that I am extremely excited to begin offering online classes this year along with a membership site that will offer exciting new things each month. 


Website: https://adelesypesteynstudio.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/adelesypesteynstudio/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adelesypesteyn/
Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/adelesypesteyn

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Who ART you? 07

Love a girl who paints abstracts with great shapes and beautiful color! Please meet Christina Flowers!

Christina Flowers

Who ART You?

How did you grow up? I grew up with a love of the outdoors and outdoor sports.  I craved adventure into the unknown which included the world of art, photography and travel to foreign lands. We had a subscription to National Geographic and for a time I dreamed of being a National Geographic Photographer.

I became an artist because……There has always been a string attached to my heart, pulling me in that direction.  I pursued Architecture first and found that I love the making more than the planning.

What brought you to art? Architecture school was like five years of art exploration.  We had open studios with access to silk screening, photography, a wood shop, print making, pottery and welding.  I would collage, draw with oil pastels, paint in ink with paintbrushes I made. I would create models with chip board, resin, paper, anything I could find.   I would draw on an endless spool of paper and always carried a sketchbook.  The exploration and presentation of ideas was so important and I found that I really enjoyed what I could create with my own two hands.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go. Last fall I released my first full collection of original paintings.  It was a very meaningful process for me and I found it hard to see them all go.  But once they found their new homes, it opened the door and space in my heart and mind for new work.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why? Alexander Calder.  I love the way his sculptures and mobiles transform a space.  The form, balance and movement of shape is fascinating to me.  I’d love to be a part of the process of creating art that large - it is exhilarating to me.  I also would not mind living the life of Ray Eames for a bit.  She had a magical mind!

Who, what influences your art? There are many things that influence my art, but I think that at the heart of it is the outdoors and the adventures promised.  The mountains really do call to me, especially when they are covered in snow.  I love the thrill of being just outside of my comfort zone.  The way my heart races - I try to bring that feeling to my art practice.

What has art taught you? To slow down.  To live in the moment and focus on just one thing at at time - the brush in my hand, the paint on the canvas.

Favorite/best resources as an artist? Other artists! I’m finding how open and helpful other artist can be if I am open and helpful in return. It is truly wonderful to be a part of a community.  The Emily Jeffords Mastermind is currently a large part of my artistic community.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands? I love my screen printing squeegees  I have multiple sizes and really let go when I paint with them.  It is such a physical way to paint at a large scale, pushing and pulling paint across the canvas.

What medium do you use? Why? I paint with acrylic paint.  I love the richness of solid flat color I can achieve.

What is your favorite subject matter? Landscapes in the abstract seen through my own colored lens.

What are you still hoping to learn? To scale up.  I’d love to paint large murals and sculptures.

When I think of art, I …………. Feel my heart race.  I smile.  I look forward to what the future will bring.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? They feel like separate pieces in my mind, but they are all woven together in daily life.

A defining moment in my life was when……….. A defining moment in my life as an artist is when I left my full time job as a Creative Director in Aspen and moved to the East Coast. Instead of pursing another full-time job, I decided to take a chance, follow my dreams and start my own business.

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was…….. The more you play, experiment, and have fun while you create, the more joy it will give back to you. You never know what other people will respond to, but if you have passion for what you make and a love for what you do, the work will speak for itself.

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it? I don’t have a specific ritual.  I create when I’m feeling creative and music is always a part of the process.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by? “The earth has music for those who listen.”  -William Shakespeare

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future? I am currently working on a new collection of smaller paintings.  As this is the start of the year, my plans are still forming and dreams are still large.  I am always open to new adventures,  new experiences and new collaborations.

Name: Christina Flowers
Website: HelloChristinaFlowers.com
IG: @HelloChristinaFlowers

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Who ART You? 06

I’ve gotten to know Jennifer the last several months and love her fresh approach to art making.

Jennifer Daily

Who ART You?

How did you grow up? I grew up in a suburb of Sacramento. My mom was an incredibly patient 1st grade teacher, and my dad was an entrepreneur. He owned a wallpaper shop when I was a kid, and my first job was helping ladies choose wallpaper for their homes. After the wallpaper shop my dad started a business making and distributing educational videos. I did several jobs for that company, and loved seeing how he bootstrapped that company into a successful place.

I became an artist because……Art has always been a meditative practice to me. I became an artist because it is one of the few times that I feel like I am right with the world and am doing the thing I was put here to do.

What brought you to art? I had a cool art teacher in high school, Mrs. A. Her classroom was a place for everyone to relax and experiment. She really believed that everyone could be successful in art making, and taught me how to break down the world into lines/colors/shapes. Art wasn’t so intimidating after that, and became my favorite part of school.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go. I just sent a piece off to Brooklyn that was the first to give my heart a little pang of remorse. It was my favorite from a collection that marked a real change in my painting style, and as I wrapped it up for shipping I thought “hmmm... maybe I should’ve kept that one”. But I’ve moved on. I always tell myself I can just paint more.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why? This is an impossible questions! I’m not trading my life for anybody’s, but if I could pop into any artist’s life for just one day I pick Paul Gauguin on a gorgeous day in Tahiti.

Who, what influences your art? I’m definitely influenced by trends in fashion and interiors, and by living in a coastal urban area with gorgeous light. But in the last year I have come to rely more on my internal influence than on external influence. I feel an overwhelming need to simplify my surroundings and my life, and that has definitely transferred to my art as well.

What has art taught you? Art has taught me to trust myself and to be brave. It has also taught me to let go, have fun, and not to take anything too seriously.

Favorite/best resources as an artist? Nicholas Wilton and his Art2Life Academy. I took his course last year and it was life changing. I’m hoping to attend one of his workshops in the next year or two.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands? A spray bottle of water.

What medium do you use? Why? Acrylic paint (mostly). I love that it dries quickly and I can work faster. I also love that it can mimic watercolor but dries permanent. Most of my work is mixed media, so I also use a lot of pencil, charcoal, crayon, acrylic pen, etc.

What is your favorite subject matter? I paint non-representational work with the occasional abstract landscape thrown in.

What are you still hoping to learn? How to keep an abundance of supplies at hand without losing anything in the inevitable mess.

When I think of art, I ………….feel so lucky to be alive. Art is transformative. For the artist. For the viewer. I just want to be a part of it on all sides.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? In my world they pretty much blur into one thing. I have two school-aged kids, so am often working while they do their thing. I help run the art docent program at their school, and love coming up with art projects for them to try. Up until a certain age kids all love making art. It’s so good for them, and for me too.

A defining moment in my life was when………..I left my job as a web designer ages and ages ago. I spent so much time and energy on that education and career path, then realized that I didn’t want to sit in front of a computer for the rest of my life. It led to quite a few experimental career choices, but ultimately led me here to fine art. So for that I am grateful.   

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was……..“There is no such thing as a mistake. Every step along the way just adds richness to the final piece. Even if you cover it up.” That advice from Nicholas Wilton was incredibly liberating.

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it? I try to keep things pretty simple. I go into my studio, put on my apron, get some fresh (paint) water and chat with any studio mates I see along the way. Then I pick some music to suit my mood and get moving.

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by? I’m a sucker for a good motivational quote, and I collect them on a Pinterest board. But one of my favorites is from my son Finn when he was around 4. He told me “There are no losers when you’re drawing rainbows”, and I love the sweet sentiment behind it - especially now that he is a sarcastic preteen. It is also how I feel about art making and the supportive community of artists I have found. My mentor Emily Jeffords started the #doitfortheprocess movement, and I think she would approve of this message ;)

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future? Right now I will be concentrating on developing a body or work, but I do daydream about helping other people discover their own intuitive art making process. The future is wide open.

Name: Jennifer Daily
Website: http://www.jenniferdailyart.com
IG: @jenniferdailyart
FB: https://www.facebook.com/Jenniferdailyart/

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Who ART You? 05

Love hearing the back story of Laurie Anne and how she got started in art making and what influences her work! I think you will too! And look at that sweet little puppy! Oh my!

LaurieAnne Gonzalez

Who ART You?

How did you grow up? I grew up in Birmingham, Alabama in a very artistic family. My mom is an artist and my dad and brothers are all very artistic as well. Art is something that was always valued and encouraged in my family. I remember my dad sometimes coming home from work with original local art that he would find these at small, eclectic shops that he would pass by on his commutes to work.

I became an artist because…… I always took art classes growing up but it wasn’t until high school that I realized I could go to college and study something I actually really loved to do! To me, it was the most natural decision.

What brought you to art? I have always been surrounded by art and artists. My mom started her own stationery company when I was 2 (Sweet Pea Designs) and it’s still going on today. I even worked with her for 4 years after of college. One of my grandmothers was an interior decorator and the most talented creative woman. She has always had beautiful art in her homes.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go. I am actually really good about holding on to my favorite paintings if I cant part with them. There is one painting I think about often and wish I hadn’t sold. It was titled “Power” and was of birds sitting on a power line.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why?  This is such a hard question. I would say, Monet and Picasso. Monet, because I would love to just experience his process in creating his massive lily pad paintings. Picasso, because I am so inspired by the variation of his work. He wasn’t afraid to change and evolve and I love that about his work.

Who, what influences your art? My art is largely influenced by nature and my travel experiences. Moving to the desert was such a fun shift in my art career. It filled me with so much new inspiration from the American western landscape!

What has art taught you? Art has taught me to appreciate the beauty that is all around me. 

Favorite/best resources as an artist? My artist community! Having other artist friends is so unbelievably valuable.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands? Paint and paintbrushes.

What medium do you use? Why? Acrylic Paint. My studio is actually in my kitchen, so I prefer to work with safer materials. 

What is your favorite subject matter? At the moment, Landscapes. 

What are you still hoping to learn? I want to keep pushing myself and try things that do not come naturally to me. Right now that’s abstract art. 

When I think of art, I ………… I think of beauty and life.

 How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? For me they are everything. I eat, drink and sleep art and business these days! There isn’t a whole lot of separation at the moment but I think that is part of being an artist. Inspiration can hit at anytime and you have to be prepared to take advantage of those moments. At the same time, art is a very mental game and you have to be able to rest when you need it to keep things balanced.

A defining moment in my life was when……….. I had the opportunity to travel and live abroad in my early twenties. Travel has always been my greatest inspiration and something I prioritize. 

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was……..Just create, no matter what. Get all the ugly and bad work out and the good work will flow. 

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it? I have to have my slow mornings with my pup and chai latte. After that, I’m usually ready to go!

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future? I am working on larger paintings and am very excited about them!

Name: Laurie Anne Gonzalez
Website: www.laurieanneart.com
IG: @laurieanneart
FB: www.facebook.com/laurieanneart

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If you aren’t on my newsletter getting the lastest uptodate information, you may be missing out. Sign up here. Not only will I be offering some really rad online art workshops in the future that I know you will like,(say yes!), but I will be hosting a random drawing in the weeks to come! But only my subscribers to the newsletter, (not just the blog) will be eligble to win.

Follow me on IG ( @janmccarthy ) to get the lastest photo ops from my neighborhood (whichever one I happen to be in)

Who ART You? 04

I’m so excited to share the story about Katherine Corden!

Katherine Corden

Who ART You?

How did you grow up?
I grew up in a very creative household. My mom is an art teacher and has her BFA. My dad is also extremely creative. Together, the two of them have designed beautiful homes and often craft their own furniture and interior décor for the space. I was inspired on a daily basis in their home and was always encouraged to make things myself – of course their creative assistance was always available!

We spent most of our summers either retreating to our cottage in northern Michigan or traveling to new countries around the world. At an early age I was introduced to art galleries, unique cultures, and the glory that is the great outdoors. Looking back, it makes a lot of sense why I’m so enamored with fine art.

I became an artist because……
I’ve always felt that creating is part of my core being. I love the freedom that this lifestyle provides me and I feel fortunate that I’ve found such a supportive community that allows me to continue practicing art and am able to support my own family with this practice.

What brought you to art?
Like I mentioned, my mother is an art teacher. My parents got married and had my sister and I when they were fairly young and my Dad was still paying back tuition loans. We didn’t have a ton of money to buy video games or fancy toys (though my parents would have likely discouraged that regardless!) so we spent lots of time playing outside and we had LOTS of art supplies. My sister and I created something nearly everyday to keep us entertained while my mom was making dinner or working around the house. My parents entered me in my first art competition when I was 5! Like I said, it’s part of my core being.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go.
An art teacher once told me “nothing is precious”. You need to get comfortable letting artwork go – whether that’s selling it or scrapping it! I’ve really gotten comfortable selling my work; it’s necessary after all!

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be & why?
Oh gosh. I always get uncomfortable with this sort of question. I wouldn’t want to switch places with anyone because I truly love the life I have, but if I could be friends with any artist alive or dead and experience the time period they are from, it would definitely be Monet. To live in France and be apart of such a revolutionary movement?! Plus, I can only imagine studying with him – his use of color and movement in brush strokes is something that inspires my own work.

Who, what influences your art?
I feel this is constantly changing, but a common thread in many of my pieces is the spirit of northern Michigan. Whether that is the lakes, the colors of the seasons, or the people who enjoy the land up there, you’ll frequently see feelings of that region in my work.

What has art taught you?
Patience. In my own studio practice especially, the under painting is never very pleasing to the eye. The final stages are when it really comes together. I still struggle with patience. I paint with acrylics specifically because of my short attention span! One day I’ll have to challenge myself with oils, that will really test my patience.

Favorite/best resources as an artist?
Honestly, Shanna Skidmore’s blueprint model changed everything for me. It’s basically business school for creatives. I don’t even want to think about all the years of trial and error and money I’ve saved by investing in her mentorship!

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands?
My neo crayons I sometimes use to add dimension to my paintings! I grew up drawing, and painting came later, so I love adding in finer details with playful instruments like crayons.

What medium do you use? Why?
Acrylic paint – short attention span!

What is your favorite subject matter?
I’ve always loved the human figure – it challenges me and I love the dimension of values it provides. However, landscapes and flowers are much easier and relaxing for me to paint!

What are you still hoping to learn?
I would love to learn how to bring oil paints into my practice one day – though I would want to find non-toxic materials if possible!

When I think of art, I ………….
Feel inspired, energized and content!

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect?
How do they not intersect!? I often find inspiration in my daily life. I still work from home, so I need to consciously set boundaries between my business and home life, but in reality they all tend to blend together. Sometimes this can be a beautiful thing, and sometimes it can be sensory overload!

A defining moment in my life was when………..
I married my husband this past August. He has brought so much joy into my life and challenges me to be a better person on a daily basis. He is above and beyond supportive of my work and me – I can’t imagine having the courage to pursue this career without him by my side.

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was……..
I feel like I’m repeating myself here a lot… but my favorite advice is “nothing is precious!” 

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities before you make art? If so, what is it?
I really savor my slow mornings. They are one of my favorite things about being my own boss – having the time in the morning to slowly wake up, drink my coffee, talk to my husband, and read a couple pages from my current book. I then tidy up a bit and clean the dishes. For whatever reason, having a physically clean space allows more room for me to make a mess in my studio!

Is there a quote that inspires you or that you try to live your life by?
We can be mothers who speak passionately about art, and we can be artists who speak passionately about motherhood. We can be both, and we can be gray.” – Erin Loechner

I’m not a mother (yet) but I love what these words symbolize and how you can apply them to different areas of your life. Though I’ve practiced art all my life, I went a very traditional route in school and studied physical therapy. In the beginning of my art career I was also working full time as a PT. I still work occasionally as a PT too. These words just feel like a warm blanket wrapping me up – we can be both, and we can be gray. And that’s okay.

Is there anything new you are planning to introduce in the future?
This March I will be launching an exclusive collection of 15 paintings through my dear friend Megan’s curated online shop: shop.freshexchange.com . The works will feature candid conversations around the dinner table – a combination of figures and still lifes. I’ll be in good company with many other northern Michigan artists who all celebrate the land up there and do so in the most ethical and environmentally conscious way possible.

Name: Katherine Corden Bellisario
Website: http://www.katherinecorden.com
IG: @katherinecorden.art
FB: http://www.facebook.com/katherinecordenart

Brought to you by www.janmccarthy.com
@janmccarthy
jan@janmccarthy.com
https://www.facebook.com/janmccarthystudio/

If you aren’t on my newsletter getting the lastest uptodate information, you may be missing out. Sign up here. Not only will I be offering some really rad online art workshops in the future that I know you will like,(say yes!), but I will be hosting a random drawing in the weeks to come! But only my subscribers to the newsletter, (not just the blog) will be eligble to win.

Follow me on IG ( @janmccarthy ) to get the lastest photo ops from my neighborhood (whichever one I happen to be in)

Who ART You? 03

I had the privlege of meeting Lorna in Australia when I took her workshop ! I love her spirit and expression. I think you will too.

Who ART You?

LORNA CRANE

How did you grow up? Sometimes I think I have never grown up…… But my roots were grounded in the working class steel city of Wollongong  an hour south of Sydney, NSW Australia.

I became an artist because……It was just part of my life from an early age. From finding shapes in clouds and letting my imagination take me on a journey through my dreams to, I guess that deep knowing that art would be ever present in my life journey.

What brought you to art? At the age of five I won a colouring in competition and from that time on I just knew that I would become an artist. A hunger that still flows through me each and every day.

Growing up in the ’60’s my desire to go to art school was squashed when my family said that I had to get a ‘real job’ and my father pushed me into a traineeship at the Port Kembla BHP Steelworks studying Land and Engineering Survey Drafting. So I became a mapmaker in the ’70’s. It was during this time I married and had three children and then studied part time at the local Technical College. 

That time gave me a strong basis of technical skills, then later, the University of Wollongong commenced with offering a Diploma in Creative Art then later the Bachelor of Art courses. After five years of study with a painting major along with printing and textiles as minor studies I graduated with both an Associate Diploma and a Bachelor of Creative Arts with Distinction.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go.
Earthy Delights’ Mixed media on canvas 30cm x 30cm 2013

lorna+3.jpg

This piece was one of a series of landscape inspired works that were on display as part of the 30 year Art School reunion show in Sydney. Strongly influenced by an artist residency with the Bundanon Trust 2012 during late spring and now in a private collection.

When I see this work the memories flood back of the fecund flowering blooms of that time along the Shoalhaven River.   

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be and why? Elisabeth Cummings is a living female Australian in her mid ’80’s that has spent her life drawing and painting the Australian landscape. Her colourful, vibrant and textural works continue to inspire me. Her timeless works on canvas and paper resonate on many levels. Her attitude, aesthetic and continued passion to paint the landscape that surrounds her keep wanting to keep on working as an artist for as long as I live.

Who, what influences your art? ‘From the mid ’80’s I was strongly influenced by the Neo Expressionists from Germany viewed at the Adelaide Festival of Art 1986 - in particular Gerhardt Richter, Peter Bommels, Joseph Beuys and Anslem Keifer. I enjoy the bold expressionist approach of these artists. With a one month residency in Berlin 2009there was a huge impact on my work and mindset - and attitudinal shift resulting in a solo show at Belconnen Art Centre 2010 - with a series of paintings, works on paper and a video projection. My other favourite is Tapies!!!!

My Australian influences include Ian Fairweather, Tony Tuckson, Elisabeth Cummings, Rover Thomas and Terri Brooks.  These artists still continue to be an force in regard to gestural abstraction and the Australian landscape. I strive to be still painting like Cummings in my later years.

Right now the artists that speak to me are Sally Gabori for her landscapes of bold brushstrokes and sense of place and colour.  Also Sydney based artist Catherine Cassidy with her primal and inventive approach to her landscape inspired works. I get so enthused by the way she questions the elements of light, air and space within her work where she uses such a fresh approach in bold brush strokes and mark making with an undeniable connection to the land.   

 What has art taught you? To trust, to be brave, to be bold, to be vulnerable, to tell a story, to look further, to continue to learn and to be resilient as a female artist 

Favorite/best resources as an artist?
Google search
Artist Books
Instagram
YouTube
Podcasts

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands ?
My Handmade brushes of course!!

Brushes+LornaCrane.jpg

What medium do you use? Why? Acrylic and ink mainly as I work very fast and get impatient with drying times

What is your favorite subject matter? The memory of the landscape that I have inhabited. From working on site and letting it distill into more gestural drawings, works on canvas as well fibre pieces.

What are you still hoping to learn? Learning to be a bit more minimal in my work - taking on the less is more in the balance between the positive and negative in a work. Letting the spaces in between speak volumes. A work in progress ……..

When I think of art, I ………….I feel challenged, excited, nourished and alive!!

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? You strive to make it work the best possible way for you. Finding the right balance is a challenge but making the time and having a disciplined approach is an essential part of the journal.

A defining moment in my life is when……….. There are many moments in my career so far. One in particular was a time that carried me further and deeper into my work. It was a one month residency in Alice Springs during 2002, where I began relating much more to the Australian landscape as an artist through the observations being present but also the distillation of shapes, forms and colour into my work.

It was a special experience sitting in a dry creek bed with indigenous artist Billy Benn. Listening to him talk about his land and hearing his stories about his place, made even more special by observing the story in his sand drawings at Honeymoon Gap. One of those pinch me moments that touched me on many levels. It made me question myself as an Australian artist and gave me the desire to spend more time relating to the surrounding landscape.  A residency like this was a unique experience where you place yourself in a totally different environment. It was such a valuable experience where you questioned and confronted yourself as an artist.

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was…….. JUST DO IT and continue to make your own authentic marks

Do you have a ritual or do creative activities that help your art practice? If so, what is it? It tends to change with the seasons but I work on my practice most days. It can be spent in the studio during the mornings, preparing for workshops, research and listening to podcasts. 

Lorna Crane

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Who ART You? 02


Anita Mosher is my featured artist today! Love her art and her story!

Who ART You?

Anita Mosher

How did you grow up? I grew up in a home where my mother was an accomplished artist and maintained a working studio her entire life. My earliest memories of her studio where her beautiful portrait and figure life drawings in pastel. Mary Cassatt and Edgar Degas were her favorite painters. Mother was the “picture lady” at my grade school. Once a month she brought in art prints and discussed art history, different styles, techniques and interpretation. Mother also would rent paintings through our local library and hang them on the wall for month at a time. Wouldn’t that be great if libraries still did that?

My maternal grandmother was also an artist. I have two oil paintings that my grandmother painted a century ago that I treasure. My father worked for TWA and we traveled extensively. Wherever we were flew, my parents took me to art museums in every city/country we visited. I was exposed to many different art styles and mediums during my childhood. Art was deeply incorporated as a part of my everyday life.

I became an artist because...... Creating art is all I ever wanted to do. I have a photo of myself at 3 years old in front of my first chalkboard drawings with a huge smile on my face. My mother put me in my first art classes at the Nelson Art Museum in Kansas City at 6 years old. When I look at the projects I did in those classes, I remember how excited and fulfilled I was creating art. I still feel that way every time I have a paintbrush in my hand.

What brought you to art? I believe that there is a reason we don’t see the world in black and white. Color is vital to our daily lives. I find I express myself best in color and shapes that I can not find words for any other way.

Describe your favorite art piece that you had trouble letting go. It was an oil painting early in my professional career of three small rowboats waiting patiently to transport staff to the big yachts further out in the harbor. The sun was setting, the reflected light off of the water and colors of the worn and well used humble little rowboats caught my eye. When I first sketched this painting in, it hit me that this could be a “museum piece” for me. A term I heard from one of my instructors, meaning a keeper...many artists dream about museum shows during their lifetime. I was really happy with my composition and brushwork in that piece and at that time in my career, not sure that I could ever accomplish that again. I reluctantly sent it to a gallery in Santa Fe, NM that I was showing in at the time and when I heard that it sold I felt great regret. I still do. I don’t know who actually owns the piece or where it ended up.

If you could come back and live as any artist, (alive or dead) who would it be and why? Georgia O’Keefe. O’Keefe lead such an interesting life with her independent spirit, travel, relationships and her dramatic and unique works of art. She was the really the first woman artist to receive complete acceptance from the fine art world. O’Keefe refused to be hemmed in to a certain style or subject matter. She explored realism, abstraction, modernism and surrealism and her entire body of work is appreciated by collectors and museums. I also enjoy exploring different styles and subject matters and relate to her artistic restlessness and wanderlust.

Who, what influences your art? I am inspired by color. I find inspiration everywhere, the color combinations and light on a subject whether I am on a hike and see it on the mountain landscape, a figure walking down the street or an apple on my kitchen counter. Painting is my interpretation of the moment and how I describe it to the viewer.

What has art taught you? Art has taught me to trust and believe in myself and my own intuition and most of all, incredible gratitude for this beautiful, messy world we are privileged to experience. The beauty and complexity of nature and my chance to witness it, remind me to lace up my boots and wander as long as I am able.

Favorite/best resources as an artist? I collect other artists work whom I admire and want to learn from. In addition, I have a large library of art books that I refer to. Instagram and Facebook make it easy to check out what is happening in the art world.

What becomes a magical instrument in your hands? A palette knife is my magical go to tool whether a painting is going well or not. When I get too tight or need textural contrast or interest, my assortment of palette knives changes the visual conversation with just a few strokes.

What medium do you use? Why? I am a dedicated oil painter. Oils suit my personality. Oil paints are the most forgiving, easiest, and sensuous paint. I enjoy painting alla prima, when the entire painting is wet and I can work and blend anywhere.

When I think of art, I ............. I believe that the purpose of art is to enhance the joy of living. My hope is that my collectors find joy every time they look at my work.

How do life, business, creativity and art intersect? Original art hangs in every room of my house, bathrooms and laundry room included. Original art is my source of strength, positively influences my mood and always inspires me. My hikes, travels and personal experiences all center around potential inspiration for future works. The business piece of creating flows from wanting to communicate, interact and share the way I see the world with others. I feel blessed to love what I do and include it in my daily life.

A defining moment in my life is when........... A friend was the first one ask me if she could buy two of my paintings. I am forever grateful and thankful for that first sale!

Best advice I ever got about art or being an artist was........ Even some of the best artists I respect and have had conversations with have times of self doubt and frustration and will scrape off a painting. Their advice is to keep painting. That leads to increased knowledge and skill. Painting is all about solving problems and learning from mistakes. It’s a good metaphor for life.

Do you have a ritual or practice any creative activities that you do before you make art? If so, what is it? Quieting my mind whether thru a hike, meditation or looking at other artists work. There seems to be a lot going on up there some days and I need to slow it down to focus on being present.

Name: Anita Mosher
Website: www.anitamosher.com
IG: anitamosherfineart
FB: anita mosher

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xo, jan
www.janmccarthy.com
@janmccarthy
jan@janmccarthy.com