Sunday, August 14, 2011

The 5,4,3,2,1 of My Creative Process things about...

I saw this profile series first on Mollie Johanson's blog Wild Olive.  Its a simple set of 5 questions about yourself and your craft, started by the super creative people at Craftzine.  I thought I would add my own 5,4,3,2,1 to the fun and so here goes...

One Product You Are Particularly Proud Of
The Magic Dinosaur painting that I did with my 3 year old son.  I could never sell the original, I love it so.  To me it completely embodies his playful spirit, the innocence of childhood, and the simple beauty that can be created when you let go of your expectations and free yourself. 

Two Mistakes You Made In the Past
1.  Putting too much pressure on myself to be an instant success as an artist selling on Etsy.  I  started to feel like it was a reflection of my talent as an artist when months would go by with no sales.  I wanted to give up and forget that I even tried.  I was painting and creating constantly worried whether it would sell, and it was just totally wrong for me and my creative process.  Lesson learned: create only from your heart and never your head.

2.  Not understanding what a non-juried "art/craft" show could be like before I bought a table space for an event.  Oh man!  Nothing prepares you for trying to sell your handmade wares that you slaved and sweated over and poured your heart into positioned in between wholesale sellers (you know those people selling off-brand purses and hawking low-priced cologne).  It was a very disheartening weekend of sitting alone in my booth full of my creativity, while customers shopped for deals on either side of me.  Lesson learned: Do Your Research!  Just because it says it's an arts and crafts show, does not mean that only artist and crafters will be there.

Three Things That Make Your Work Unique
1.  Pairing bright bold colors with Natural ones.  I just adore the juxtaposition of a totally unnatural color, like neon pink or bright teal with a dark natural green or a mustard yellow.

2.  Mixing the textures of sewing, fabric, paper, and paint to create my paintings.  I love the soft and hard mediums working together to make something really beautiful and interesting.

3.  Not being afraid to try something new in my mixed media: I love grabbing bits of whatever I can find around me when I paint to add into the composition.  You never know what you might find hiding in the paint layers.

Four Tools You Love to Use
1. Brightly colored oil sticks - these suckers will draw in wet paint!

2. Hand Carved Stamps to build a background

3. Vintage Papers and Photos - I stock up on old books at library book sales, shop flea markets, and raid my relatives' attics at any opportunity to find vintage materials

4. Distress Ink Pads - love this product! I want to own every color they sell.  Right now I have the linen, aged photo, and lipstick colors and I use them on everything to create depth and make something new look vintage.

Five Inspirations
1.  My Son!  I love to watch him draw and paint.  His freedom and playfulness with what he creates inspires to me no end to be more like that in my own process.

2.  Art Books.  I am obsessed with collecting art books of all kinds.  Modern, classic, abstract, photography, painting, paper arts, sculpture, you name it I have some of it on my shelf.  When I am needing a creative idea, I look through one of my books and get inspired by the master works of others before me. 

3.  My Artistic Peers - There was a reason why famous painters from the same era's all came from the same school's of art.  Nothing is more inspiring and motivating then surrounding yourself with your contemporaries and influencing each others work.  Nowadays there is the internet to connect with people from all over the world and build a support network of emerging artists and crafters and letting their talents push my boundaries and bring new ideas.

4.  Music - I love to play music when I create and different kinds of music creates different feelings and ideas as I paint.  I love how my process changes when I am listening some old-school Tori Amos vs when I'm grooving to Jazz.  No matter what I am listening to, I always have more ideas with tunes going in the background.

5.  Nature - God's incredible creation all around us gives me boundless inspiration and ideas.  From mimicking a shape, texture, or color palette, the natural world never ceases to be the creative master at producing unexpected and original ideas.

There you have it, my 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Things About Me! Try it yourself.  Now it's your turn! Do you own 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 post to your blog or social networks site, and leave a link to it here in the comments.  I can't wait to learn about your creative process!


  1. wow! I love your insights and your creative style! thank you for sharing!!


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