Happy Wednesday! This is the perfect week for me to spend some time answering your questions as we’ve had a lazy few days… Hubby has been battling a pretty severe cold all week, I feel like I’ve been sitting on the brink of one all week, my 4 year old has had way more than his daily allowance of television and iPad games and despite the beautiful weather, we’ve been mostly holed up inside, lazing around the house. But, at least now I’m choosing to do something somewhat productive! 🙂
And, I’m forewarning you… this has the potential to be a bit of a lengthy post…
Q: How long have you been working in mixed media?
A: Actually only about a year and a half. Although, I’ve always enjoyed creating things… as a kid I loved writing, I always enjoyed being creative with my clothes (oftentimes to my mother’s embarrassment), as I got older I was always rearranging and “re-decorating” my bedroom, I took dance classes from about age 5 or 6 all the way through college and loved choreographing my own dances from a young age, I also enjoyed making collages of favorite things cut out of magazines which eventually led me to scrap booking in my college years, a love that only increased as I got married and had kids. Over time my scrap booking evolved from the “traditional” to a messier “mixed media” style when I discovered and started incorporating paint & mists into my layouts.
Then, in late 2010 I discovered Project Life and started documenting in this new style which freed me up to learn new ways of creating. I watched a mixed media tutorial by Christy Tomlinson and found a new love/passion in mixed media art. It was a natural progression as many of the materials I was using in my scrap booking are used in mixed media art. After making several art pieces as gifts for family members they encouraged me to sell my art and once I realized how much I loved creating these pieces, knowing I did not have the room in my own home to keep them I was determined to work diligently and start my own business selling my creations and finally opened my Etsy shop last November. It’s truly been a learn by trial and error, labor of love and one I look forward to continue growing and creating more as the Lord wills.
Q: Where do my ideas come from?
A: For as long as I can remember I’ve loved words… especially quotes, scripture verses and inspiring phrases. Most of the time my inspiration comes from those words. Other times it might be some other art that inspires me to create an object and I find the words to go with it. Unlike most artists I tend not to sketch my ideas out first. It kinda takes the fun out of it for me… I like to just jump in and see what happens… so sometimes my ideas come as I’m creating. I’ve also been known to have a bunch of scraps or bits and pieces of stuff on my desk and “clean up” by using them to create a piece which is how this one came to be.
Q: How long does it take to make a piece?
A: It depends, I’m usually working on more than one piece at a time… letting the paint dry on one as I start on another… I also tend to work in chunks of time, not usually creating a piece start to finish in one sitting but over a period of sittings. I would estimate though that the average piece takes 2-3 hours total.
A: Paper and paint are definitely my favorites. I use mostly scrap booking patterned paper, but have branched out to using dictionary paper, tissue paper and sheet music. As I’ve discovered the joy of thrifting and vintage shopping I’ve enjoyed hunting for old books and paper ephemera to use as well. As for paint, my favorite is the inexpensive craft acrylic paint, I like that it doesn’t dry as quickly as others that I’ve tried and the fact that it’s inexpensive allows me to have more color selection. Mod Podge has been my favorite sealer/gel medium although I’d like to try some others sometime to have something to compare it to and see if there’s another brand/type I’d like better. Another fun product I’ve had fun playing with is modeling paste. It creates some fun texture and raised elements to the art and it can be made any color I want by adding paint to it, although most of the time I like just using it white as it comes. In the future I’d like to incorporate fabric and other 3-D elements, I’ve also heard of some artists using cheesecloth in their backgrounds and I’m curious about that as well.
Thank you for sharing your questions… It’s been fun answering them and I hope you’ve learned a little bit more about me and my art and creating process. Feel free to ask other questions any time!
I hope to continue learning, growing and expanding in my knowledge of art so, if you know of any great resources I would love to hear about them, or share with me some of your favorite techniques or mediums and maybe we can teach each other! 🙂