What does mixed media mean to you?
It means to play around with a range of different media and techniques. To create something beautiful out of often a blank surface, and at the same time maybe telling a story or exploring a theme. Mixed media is fun and messy, with no set rules, just as life in many ways. It can also be about thinking outside the box and using products and items in ways they were not originally intended for. I enjoy switching between different surfaces and sizes: cards, tags, Artist Trading Cards, art journaling, scrapbooking, canvases, altered items, mini-books, and 3-D items. They are all different canvases to my imagination.
How long have you been a mixed media artist?
I’ve been crafting ever since I was a child. About 2002, I started making cards and about two years later I started to scrapbook. Since then there has been no stopping me, I had found my home among paper, stamps, ink, paint, dies, photographs and embellishments. From the start, I enjoyed playing around with different techniques and mediums and at some stage it turned into mixed media art.
How has art impacted or enhanced your life?
Art has impacted my life in so many ways, I really cannot even imagine being without it. It brings me immense joy, it challenges me, it can make me happy if I feel sad, it transports me to other times and places without having to leave my studio, and it helps me to focus on the important things in life. Art has also brought me new friends from all over the world.
What are a few of the mixed media supplies you find yourself turning to the most?
I love to try out different supplies, but I do have some that I reach for the most. I rarely do a project without some stamping. Stamps are so versatile and you can do numerous techniques with them. On top of that, a rubber stamp lasts for a really long time, I have a few precious stamps from my grandfather that still stamp perfectly. Since I love stamps, I also love ink, and my hands are inky almost daily. Another favourite is watercolour paint and I also love watercolour paper, because it can handle so much, and I like to use water. Tim Holtz range of Distress products is another favourite of mine. I also use dies a lot and often in ways they were not originally intended for. Another supply I frequently reach for is stencils, since as stamps, they are very versatile. I also love acrylic paint and different acrylic pastes and gels. I mustn’t forget about the paper: old book paper, tissue paper, patterned paper, ephemera, bits and pieces; all make their way onto my projects.
Who are some of your favorite mixed media artists?
I always have a hard time picking favourites, regardless of the topic – books, movies, stamps, mixed media artists. There are so many inspiring artists, with a variety of styles, so it is hard to pick just a few. But here are some of my favourites:
- Tim Holtz
- Dina Wakley
- Wendy Vecchi
- Paula Cheney
- Donna Downey
- Ronda Palazzari
- Darlene Olivia McElroy
- Sandra Duran Wilson
- Natalie Kalbach
Tell us about your creative process.
I find the creative process to be very interesting, with all the surprises and happy discoveries I make along the way. A project can start from almost any type of inspiration: a random idea, something in nature, a photo, a memory, a quote or something I read, a colour, a new product, a surface that is calling out to be altered and so much more. From there, no one can be sure of what will happen. I love how projects take on their own life and turn into something else than I initially planned. It’s a kind of magic.
What makes your mixed-media art unique?
That’s a difficult question! I am pretty versatile and like to try new things and to work on different surfaces. I enjoy creating my own layered backgrounds, and I love texture and the way it makes you want to reach out and touch a project. Practically all of my projects include a range of meaningful little details. I like details, maybe a little word that peeks through somewhere or an image that has a special meaning. Two of my favourite things, apart from creating art, is to be outdoors in nature and to read, and both of these interests make their way onto things that I create. I like using words, text elements, quotes, and letters. I am also often inspired by nature: birds, trees, branches, flowers, colours, textures and more.
I like to use photos, sometimes my own, sometimes older family photos. Both my grandfathers were amateur photographers and it is a special connection to the past to use their photos. Another characteristic is that I often include stamping. You might not even notice it, but chances are there will be stamping somewhere on a project.
Where can we find you?