What does mixed media mean to you?
Mixed media to me, is one of the most forgiving, fun and creative ways to express oneself. It allows me to think outside the box and challenges me to find interesting and unique ways to improve my skills as an artist.
I’ve used mixed media for well over 20 years.
How has art impacted or enhanced your life?
A few years ago I went 9 months without creating a single piece of work. When I did come back to it I realized then that art wasn’t just a hobby for me – it defined me as a person. Without it I feel lost for words when asked to describe myself. Being an artist, to me, is a very intimate, personal, almost spiritual, creative force that I feel honored to have the ability to explore.
What are a few of the mixed media supplies you find yourself turning to the most?
When I begin a new piece I always have the following items within reach: a waterproof ink pen, tubes of watercolor paint, pastel pencils and my box of ephemera which houses everything from tiny beads to fabric scraps.
Who are some of your favorite mixed media artists?
I absolutely adore the work of Jamie Homeister. She paints wildlife on feathers and is also an excellent pastel artist. Aside from being highly skilled at her craft she has the ability to capture the essence of the animal she is painting. Incredibly talented.
I’m also a huge fan of Elly MacKay. She creates the most magical, serene, picturesque scenes imaginable through the use of what she calls Paper Theater. I could view her images for hours on end and am in awe of her work.
Tell us about your creative process.
I tend to work best when I’m doing a series. For example, right now I’m working on a series of paintings featuring Mother Earth. Once I have my subject in place the ideas come very quickly. I always have an image of the final piece in my mind before I begin laying pencil to paper, however once I start the actual painting it usually takes on a mind of its own. I find myself working through the process as though I am putting together a puzzle, piece by piece. Sometimes everything comes together quickly and perfectly; other times I need to take a step back and walk away for a bit as if awaiting for the whisper of my muse to tell me how to proceed. When a work is pronounced ‘complete’, sometimes even I am surprised at the outcome.
What makes your mixed-media art unique?
There is a lot of symbolism within the work I create. Many of my pieces are heavily influenced by my Native American Ancestry. The things I value and appreciate most about the culture is that everything is sacred and holds a purpose in this life. Landscape, animals and environmental elements are held in the highest regard and these subjects appear in some form or another in nearly every piece I create.
Where can we find you?
My personal blog: http://ellenbrennemanstudio.blogspot.com/
Images of works in progress can be found on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/EllenBrennemanStudio
Images of past and present work, and news regarding upcoming shows can be found on my personal website at: http://ellenbrennemanstudio.com/
Prints and other works for purchase can be found via my Etsy shop at: https://www.etsy.com/shop/EllenBrennemanStudio