Bethany Toews [bethanytoews]
What do you do? How do you define yourself as an artist?
I sing. I dance. I write. I play. I am constantly finding ways to embrace and release, speak and listen. I am most interested in art as communion. making contact, connecting. Oh, and remembering constantly that the whole point is to enjoy it, to have fun.
What is your message?
I love me and I love you. Love is super duper awesome.
Your biography in four lines.
I am where I have called home: Colorado, Kansas, Idaho, Oregon, Las Vegas, China, Prague, Brooklyn, Los Angeles. I am, like my passions, varied and ever changing, fluid and erratic, insatiable and curious. I am the people I have loved and lost and left behind. I am terrible at golf, but was once told that my voice is like smoke and feathers in a dream -- I laughed of course.
Do you upload your work to the web? If so, where could we see it?
How is an idea born? For you, what is inspiration?
Staring at landscapes at the end of the day, silhouettes. Looking for colors that zap my brain. Seeking out funny conversations and situations -- laughter is always a good point to start from.
What role does technology play in your creative process?
Besides frustrating the crap out of me, it also makes my creative process possible. I blog and record my music on a computer. Without it, it would just be me, my journal, a guitar, and a dream (which doesn't sound so bad, come to think of it).
What is art?
Communication with each other and something bigger than us.
When do you get your best ideas?
When I'm with dear friends and/or drinking whiskey.
How do you evaluate whether an idea is good or not?
When and how did you begin to see yourself as an artist?
After my first love, a painter, broke my heart. I realized (after an embarrassing amount of time) that I loved who he was and what he did because I was afraid to embrace it in myself. I've been trying to embrace it ever since (somedays are better than others).
Why do so many artists and creators have such volatile personalities?
They're not finding, confronting or living their truth. That would make anyone volatile.
How should a work of art be evaluated?
By each individual gut reaction, held sacred to each individual.
Must an artist reinvent him/herself everyday?
No, an artist should reinvent him/herself every 24.896 seconds or so.
What do you think about public funding for the arts?
Is art necessary?
Is this question necessary?
Does it pain you to let go of a piece you have sold?
Not as much as it pains me to not pay my rent.
In art, there is no guide. How do you know what the next step is?
You don't, but that's no reason to stop walking.
What types of jobs do you usually do?
I avoid jobs.
Which of your jobs or tasks do you most enjoy?
Doing whatever I want, whenever I want, however I want, all the time.
Do you personally collect any items?
Musical instruments, old buttons, other people's sadness (involuntarily), lists of dreams (some crossed out due to change of mind/heart, others achieved).
What advice would you give to those just beginning?
Don't worry about the outcome. Create because you can. Oh, and ignore all the doubting statements. Why not just choose to believe?
Los Angeles, California, United States of America