|When and how did you begin to see yourself as an artist?
My earliest memory of Art is non-verbal and had something to do with Drawing, I saw it on TV back in the early 1960s, possibly on Captain Kangaroo. That experience activated an artistic area in my brain.
I had been taking courses, sketching and painting before I considered myself an artist. Other people who saw my work considered me an artist. During a serious illness, I knew that I wanted to focus on my art.
When I was a child. Drawing was my best friend. Then I knew I was "different" when I connected to my own little world, and preferred it to people...it hasn't much changed, except I've widened my world, and it's become even more enjoyable.
I think I "felt" myself as being an artist as a very young child. The spirit was there when I was barely able to climb onto my mother's lap and beg her to draw for me. The spirit was there when as a young child I saw and experienced nature and beauty. The spirit was there when I sometimes plunged into despair. The spirit was there when as a young woman I wondered what it would be like to be an artist. The spirit was there when I began the formal study of art at the age of 44. It was sometimes afterwards that I began to feel and then to act as an artist, and to know that I was and am an artist.
I don't see myself as an artist, although I have always wanted to be one
I started to take my art seriously after literally deciding one day to challenge myself to make a living out of my skills. After selling art regularly and successfully for 2 years, I began to see myself as a practicing/professional artist.
Coming from a family of musicians I have always associated myself with the musical aspect of art. Only in the past few years as I moved towards photography and painting did I see myself as an artist in the visual art form.
I minored in art in college and painted and made wood cut prints sporadically until my early 40's when living in Oaxaca MX inspired me to paint daily. The light, the beautiful land, the modern culture and the ancient culture gave me something I wanted to talk about in colorful images. I wasn't considering making painting and art a profession.
I painted 6-8 hours a day, and one day a Oaxacan painter/friend came over to visit. Looking at my work, he said "Wow, you've become my colleague" A few days later I sold my first painting to a couple from Taos, NM. It was after I sold that painting that I considered myself a professsional artist.
Later that year, upon returning to the US, friends and I produced my first show called "Following the Feathered Serpent". I found people wanted to buy my work.
I have shown in various galleries in the USA and in Mexico since that first show. I have been a featured artist in several Day of the Dead exhibitions also. Traveling at least half of the year in the 1990's and early 2000's, I was able to show my work in galleries in Bisbee, AZ; Palm Springs, CA; Sonoma, CA, Santa Fe, NM; Eugene, OR; Ashland, OR; San Cristobal De Las Casas, Chiapas and Oaxaca Mexico.
I was 5 years old when I won the art contest our school was running and my mom took me to see my painting of Bozo the clown hung in the window of the local supermarket. I was shocked to see it on display because I had no idea it was a painting contest!
Probably in grade six. People had been telling me for a while that I was a "good artist."
Ever since I can remember.
At about age 6 when I visited Sandy Calder in his studio in France. I saw a grown up living a magical life and living a dream.
Doing art has always been a part of my every day life. It is what would drive me, even as a tiny kid. In elementary school especially... I never thought of it as a "special talent" or anything, I just really needed to draw.
For as long as I can remember - the first time I picked up a pencil, traced outlines on my mothers mantlepiece (and got into big trouble as it was red pencil), won my first colouring-in competition and deciding to go to art school.
Art and being an artist has always been who I am and how I continue in the future.
When I was three years old I did my first painting. My Grandmother told me I was meant to be an artist and I believed her.
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