Women Who Make Art
Women Who Make Art
For the month of March, we've been highlighting a special edition series, called Women Who Make Art’, where we feature four incredible artists that have recently joined our community.
We've learned about the journey they took to become the artist they are today, any obstacles they’ve had to overcome, the advice they give to artists starting out and the inspiration behind their work.
First, we have Joyce, a Vancouver-based, Malaysian-born, happy-go-lucky painter & illustrator behind the label Arty Guava.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
When I was growing up, I was told that being an artist was not a viable career choice. There were a lot of misconceptions like smart people do not become artists and that artists are lazy dreamers who just sit around and draw all day. For the longest time, I was ashamed and afraid to tell anyone that I wanted a career in art. I let other peoples' fear become my own fears and judgement.
My advice to my younger self would listen with an open mind but ultimately trust in my own judgement and ability.
When did you realise that you had an artistic talent? And how did it feel when you sold your first art print?
I'm not sure about talent but I definitely showed artistic interest at a very young age. My mom told me that she kept me occupied for hours by just giving me a drawing block and some colouring books. Later on, she entered me into kids' art competitions at shopping malls just for fun and I would win some of them. I wouldn't really say I have talent but it is definitely years of accumulated hours of doing what I love that got me to where I am today.
When I sold my first art print, I was probably in disbelief mixed with joy and excitement. It was my first glimmer of hope that my art has commercial value.
Would you be able to give us a few lines on the inspiration behind your exclusive collection, The A-Z series?
The series is definitely inspired by my personal experience being a mom teaching my
5-year-old son his alphabets. I've always been fascinated by how the body can be contorted into various shapes and sizes and just thought it would be really cool to make the alphabet out of different body poses. Positive meaningful words associated which each alphabet was added just as a mindfulness prompt for myself and my audience to think about.
Next, we have Melissa Peltenburg, a photographer from Holland, who captures breathtaking shots of the world. A storyteller in her own right, she shows her bright and positive view on the world with her feel-good travel-inspired photography prints.
If you can have dinner with anyone, who would it be and why?
I would like to have dinner with my late grandmother to catch up with her about what has happened in recent years. I would tell her about my two children growing up and I would like to show her how well they are doing. I would tell her about the beautiful journeys I made in the meantime. Alone, but also with my husband and children. And I would tell her how photography still plays a big part in my life!
Describe a real-life situation that inspired your art?
There are a lot of things that inspire me. Especially the simple things in life. I try to find them during my journeys or outside in nature.
Are there any female photographers whose work you admire?
I appreciate the work of many different female photographers. I love to see how each photographer has their own style in which they put all their love, time and artistry.
For me, it's the work that goes into creating that perfect shot & the emotion it elicits.
How do you describe your photography style?
I try to make my images a true reflection - transporting the viewer to feel as if they were there in that place in time, even just for a moment.
For the third edition, we’re pleased to announce Suchi, the artist behind the label The Little Big Things. She is a Dubai-based digital artists from India, who loves to to capture human stories and transform them into playful, whimsical drawings.
What advice would you give to female artists that are starting out?
Since I'm a digital artist, my advice to all who want to explore this highly responsive medium is - Get to know your tools, invest in industry-standard software - Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Procreate are great to learn and explore. Enrol in Skillshare classes to learn from the awesome artists. Create and share it with the world - Get feedback from a varied audience. Draw inspo from the works of others but develop your own style of art, one that is unique just like you! And have FUN in the process (most important!)
How do you make your designs come to life? What goes into the creative process?
I love human stories so I draw them out - people, pets, memories, almost everything a person holds dear in their lives. If you see my art and style of drawing, it's playful, whimsical and has all the little details that finally make us! The most common feedback I've always received from my clients is 'Your drawing makes us smile - It's our story!' And because I draw digitally, my art has been transferred onto print, fabric, embroidery and cakes & cookies too - that's what brings it to life :)
My creative process starts by listening to stories and picking up the finer details. I often sleep on an idea, research and draw references, then doodle a storyboard on paper and finally draw with my pen & tablet. The process also involves edits and additions and that is how my art connects with people around the globe. According to me, the key ingredient to a creative process is to stay authentic, real when you create art - You got to connect with it yourself, first. I love creating art that either speaks to you or is about you.
For the final edition, we’re super excited to announce Art Piece by Afaaf Saeed, an Emirati artist passionate about creating abstract art by painting in a bold, detailed, and non-traditional way. Slowly taking over the wall art scene, one abstract art print at a time.
Who or what inspired you to get into the commercial art industry?
The mixture of excitement and happiness after receiving my first ever order has changed my life. It gave me hope that one day my passion for art will have its style and signature.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome as an emerging artist?
I've always loved art but I never imagine myself doing art as a business while being a mother. But then I realized that having art in my life is like therapy and a life-changing hobby. It helps me feel more confident and gives me the freedom to express my feelings and emotions.
Can you describe your art in 4 words or less?
I love to paint in a bold, detailed, and nontraditional way.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
I’ve read this advice once and it affects me in many ways: “ If you do not start from now, know that you are destroying your goals, and know that if you wait for things to be in order, you may lose all things. As strong as the beginnings are, so are the splendour of the endings. “