23 February 2014

Artist State of Mind | A Letter from Carrie Ellen

So excited to be featuring another fellow blogger, a Miss Carrie Ellen right here on BSOM. I've been following her blog, Carrie Ellen Art Studio, since I was first introduced to blogging by Nelli last year, in fact her blog was the first one I followed :) Carrie's work and blog has been a huge inspiration to me! I really love how she is always dabbling with different mediums and her style of work is amazing! Of course I was stoked when she agreed to this feature! So without further ado here's her story... 

Meet Carrie Ellen

As I sit down in the middle of my room, laptop in hand ready to answer any questions you may have, I look around my room.  Sketchbooks and paper are scattered around  like big pieces of confetti, boxes of  colored pencils, pins, and carving tools are waiting for their chance to be used to make a master piece, big sheets of wood are leaning against the walls and doors. The only books in my room that aren't art or poetry books are not to be found, they seem to be hidden, and havent seen the light of day in some time. With fabrics, yarns, inks, paints, brushes...my room is a wave of possibilities. Some may think that I would drowned in a overwhelming messy room, but I am surrounded by what makes me want to get up each morning. 

My passion for the arts started when I was very young. Let me tell you now.I was never the black sheep of the family. My family (full of artists) knew the importance of all the arts. Growing up my parents would drag us kids to art galleries, museums, performances - anything that was local and free. I grew to appreciate and love all the arts. As I got a little older my mama went back to school to get her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Once in awhile she would let me go with to her art classes. One of the classes happened to be an Art History class. Though I was only 10 years old, I was fascinated! I knew at age 10 I wanted to be an artist.


When I found out during my high school years that I could take art classes in school, I had to enroll in as many art classes as I could in a semester. I was fortunate that my school had a good art program. My school offered classes from painting to drawing, photography to sculpture, jewelry to stagecraft. I wanted to know it all. Soon enough I found my self at the same college that my mother went to and taking the same classes. 

Now, after years of exploring different mediums, my style has changed over the years. I have explored painting womens faces, playful animals, landscapes, and still lifes. I was fascinated with creating happenings, postcard art,  painting saints and then circling back around to working with women. Its important to let one's work flow and evolve into something new. This is how we learn as artists. An artist doesn't need to  feel like she/he has to stick with one style or medium.  We as artist will have bad days, weeks and even years! But to that, here is what I say: Keep making art! If its bad art, push it and see how bad you can make it look. Sometimes something will come out of it. Dont worry about what others may think of your art. Create your piece and move on to the next project. Keep going forward and make a lot of art. Good or bad it doesnt matter just keep moving forward. Try not to get hung up on one painting or idea. Push it to the side and go on to something else. Dont let artist block get you down! We all have it. If you're stuck, pick up a new medium, learn a new type of art. The way to get though it is TO MOVE FORWARD and go through it!

One thing that Im grateful for was exploring different mediums. Thats how printmaking came in to my life. I do a lot with watercolor and ink, I have used it off and on through out my life but, I have worked with woodcut only for a short time. Dont let the fear of being bad at something scare you into not trying it. Who knows what will come out of it. You may find out that you love it more then the medium that you have been working with all your life. Working with new things makes me feel like that Im rediscovering art again.  One day I want to learn how to blow glass, write poetry, work with music, try welding again, maybe even work with wood and build furniture. 

What inspires me and what influences me comes from every day things, from how Im feeling that day, to where my family came from. For example my family is Scandinavian, my dad lived in Copenhagen, Denmark for part of his life. I love pulling Scandinavian styles into my wood cuts - it's a way for me to explorer and discover where I came from. I also come from a Christian background, the imagery of saints has always fascinated and influenced my art. I love incorporating the idea of modern every day saints into my art. My art is a way to find myself and who I am and who Im becoming. Its my way of communicating with others and finding out where I am going in life. 

Art is a crucial part of life from exploring oneself to expressing who you are to others. You can see it in everyday things from friends' Instagrams and Vines to Blogs we log on to see. We want to connect and share. The art world has gotten more accessible to everybody. I love to sit in my kitchen with tea, draw in my sketchbook then take a photo and share it on Instagram,  Facebook or my Blog. We as artists can share with each other from miles and miles away. We can become friends with an artist that is just starting out in Denmark, Rome or Oklahoma. Social media can be a another medium to express yourself. So go on! Explore! Express! Share!

Your Arty friend,
Carrie Ellen 

 BIG thanks and shout out to Carrie for her contribution to this blog!! 

 P.S. Carrie works hard on her craft please don't use any of her photos without her permission!

Want to see more of Carrie's work?! Check out her blog Carrie Ellen Art Studio and her Instagram !!!! 


Until next time friends...Cheers!!! 

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