Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Interview with myself

How did you become interested in art? Have you had any formal art training?

The only art training I ever had was in elementary and in high school. In high school I had an awesome art teacher who somehow knew how to bring out the best in someone when it came to arting. He was very encouraging. During this time - my teens - I joined the art school club. Mostly we made the stage designs for the school´s drama club. These definetely were the largest works of art I ever did.

I also started drawing and painting in my teens, but somehow lost interest in it when I left school and started my first job in 1988. In the mid 1990´s I started again with drawing and painting with watercolors. I´m not sure how I got started. And I made my first quilts then. About ten years later I discovered mail art, especially ATCs.

Where do you live? Do you have family or pets? Tell us a little about yourself.

I´m 41 and live in Remscheid, a town in Northrhine-Westphalia, Germany. My husband and I share our house with two cats, Barrsik and Connor. My parents-in-law live in the same house, together with their cat Quintus. I have my own studio, but I barely work there. My supplies are usually scattered everywhere - not always to my husband´s delight ;) I must admit that I am a totally chaotic and disorganized person. I always was and will be. And I think I´m the world´s worst housewife.

How did you discover ATCs and Mail Art? Why does Mail Art appeal to you?

I discovered ATCs (Artist Trading Cards) and APCs (Artist Postcards - now it´s also used for Altered Playing Cards) via internet. I´ve been member in several patchwork and quilting forums, where we did lots of patchwork block swaps. One day someone came up with a fabric ATC swap. I joined such a swap in 2006, I think, and was hooked. It was about that time that I had a maior depressive episode (I´m bipolar). After a very long stay in hospital and day-time clinic I retired from my job. One of the outgrowth of my disease is the lack of concentration. I´m not able to concentrate or focus on larger projects. So ATCs and other "small" projects like chunkies, skinny pages or whatever are perfect for me.

In 2008 I became a member of ATCsforAll, a wonderful global community for Mail Art artists of all skill levels. Mail Art is a way to easily get connected with other artists. I met so many wonderful people via the internet during the last few years - and last summer I was happy enough to meet a small group of them "In Real Life". We had a little Art Meet-Up in England. That was really great!

What formats do you like and make?

I like expecially ATCs and chunkies (4"x4"). And recently I joined a circle journal trade where we make 8"x8" handdrawn or handpainted journal pages for the other players in their chosen theme. That´s really fun - although it was a real challenge for me in the beginning because of the size.

And I love art journaling. I have several journals for different themes.

Which art themes do you like?

I love nature inspired art, especially trees and bees. Fantasy is great, too. Vintage style cards, especially women and/or tasteful nudes, are wonderful. I also love Steampunk. And - I don´t know why - I also like dark, mysterious, scary, creepy and gothic art.

Do you have any favorite techniques?

Hmmm... - good question! I like drawing with pencils, colored pencils, ink pen, marker. I also work with watercolors, gouache and acylic paints. I love collage and mixed-media art. I´m open to anything - and love to try new things.

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