What led you to start creating your art/craft?
I have always created something: Paintings, quilts, murals, mosiacs, miniature environments of dirt, leaves, toys and twigs carefully placed in my little red wagon. I started making jewelry about six years ago after receiving a pretty little beaded bracelet for Christmas and thinking: I can do that!
How did you decide what medium you wanted to work with?
I didn't! My first shop on Etsyhttp://www.13moonsart.etsy.com/ features jewelry, fused glass suncatchers and mosaic mirrors, and I just started a new one http://www.anitabarnard.etsy.com/ for Fine art: paintings, collage and art mosaics. Right now I have a painting to finish out on the deck and an unfinished mosaic and all it's little pieces of rocks and tiles spread out on my kitchen table.
What aspect of creating your art/craft do you find the most enjoyable?
I love envisioning and planning and sometimes actually dreaming about designs and images of things to make, and then seeing them begin to come together. I also have a secret fetish for graph paper...but often pieces veer off from the plan and take off in their own directions during the actual creation process.
If you had to choose a fruit OR a vegetable, to describe your art/craft, what would you choose, and why?
A pomegranate: It's very red and lush. There are all those seeds, like the many little pieces of separate materials that make up a collage or a mosaic or a beaded necklace. It has that tough skin and isn't always immediately accessible, but it's worth it when that tart-sweet burst of juice hits your tongue.
If you had to choose one other medium in which to display your "Creativity", what would that be, and why?
I quilted a lot a number of years ago, but just standard quilts, baby quilts. I see so many beautiful, intricate and intriguing art quilts, and they tempt me to get out my fabric stashes and set up the sewing machine again. But I'd have to pack away a lot of other art supplies to make a spot for it.
What message, if any, do you want to convey with your art/craft?
I don't think I'm trying to send a certain message. If I could cause world peace and eliminate hunger with my jewelry and art, that would be wonderful, but I'm really just trying to create something beautiful or intriguing or thought-provoking or just pleasing...I think that's a good goal...to just please someone, even if it is mostly myself, by the process of painting or turning what I've envisioned into reality. I also like the idea of another person looking at my work and relating to it in his or her own way and attaching his own meaning and connections to the piece. This is why I always have a hard time writing artist statements for exhibits; I hate the idea of having to explain a piece of art.
What advice do you have for other artists/crafters?
"Let the beauty we love be what we do." -Rumi Enjoy what you are doing and don't give up.Connect with other artists and craftsmen. A local as well as an online artist community to share your ideas and work and concerns with is a wonderful thing. They will understand and support you.
Anita, thanks for a very "insightful" and "delightful" interview, and also for sharing all your wonderful artistic creations with us. Be sure to visit both of Anita's Etsy shops by clicking on the photos or links below.