This week I have had the wonderful privilege of interviewing one of my best friends, Violette Clark.
She is a very inspiring local Artist who will not hesitate to offer others creation tips and know how, which others might hold close to their chest as if they were the trade secrets being watched over by the Creative Mafia (ha ha). I have only known her for a few short years, but she never ceases to amaze me with what ideas she can come up with. Violette, is my McGyver. Give her a tooth pick, some gauze, a bit of modge podge, paint, a dash of glitter and a styrofoam ball and she will create an amazing whimsical little doll for you.
Her first book, ‘Journal Bliss’, is now on the shelves and ready for you all to enjoy!
Earlier this week I sent off my 5 questions to Violette for her STUDIO BLOG TOUR and know I would like to share them and her insightful responses with all of you.
Nicci: Violette, you have definitely jumped across many borders (actually you probably twirled across them) which others would be too terrified to cross. When you purchased the ‘Magic Cottage’ and began to make it your very own, did you have any internal battles with yourself before you allowed the Artist Violette to be free and paint your home with complete abandon and juiciness?
Violette: Yes of course I had internal battles because I was used to many of my ideas being vetoed. So actually having a Carte Blanche so to speak and being able to do whatever my little heart desired was a bit daunting at first. The cool thing is though I had lots of friends – my Bohemian Tribe who encouraged me to do whatever I wanted to artistically in my home. Not only were they willing to “give me permission” to be outrageous but also some of them came out and helped me transform the Magic Cottage from drab to funky and juicy! We wrote on the walls as in the bathroom and faux finished the living room with “smooshing” and added mosaic’s to the kitchen backsplash.
Don’t get me wrong – I did hear the voice of reason in my head that would shout “Are you nuts?? You can’t write on the bathroom wall!”. That voice
was silenced by my friends who would say “Go for it”. It’s very liberating when you are given permission to truly be who you are inside! I know that you have unleashed that creative Genie on your wonderful colourful home too Nicci!
Nicci: What event in your life or moment was it that the light sparked on and you knew that you were an Artist?
Violette: Well I can’t say that there was one defining moment that sticks out in my mind. When I was little I always created art however I’m not sure if I embraced the idea that I was an artist. Later as a young adult I created cartoons, political cartoons and illustrations but rarely would you hear me blurt “I’m an artist!” So I’m thinking that I eventually summoned up the courage after my marriage ended when I was in my early 40’s to finally say I was an artist. What most likely put me over the edge was all of the support of my tribe of friends. They believed in me so perhaps it was time I believed in myself. I think that was the closest thing I could say was my defining moment.
Nicci: You have talked about using the creation of art as therapy to help yourself and others work through difficult times. When has creating art saved you the most and do you have another therapeutic outlet that works for you and you are willing to share.
Violette: Awesome question Nicci! Well you probably know that I have suffered from depression quite a bit throughout my life. I found that even though I’ve been an artist almost my entire life I never really realized how art could be used as a tool for healing until several years ago. I was stuck and depressed and one day began to combine writing with art in my journal – which I must say sort of spilled onto the page in a very organic fashion.
After creating a few such pages which addressed the feelings I had deep inside I moved from a place of depression to one of feeling empowered. I was no longer stuck. My other therapeutic outlet is to be out in nature – to go for a walk in nature and just be and experience the moment. Since I live near the ocean I love sitting by the shore and imagining that the waves are washing over me, taking away the sadness with them as they wash out to sea. It’s as if my troubles are the flotsam and jetsam in the ocean and are whooshed out with the waves. It’s a great way to visualize your troubles leaving you!
Nicci: What attracts you to other Artists work? Colour, whimsy, layout, …?
Violette: Oh I believe that “art with heart” generally attracts me. Colour and whimsy for sure are something I tend to look for in art. I love patterns as is probably evidenced with the use of checkers and repeated doodles in my work. Inspirational art, art with meaning and humour attracts me too. I guess the humour part comes from being a cartoonist. When I created political cartoons in the past they tended to ridicule politicians which certainly does not feel right today. I prefer art that uplifts and empowers people.
The world can use all of the joy and whimsy and inspiration it can get don’t you think?
Nicci: A favourite questions borrowed from ‘Inside an Actors Studio’ with a little twist…. :
What is your favourite creative curse word? Mine is “Fudge!”.
Violette: Oh that’s an easy one…….my favourite creative curse word is “Fraggle Rock” which used to be a Muppet show but has been adopted as a funny curse word. I often would say “What the fraggle rock????!!” You know …… instead of saying that other nasty word which comes with a negative charge!
Violette, thank you for indulging me and answering my questions. You are a wonderful lady and a very inspiring Artist. I wish you all the best of success with your first of many art books.
BLOG Readers, make sure you order a copy of Violette’s ‘Journal Bliss’ today, as it is a MUST HAVE for all creative Glitter Gal Goddess like us!
Keep smiling & creating!
PHOTOS: have been borrowed from the wonderful Violette, herself.