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What is your identity? Are you the type of person who says I am ( fill in description here), with the kind of confidence that escapes the rest of us? I heard a man once say, "I am just a simple man." Is there such a thing? Can a man or woman be simple? I have to admit, I have neither the confidence or wisdom to say, matter of fact, that I know who I am. Am I an Artist? Am I a mother? Serious or sarcastic? Shy or vain? Idiot or an inventor? A friend, lover, explorer? What or who am I? Does what I do make up who I am? And if that is the case, I am anything but simple. I am a sack of flesh with more than one identity. I am all these identities and more. Because, who I am is constantly changing. Sometimes I even moonlight as a writer with aspirations beyond my own abilities, in all honesty. Sometimes I am a self conscience schoolgirl who must put lipstick on in order for others to not think she is not too homely. Stupid? Yes. But my identities come and go, they take hold of my flesh and live inside me until another identity moves in, some cohabitate, but not often, in my case. I admit to being complicated, but one at a time please.
I have convinced myself into thinking I am one identity. Check. I have also spewed confidence only to crumble under the weight of it. Check, check. "Find yourself" so the saying goes. Bitter, shallow words. A ridiculous concept. How does one find something that is not lost? And why can a person only relate to you if they know who you are? Are you a man, woman, mother, single, banker, waiter... (Fill in another blank here)? Oh yes, I can relate to you now, because we have the same identity. Sure. Right. Whatever. Can't a person have the compassion to recognize that every human being has differences, multiple identities, what have you, right at the get go and not have to relate to a certain one? Or hey, I don't know, how about relate to them all. Because in the end, we are all sacks of flesh putting on interchangeable identities.
I am connected to everything before me and after me. I am something and will be nothing. I am more than mass and matter but I am mass and matter. I am not alone yet I am alone, as it is, every thought in my head has only me to hear it.
Kurt Vonnegut said it best:
'Be careful what you pretend to be because you are what you pretend to be.'
I read this quote in 7th grade and it will forever be a part of my identity.
I am not a 'simple (wo)man'.
I simply am.
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Q & A
Why are your "girls" mostly the same?
Yes, they all are alike and all different. I almost always draw a girl, for one, because I am one and because honestly, men remain a mystery to me. The girls have a doll-like quality about them. I love porcelain dolls because their beauty is fantastic and unrealistic. It is obvious they have a big influence on my work. I can not help but be mesmerized by them. I feel sad that their existence is purely superficial. I can relate to that idea, that our bodies are a superficial existence. The girls are just like you and I. We are all the same and different. I have compassion for the human condition. I want to emphasize the fact that we all have humanity in common yet are individuals.
Why do you work with silhouettes?
They are the perfect medium on which to explain my feelings about identities. I think they are more easily related to without the influence of our own reality.
What are your influences?
People? Ultimately I have been influenced by my mother and father. They are people who struggled with their own 'roles' and 'identities' with humility. And also by their creativity, both artists in their own right. I have a complex history and can say that my life has been both bitter and sweet. Mostly, sweet I think. My perspective is to look at life as a chance to learn and grow. I love people. I think they are beautifully complicated.
And as for art? Low brow, manga, fantasy artists ( I can credit my dad for the sci-fi geek in me - when I was young my dad and mom called me 'Carifairy', everyone would give me fairy books and art. I went through a major fairy phase. Embarrassing? A little. But it was magical and I loved it), poster art, pop art, surrealism.... and of course vintage illustrators and fairy art. One of my favorite artists right now is Jin Young Yu.
What is your process or medium?
This one is complicated. Jeremy (my mister) will tell you that I draw, sketch, doodle all the time. I also have a habit of waking up the middle of the night to put a note/idea in my cell phone. I guess, I usually start out with an idea or a feeling, then just go to work. I may use photography, digital painting, or pastels etc. Lately, I have been using many mediums together in very untraditional ways. I also love reworking the same materials. It is like listening to a song you love and playing it over and over again until you have had enough. But as far as using the mediums, for an example, in one of my pieces (a small bubble glass cameo girl), I started by pencil drawing the character then put her into my pc via scan or photo ( I shrink her down digitally because I am lazy and hate drawing faces smaller than a quarter, but want her to have the right shading and depth of a larger piece- It is harder but I love small pieces, go figure) I make a background for her with digital painting, photo textures, my own traditional paintings, patterns etc. Then, I will finish her up with some graphite, charcoal or pastels. I love to ad paper cutting here and there also. I always have to have a mix. It wouldn't make sense to me to not pull from everything I have learned, or else why learn it? Who says you have to do it 'this way'? Not me. I think art is very much about exploring and learning. I don't know if I will ever teach, but I will absolutely be a student for eternity.