Name of Business: P Jean Designs
How would you describe your art?
I would describe my artwork as experimental clay mixed media and contemporary mixed media. I work with clay mixed media assemblages and acrylic mixed media paintings.
Name some artists that inspire you and why?
There are so many artists that have inspired me and my tastes have changed. Early in life I was inspired by many illustrators and Walt Disney artists. I still collect children’s books for the purpose of the illustrations. But Van Gogh, Klimt, Michael Parks, Lee Bontecou…I could actually go on and on. I’m especially inspired by many local artists and I’m amazed how much the art world had evolved in this area.
Describe your creative process.
My creative process, as far as my clay mixed media, is starting with making clay masks. I usually make several at once to be fired. First lesson in working with clay, never fall in love with your piece. It has to go through several firings and is handled so much, that it can break, or explode or the glaze chosen ruins it. So the masks are bisque fired, glazed, fired again, and then if glazed with raku glaze, either pit fired or raku fired. When this process is done, it’s time to put the idea behind the mask and it transforms.
Along with the masks, I also make other clay pieces to use in the assemblage. A lot of times I break pieces to make the artwork not quite so formed and stiff…not so perfect.
In my acrylic paintings, I usually start by just getting some paint on the canvas with the color pallet I’m going to be using. I usually do have a subject in mind, but an artist once said, “There is an abstract piece of art underneath each piece of art,” and I believe that to be true, at least in the ground work of my art. When the groundwork is done, then I work on the composition and placement of my subjects.
What are your favorite materials/mediums to work with?
My favorite materials to use are clay, acrylics, inks, pastels and wire.
What inspires you to create?
I have a need to be creative. I always have and probably always will, but going to a gallery or museum or just looking at other artists work. I totally get recharged if I’m in a “funk”. Talking with other artists, is like the best time for me and exciting to be in a group that gets need for creating art.
Art to me is a break in reality, a chance to see someone else’s world, and share some of my crazy world to others. I think that art can bring some people out of the darkness, including me, and my art is maybe a little whimsical, theatrical? I’m just hoping it’s a little thought provoking or puts a smile on someone’s face. Art is not always a pretty picture or doesn’t have to match your couch.
What are you trying to communicate with your art?
I think that if one looks at my art, it speaks for itself…it’s just different. I love all art! I’ve collected art my entire life. There are so many wonderful artists, and I don’t just do what they do, but I love it. I love mixed media for me, because I like the look of different mediums, so I incorporate them. I know that there are purists in their mediums, but I certainly think that we have so many new art materials to work with that I want to use them and maybe artwork will keep evolving.
What’s your favorite quote and why?
My favorite quote, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” Pablo Picasso. Or…”Artists are people driven by the tension between the desire to communicate and the desire to hide.” D.W. Winnicott
When did you start making art and why?
Instead of asking me when I started making art, I guess you should ask when wasn’t I making art and I would answer, I don’t know. As a child, I was extremely shy. I found one of my grade school report cards recently and in the remarks, the teacher noted that I would rather stay inside at recess and draw than go out and socialize with the other kids (I was such a weirdo).
What is the most influential piece of art you have experienced?
I love Monet, Toulouse Lautrec, but I was so thrilled to see work by Lee Bontecou. I love her sculptures and art made from all kinds of things, cardboard, pipes, industrial looking assemblages.
Do you have any career highlights you wish to share?
I’m not good a boasting about myself, but I have been so blessed to be in a published art book with some fabulous artists and I had the honor to be in a one man show at Muskingum University. I’ve been in several outdoor shows and some art competitions but every time I am asked to make or display art, it’s a highlight for me.