perjantai 30. tammikuuta 2015

Blue dusk and heart of winter

Hello blogging friends

I hope everyone are doing great. 

This weeks Inspiration Avenue - challenge is to answer question
 "what winter means to you"

Living in a country where it snows 5 months in a year I'd say for me winter means rest.
Nature sleeps and wakes up in the spring. I myself need much more sleep in the winter months also :)

Finns have a special word for the time just before the night falls - sininen hämärä - the blue dusk

Silent beauty of nature. Snow get's blue like the sky.

Beside rest and beautiful nature winter means colors for me.

Lately I've tried to work with limited color palette.

Little kitty in the shades of blue pink and violet.

Colors also give energy so I've also done some very colorful art.

Abstract art in my artjournal:

This is a WIP of my newest acrylic painting on canvas.

There will be mermaids and sea creatures.

Winter is also great time for relaxing crafts like painting candle jars.
My collection is like a rainbow soon.

Artworks submitted to paint party Friday and IA

Love and light

maanantai 26. tammikuuta 2015

Featured Artist of January 2015 : Monika Holloway

"Unicorn Magic"
(c) Monika Holloway
coloured pencil and PanPastel on Stonehenge paper, 

Hello blogging world :)

It's time for the first featured artists interview of 2015. 
This time I'm interviewing greatly talented Monika Holloway.

Tell us about yourself. Who you are and what kind of artist you are?

I'm self-taught fantasy & fairy artist based in the UK. I work mainly with watercolors and colored pencils but I love exploring new mediums. I recently started incorporating acrylics into my work and I'm also learning how to paint with oils.  There is so much to learn and so little time...

I love creating whimsical fantasy worlds and filling them with creatures who inhibit these places - fairies- unicorns - mermaids and elves. I also enjoy painting fantasy/surreal portraits and landscapes - they are great fun.

I'm also a violinist, an avid book lover and a mother of three very cute but also very demanding children. They are my biggest fans and harshest critics at the same time.

"Dreams take flight"
(c) Monika Holloway
watercolor and colored pencils on illustration board
11,5 x 14,5

"The Sorceress"
Watercolor, colored pencil and acrylics on illustration board
11,5 x 14,5 (c) 
Monika Holloway

How did you started your artistic hobby/career? 

I first started painting about four years ago after discovering fantasy art, literally stumbling across it. I quickly became fascinated and inspired by existing work of some of the fantasy artists. Seeing all that magic they create I decided to learn how to paint with watercolors  and it just took off from there. In less than a year I was already selling my work trough Facebook and Etsy and I never looked back - art has become not only my passion but also a profession. I feel like I'm rediscovering myself trough art, like I've finally found my voice.

"Hidden Treasure"
Watercolor and colored pencils on illustration board
11,5 x 14,5
(c) Monika Holloway

"Mermaid's treasure"
watercolor on illustration board
11,5 x 14,5
(c) Monika Holloway

What are things that inspire you?

My biggest inspiration is and always will be nature. Nothing can measure up to the beauty of this world we live in, there is no question about that. We humans aren't the best part of it and perhaps that's the reason I prefer to paint and draw fairies, mermaids and all kinds of fantastical creatures. I struggle to find beauty in humans but I believe we can find peace and redeem ourselves trough love - and that also means love and respects for nature because we would mean nothing without it.

Do you have message in your art?

It's a difficult question. Every artwork I create bears a different message. Sometimes hidden within the title of the painting, sometimes within the way I portray my characters/settings. I enjoy using symbols in my art. I just drop them there and let the viewer find them and make their own interpretation.

"Winter Rose"
watercolor and colored pencils on illustration board
11,5 x 14,5
(c) Monika Holloway

Do you tips for aspiring artists?

Only one: never give up. Every single one of us gets told "No" many, many times along the way but we must never give up or let it affect us. I'm still at the stage where I hear "No" a lot more often than "Yes" but I strongly believe we must never loose focus and forget what we've set off to do - creating art is a journey and if that's what we love, if that's what sings in our hearts then no amount of rejection will change that. Sure people will try to knock us down, sure we will doubt ourselves plenty of times along the way. But if you are an artist, you'll quickly get used to that. Trick is to pick yourself up and carry on learning, discovering and creating. Let the rejection motivate you to become even more fabulous.

Where can we find your works?

You can also find me on Twitter @monikaholloway

Many thanks to Monika for taking part of this series of interviews and sharing your beautiful artworks and stories behind them.

Much love and light

sunnuntai 4. tammikuuta 2015

Soft hearts

I hope you've all had lovely time in these past few months.
Nature is sleeping here.

 My holidays went peasefully and I managed to leave time for creativity also.

Here's my latest painting called "Soft hearts".
I'm planning to print some greeting cards soon for the spring (valentine's day, easter ect.)

“That's the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you.”  
- Ray Bradbury

 "Soft hearts"
(c) Niina Niskanen
watercolors on paper

 Greeting cards and other products made from this design here.