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Art & Life with Michelle Owenby

Today we’d like to introduce you to Michelle Owenby.

Michelle, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
Although I believe that every story has a beginning + an end, it is hard for me to pinpoint when or where my artistic story started + it certainly has not yet ended. From the time I was 7 years old, I started creating + crafting things with my hands + come from a long line of “makers” but, about 2 1/2 years ago, I had what I like to call a Mid-Life Miracle. It was an awakening! Thankfully, this profound blessing started a movement in me that has begun a remolding + remaking of my life, my heart + my Spirit. This “newness” in me is truly the crux of my current artistic life.

Now, all that being said, Southern is written all over me. It’s undeniable. I spent, what I now consider to be a shameful amount of years trying NOT to be Southern. If I’m being really honest, I was a little ashamed of it: hated my accent, avoided traditions, wanted to live in an urban landscape, aspired to something more “polished”. I now realize that all of those Southern parts of me (every last one of them), is what forms the foundation of my art + who I am today. From learning to crochet + quilt with my Cherokee grandmother to the art of trout fishing in the NC mountains with my Dad, all of it informs my work. The Southern heritage that was instilled in me is all about kindness, manners + respect, helpfulness, hospitality, charm + charity and, of course, good music + food. All of those things, to me, are joyful, inspired, loving, peaceful pursuits + that is what I hope my art conveys.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I am a Modern (mostly minimalist) Watercolor Artist. I love working in abstracts + geometrics on both paper + textiles. But, beyond that, I truly believe that almost everything you do in life is art if you treat it as such. Most of my inspiration comes from exploring the finite + infinite, the hard + the soft, the dark + the light, the material + the spiritual. That combined with my love of nature + family are the things that really move me.

My hope in my work is that I can introduce a kind of beauty that will bring a smile, soothe a heart, evoke an emotion, open an eye to the beauty that is everywhere. Each of my works are faithfully purposed for peace + happiness, painted by imperfect hands + offered with loving intentions!

In your view, what is the biggest issue artists have to deal with?
So, I think one of the biggest challenges artists face today is time management. Social media + online platforms have created all of these amazing opportunities for me + for many other artists; for most of us, it is one of the only ways our work gets seen in the beginning. However, all of those outlets along with the day-to-day operations require an incredible amount of time, energy + creativity that I wish were reserved solely for the “making” of art.

Essentially, you have to become a really great manager of your time (which isn’t always an artist’s forte’) by figuring out how to navigate all the areas of being an artist these days as a corporation of 1, so to speak. I’m doubled over laughing about all the titles you hold as an artist: Artist, Owner, President, Secretary, General Manager, Marketing + Merchandiser, Finance + Office Manager, Strategist, Editor/Writer, Public Relations, Media Relations, Customer Relations, Programmer, Web Master + Social Media Management Extraordinaire!! And… I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Maybe some extra time!!

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
I’ve been blessed in a short amount of time by some amazing exposure opportunities. I initially established my own website so, you can always find my work there + sign up for my newsletter to get all the inside scoop + updates. I also actively use Instagram + Facebook so you can see what’s happening in real time.

Currently, my work is represented by my amazing partners at Straight to Art, an online artist collective. They helped me form a relationship + connect with Chairish so my work can be found with them as well.

I recently became an award-winning artist with Minted, the premier online marketplace of independent artists + designers. You can find selected pieces of my art there + also commission me through them.

I love to work with small, local retail businesses to get my work out in my community + regularly have local exhibitions + collection releases.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Christine Hamrick Photography

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