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A Place Where You Will Find Loveryly Gifts and a Few Personal Opinions

Saturday, November 20, 2010

I had the privilege of being interviewed for the Spotlight feature on iCraft. This great interview was arranged and conducted by Diane Cipollo, editor of Spotlight.
Her questions were thoughtful and I could tell she had done her research; I was quite impressed.

I thought I would share it with my readers.

Klaire Martin is an artist working in the natural medium of silk fibers and fabric dyes. A retired nurse, she enjoys creating the wonderful silk paintings, scarves and pillows in her Mystic Silks iCraft Creator Exhibit.She starts with pure white silk and the finest French dyes. These organic mediums take on a "mysterious life of their own" resulting in OOAK pieces of art. She uses a custom made steaming pot made from a clam chowder boiler pot for the steaming process that brings out "mysterious images on the silk". The entire process takes many hours but she took time out to share her story with us.
Please give us a brief bio – introduce yourself.Hi, My name is Klaire, also known as MysticSilks. Art has been a part of my life since I was old enough to hold a crayon or paint brush.My professional training came from The Cooper Institute of Art, however I gave that up to become a wife and mother. In between being a wife and mother I attended Kent State University, graduating with a degree in Nursing. And betwixt and between that career, I attended various classes in art. I began silk art as a way of relaxing. According to my art instructor, creating silk art was a ZEN experience: Not for me, I am a Virgo perfectionist!

You have worked in several mediums including oils, acrylics, and watercolors. Why did you decide to concentrate on silk ?Silk art offers me surprises. It has a mysteriousness within the process of creating it.
With the organic nature of the "mystic" silks and dyes, you must get some surprises along the way. Would you share a story about how a "surprise" became one of your favorite works of art?One of those mysterious outcomes is in the painting "Fairies In Our Midst". If you do a zoom in on that painting between the statue's tree stump, and the rose bush, you can see images of people. That was not an intended outcome, but I find it a delightful addition.
You also work in watercolors. One of your watercolors became a Christmas card and was sold to benefit the Residents of Maple Leaf House. Can you tell us a little about how this came about?This was an exciting experience for me and my clients at Maple Leaf Residents. The staff and residents were asked to draw or paint some winter scenes. Prizes would be awarded and the top winner would have their artwork made into Christmas cards plus win a cash award. My clients persuaded me to enter the contest, which I did. I won the 1st prize. The sponsors of the contest had my watercolor "Magic Snowfall" professionally framed plus they published holiday greeting cards using that painting. I was very honored.
Positive and negative feedback is part of the art business. You received a lot of positive reactions to your Picasso's Sun piece which influenced you to create Picasso's Moon. However, your memorial painting of the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001 was not well received at its first hanging in 2002 and again on eBay in 2004. Would you share your thoughts about this controversial piece?That infamous day of September 11, 2001 was traumatic for all Americans. I watched the events of that day happen on TV: It was surreal. A week or so later I found an article written in the Times magazine, plus a photo of the towers: One had been hit, one had a plane coming at it. It was from that photo that I painted the destruction of the Twin Towers. It was cathartic for me to paint it. I captured some American history in that painting. Yes, the feedback from eBay was sad. I wondered if every photographer or painter of the Civil War, or any American war, was reprehended for capturing history? I am in the process of donating that painting to an art museum.
We never see our own art as others see it. One of your less favorite pieces was featured on the front page of Etsy. Can you tell us a little about this pleasant surprise?"Mountain’s Majesty" was the art piece on the front page of Etsy. I finished that piece a couple of years ago, but I guess never really looked at it, I mean really looked at it. I put it in a drawer after I had finished it. It wasn’t until 2 years ago, that I pulled it out, and said, ‘Wow!’ This is good, really good". I framed it and put it up for sale in my Etsy store. And one day someone told me it was on Etsy's front page. I am very critical of my work.

What has been your favorite work so far and why?"Picasso’s Moon" because of the content of that painting and vibrancy of colors.
Can you suggest any books, tutorials or videos that will help the beginner in your choice of medium?Dharma Trading Company offers many books and materials for those who would like to learn the process of creating art on silk.
Thank you Klaire. It's been a pleasure.

Here is a photo of that watercolor painting that won 1st prize, and had Christmas Cards made from the image of that painting:

Its at the top of this page. I never know where my photos will show up on this blog.

Again, thank you iCraft and especially Diane Cipollo.

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