I came across Alice Jones from Niceties when she did a sweet blog post about my artwork and how I had inspired her to pick up a paintbrush again, that was back in March (it seems like we have known each other longer than that!). Ever since I have been a regular follower, reading her blog, tweets and visiting her on Facebook almost daily. Alice is a lovely and talented girl who creates in her spare time. She dreams of making a name for herself in the future, but for now is content on developing her skills and refining her style without any pressure. Recently when I started the Monthly Painters Challenge (MPC) I knew I had to have Alice in the group and was so thrilled when she said YES! This week Alice took the time to chat with me about herself, her practice and the MPC.
Who is Alice Jones? I'm a 22 year old media geek located in Wellington, New Zealand, but living vicariously through the internet. When I'm not working or sleeping, I'm often researching, planning, or creating a new work of art.
In six words describe your practice. Hobby, experimental, gestural, feminine, animate, varied.
How long have you been creating and how did you get started? I've been drawing and painting my whole life, on and off. When I got old enough for art became an option subject at intermediate school, there was just no way I wasn't going to choose it. Art's been 'my thing' as far back as I can remember, though aside from school requirements I didn't really get serious about it in my spare time until I moved into an apartment on my own in 2009, and then participated in a group exhibition.
Where do you find inspiration for your work? I spend a lot of time browsing the internet, and follow countless art and fashion blogs. I don't know whether my subject matter is terribly 'inspired' at present, but I definitely take a lot of technical inspiration from the blogs I follow, and I love looking at high resolution images of paintings. During the summer I love browsing art galleries around the city, though I'm usually a bit to lazy for that during the winter! I love getting in close to a painting- seeing tiny imperfections in other people's work always makes me feel a lot less concerned about my own mistakes. My biggest inspiration just comes from seeing what other young artists around the world are working on. I also love fashion models and photography- no matter what medium I'm working in or subject I'm working on, for some reason studying beautiful photography keeps me motivated.
Who are the people that influence and inspire you? My favourite artists are Egon Schiele and Christopher Reiger. I think I'm still influenced by 'contemporary' artists I studied at high school, such as Robert Rauschenberg and especially Sigmar Polke. I'm inspired by many young artists I've come into contact with online- several I've interviewed on my blog, and I have more of those coming up. I'm inspired (and awestruck) by artists who create new pieces daily- staying motivated is my biggest challenge when it comes to art!
What has been the highlight for you over the last year? I'm just really proud of myself for actually putting my work out for the world to see in this past year- blogging regularly, setting up a Facebook page, and making my first ever sales (five sales, two commissions!) I feel like I spent too long creating pieces which I only either kept hidden away, or gave away as gifts- I haven't had an art-related job, and selling my work was just a 'someday...' dream. It's been fantastic to stop that silly attitude, and just start doing it.
What are your experiences with being involved in the MPC?
I was extremely honoured to be invited into this group by Tracey, and thoroughly enjoyed working to complete my submission for the first challenge. I did find it a little daunting, as I had no idea what everyone else was working on, and how my piece would compare. We are all currently working on our second pieces, and I'm feeling a lot more relaxed about it now that I know everyone else's direction for the 'light' challenge, and no longer concerned about pushing a challenge topic in my own direction. Moving forward I'm excited about continuing to improve my technical skills when working on canvas (not a challenge requirement, but something I'm keen to practice), and attempting to be more creative in my interpretation of each topic.
Where to next? What's on the Horizon? Number one priority is to keep doing my Monthly Painters Challenge submissions, because even one painting a month is more than what I had been doing! But I really hope to add to that by spending even more time creating, and eventually feeling prepared and confident enough to exhibit alone!
I enjoyed that chat, it was so enlightening, Alice you are inspiring!
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