Q&A

How did you develop your own style?

Well, I think style is a process that happens throughout the life of an artist. I know I have been heavily influenced by contemporary fantasy artists whom I admire and also vintage storybook art and advertising design.

Do you have any art education?

I do hold a minor in fine art and while I think it was valuable, especially the drawing classes, I do believe I have learned more about the business of art in the last 7 years in business than I did in school.

I discovered you own a shop at the Minnesota Renaissance festival. Do you plan to do any more of those shows, and how did you start doing that?

The Minnesota Renaissance Festival has been a fun activity that I have looked forward to doing for literally decades so when I started doing art and prints I knew I had to try to get a shop. It isnt easy keeping things clean out in the dust and rain, but it is so much fun to set up shop, and play dress up. It also makes a great opportunity to meet and sign for my friends and fans. I may be doing more festivals in the future. We have been so busy expanding my business at home and keeping up with orders (and sometimes not keeping up) that it hasn’t been top priority yet. When we expand our staff a bit more we will absolutely be doing more shows.

What media do you use in your artwork?

I primarily use watercolors but I love acrylics, pastels, pen and ink and almost anything to make art!

Where do you find inspiration for your work?

Inspiration comes from all around us. Antiques, flea markets, advertising, almost anything can become an inspiration for new work. Often I find inspiration from the people I meet at shows and conventions.

What other hobbies or interests do you have?

I love to collect doorknobs, and antique witch postcards. I love Halloween and love vintage collectibles. I am an avid horsewoman as well and recently made the purchase of a gorgeous Friesian Stallion from artist friend, Jacqueline Collen-Tarrolly.

Where do you like to work?

I can draw anywhere, at the library, at home, sitting at my son’s karate studio. But to paint I need a clean well lit area away from distractions, and I also need some cats…yes, cats are necessary.

What do you think draws people to your work?

That is a question I ask myself a lot. Early on I tried to do more serious and dignified work. I certainly find myself drawn to that as a collector when choosing art for myself. But even my gothic fae turn out a bit sweet, and I guess I just cant change that. I think it is that sweetness and accessibility that draws people to my work. Its simple and definable. It doesn’t need to be figured out, it just is.

Who is your main audience?

Usually women, 9-70 but mostly women ages 30-45 are my collectors. I think we share an aesthetic growing up at the same time with rich fantasy movies and media.

How do you handle criticism?

I learned early on to thicken up and take the fact that not everyone would like my work. Some people find it too cutesy, or say that fantasy isn’t ‘high art’. Of course, I don’t intend to create ‘high art’. I really create illustrative art for myself, and when you love what you do that comes through. Not to everyone, but it comes through to the people who matter to me. I have friends for whom my art isn’t appealing. That is really okay.

How has licensing helped your career?

Licensing made it possible for me to break into the manufacturing market while I was learning the ropes to take on some manufacturing myself. I think many artists have had bad contracts and good ones, but that’s all part of the deal. You just have to make the best decision you can at the time and let a company show you what they can do for you over the long term. In turn I try to keep myself from being a diva by allowing them to prove what they can do for me and my career.

Do you believe in fairies?

Are you kidding? Duh. Of course I do!