Interview with artist Jenny Grant
by Miriam Schulman, @schulman art, edited by Stefanie Hindmarch
SchulmanArt: Where are you from and how do you think your background has influenced you as an artist?
|A peek into Jenny’s studio.. see more on her blog|
Jenny Grant: I am Swedish living in Mount Maunganui, New Zealand. My Swedish background probably makes me drawn to earthy colors and to light and contrast. Moving to New Zealand definitely gave me an opportunity to focus on my art and establish myself as an artist locally as well as online.
SchulmanArt: How long have you been selling your art?
Jenny Grant: I have been selling my art since 2010 and I have been selling online since 2012. My Etsy shop has just opened. I have been painting since I was a kid and the decision to exhibit and sell my art was not a very conscious decision. I was browsing through a small local boutique and suddenly asked the owner if she was interested to exhibit and sell my art. I was very surprised by my own question. I have exhibited my art since then both in Sweden and New Zealand and my art is sold locally and online.
|Follow Jenny Grant on Facebook for more of her art.|
SA: Tell us about your art making process…
JG: I love working with mixed media but I also love acrylic paints. It is such a versatile medium. Acrylics dry fast, are water soluble, and work very well with other media. Acrylics can be used on almost any kind of surface. I also love to add media and gels to the paint and to collage paper to my canvas. I work in many layers and my art is very rich in depth and texture. I love the way I can use the acrylic paint to glue paper to my canvas, spray with water to form drips, or use stencils to build texture. I love when I do not have full control, such as when the paint is dripping or I splash the paint on the canvas. I also love that the acrylics can be used either transparent or opaque.
SA: How do you get inspired?
|See what inspired Jenny on Pinterest!|
JG: My inspiration varies over time, but right now it is my inner true self that inspires me. I am trying to listen, and when I feel that I resonate with something, I paint it. When I find my flow there is a direct contact to my inner voice; an endless source of inspiration! My art is created while I paint. My intuition leads me through the process. I start with a lot of different colors and paint, or use collage paper glued to the canvas. The imagery slowly develops during the process. Either it appears in the paint on the canvas or in my mind, and I get the urge to paint it. I am trying not to worry about the final result until the final layers. I work on several paintings at the same time, in different stages. When I get stuck on one I usually get inspiration to work on one of the others. I hang my unfinished work in different places around the house, such as the kitchen and the living room. I love having them around when I do house work and hear comments from my friends and family. When the paintings “speak to me”, or I get inspiration to continue, I bring them to my studio. In my art journal I try new techniques and media. I love working in the journal to loosen up and let go when I feel stuck. I focus much less on the result when working in my art journal.
|Collect Jenny Grant’s art on Etsy|
SA: What is your studio space like?
JG: I have my studio in my garage at the moment which is not an optimal room for light nor for beauty, but it is perfect for me. Having small kids limits the time I can spend in the studio, and by having the studio in my garage both my kids and I have easy access. We use the space all the time! A lot of creative time is spent there.
|See more of Jenny’s art on Society6|
I have three kids. My two oldest are 9 and 7 and they are very creative. They spend a lot of time in my studio playing with paint, cardboard boxes, hot glue, and anything else that is available. They love bringing their friends into the studio. My youngest is 2, so he has just started to draw and paint. I think it is very important to let the kids be creative and not steer their creativity. It is important that they can create when they get the urge to do so. I believe that one of the most important things we can give our kids is to let them be creative, encourage them to be brave and to make mistakes, and to have fun!
Want to get inspired by the beauty of New Zealand? Check out these picks from etsy!