If you could use a peaceful place to rest your mind and your eyes right now visit @hmr.art. You'll want to take some deep breaths and relax amongst her calming abstracts and nature-themed works.
Every shop beginning takes a little courage. Tell me about your mental transition from creating as a hobby to deciding to open shop and put your art out publicly.
Honestly, there wasn't a huge mental transition for me. I had hit a point where I was in survival mode and opened my shop purely out of need. I had been painting intermittently as a hobby for many years and when I quit working to stay home with my pup during his final months, I had to find a way to pay the bills. So, I just dove right in and hoped for the best. As an artist, business tends to fluctuate; so, years later, I still always find myself hoping (worrying) for the best.
Tell me about the first painting you ever sold and how it felt.
Like a lot of artists, I had been gifting art to family and friends for a long time. Several years ago, a co-worker saw my work and asked if he could pay me to paint his dog in a landscape setting. I was so worried about whether or not it would match what he had imagined and it felt really strange to take a lot of money for something I was so unsure about. Yet, I also felt this tremendous pride in having created something meaningful and beautiful for someone else to enjoy indefinitely.
Your feed is so lovely. You are a perfect example of a shop that has a distinct, curated look and I'm in awe. Do you have any practical tips on how you accomplish this?
Aw, thanks! While a curated shop/feed is nice visually, I think most of us would agree that it's the quality of the message, what's being made, and our connection to it that matters most. That said, I can't help but laugh at this a little (it's become a slight obsession for me)! I started out with photos of artwork balancing precariously on my bathroom sink because it was the only bright spot in the house. Eventually, I invested in a couple daylight bulbs, a Professor Kobre's Lightscoop for my camera, and built a quick shelf, which is where most of my photos are taken. I would say, if you're thinking of curating your feed - look for something in common from one photo to the next (whether it's styling, color/s, theme, etc.). I use a great app called Previewgrid - a quick way to plan ahead and see what everything will look like.
What is currently on your table or in the queue that you are really excited about?
I’m really excited about my abstract pieces at the moment. They were completely unexpected (a way to keep creating through some ongoing hand troubles) but there is something that also feels familiar about them. I think it's that each piece uniquely finds a way to express and share my love for our natural world. They also allow me to play, get messy, and stretch my comfort zone - so good for the soul (give it a try, y'all)!
Is there a medium, tool or style that you have been giddy to try?
Umm, always! I love exploring new means of creating, but since budget and the environment are both big concerns for me, I typically opt for creative solutions/repurposing. You'll find toothbrushes, nails, sewing needles, etc. among my tools.
So pretend that you're having coffee with someone that has considered sharing her art but is feeling shy. What do you tell her from across the table?
What's the best and worst that can happen? Imagine your worst, and if that happens, the world keeps moving and you can say you tried (and will hopefully keep trying), right? Imagine the best, and if that happens, it could change everything. It's so important to remember that our worth comes from the inside, our efforts, our attitude, our heart. Sharing art that's not well received on social media (or anywhere) shouldn't leave you feeling defeated. The next day or the next year, that same piece might find it's perfect home. That's the beauty of art, we all see and appreciate differently. If something is important to you, it's worth sharing.
<Check out Heather and her current work at hmr.art>