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Pastels On The Plaza, Arcata, CA

" I wouldn't trade my life as an artist for anything. Being able to see the world through my creative lens, is everything to me."

Photo: Kylee drawing and painting with chalk pastel at Pastels On The Plaza in Arcata, CA. Artists donate their time and artwork to benefit Northcoast Children's Services. Each sidewalk square is sponsored by a business. 

My emotional response to memories and the world around me includes a deep fascination for textures and colors, from my childhood, and from nature. I experiment with materials in ways that manipulate acrylic paint by employing various mediums. I also utilize constructive elements like modeling paste, and cut up pieces of previous work which find their way into my paintings. With a science background, I place a strong emphasis on experimentation, which I find quite enjoyable. My work to me is play time, and a way for my body and mind to rest from the exhausting and fast-paced mentality of the world. At times when I'm surrounded with paper cuttings, I feel as if I am working on a large puzzle, shaping and delicately adhering my scraps to my hand built canvas. Subject matter is ever growing and I allow myself to be fluid with the types of figures, or lack of figures that I decide to illustrate. Each piece tends to take on a whimsical and childlike charm that you might find in children's books, with narratives that may not necessarily be intended for children. Adding the abstract elements to my work allows me to truly let go and the materials take on a life of their own. As I reflect, I am able to see my current state of consciousness as well as my subconscious feelings about that day, that year, and even my life thus far. It's kind of like the ink blot test psychologists use in their practice. While it may seem that my work is bright and fun, each piece may carry a deeper meaning than their playful appearance. As a result, my materials are my vessel. They are the means by which I am able to communicate with the world, since I have a difficult time describing my feelings and thoughts in words at times. My art has been a constant companion and source of hope for me throughout my life. It allows me to let go, and to let all of my feelings flow into my pieces. It's a simple statement, but every mixed media collage or multimedia work that I create helps me to distinguish my voice from the rest of society, and I hope that by doing so, others will be able to do the same.

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