Today I'm very happy to welcome artist Vivienne Strauss, one of my favorite artists who works in both collage and painting. Vivienne was a featured guest for last year's session of 30 Days of Collage, and I'm delighted to share some of her recent work and her inspiring thoughts with you here today.
Welcome Vivienne and please tell us about yourself, what you do, and tell us about 5 of your favorite things.
I work as an artist creating works in oil, watercolor, collage, fiber and the occasional written word.
I love coffee, nature, books, old or foreign films, vintage ephemera, and of course animals - wild and domestic!
Where do you live, what do you like about it - and what place would you most like to visit one day?
I live in Peterborough, New Hampshire, US with my husband, dog and cats. We love the unspoiled beauty of New Hampshire, being close to larger cities but also right smack in the middle of woods and wildlife. It is so hard to pick just one place to visit - Budapest, Hungary - I would love to be surrounded by all that art nouveau architecture.
I love Budapest too Vivienne, it's one of my favorite European cities!
How do you manage to keep a good life/work balance and stay healthy and fit?
I try to stick to a routine of exercising early in the day that way it is done and it also gives me energy and clears my head for a more productive work day. I also get out and walk periodically during the day, my dog gives me no other option.
What is the most exciting adventure you ever had?
The most recent excitement was this past winter - having a bobcat that was very present in our yard and getting to capture it in photographs. I feel so lucky to live in a place where wild birds and animals feel safe and allow us to see them fairly frequently.
What are your favorite upcoming creative projects for 2014, and could you share some advice to those who would like to pursue a more creative, artistic path too?
One of the collaborations I'm working on this year with friend, writer Rebecca Cox is one I'm pretty excited about. sixty seconds is the book title - an assortment of 60 minutelovestories (anywhere from #1-#106) with original chapter heading collages that I'll be creating. The book will be printed in with an LA-based printing house.
My advice is to not limit your mediums. I go through periods where I feel blocked with painting but find I am able to be creative with some other medium that in turn inspires me to paint again. Lately I've been really inspired with bird collages -- can't seem to stop!
Thank you Vivienne for sharing with us today! Your work and ideas are always wonderful and unique.
You can read more about Vivienne's creative process and see more of her collage artwork in her 30 Days of Collage interview here.