Thursday, July 10, 2014

Artist Profile: Cynthia St. Charles

Cynthia St. Charles
Billings, Montana

1.  Describe your signature style in 5 words: Handprinted, surface designed, layered collage
2.  Do you ever work in another medium and, if so, what is it and what appeals to you about it? Mixed Media.  I am currently creating a  4 x 6" mixed media postcard every day as a creative discipline.  I love combining collage, paint, print, and sketch.  The small daily exercise is really great for developing my self confidence and composition.

3.  What's coming up for you in your artistic world?  I have work in several traveling SAQA Exhibitions;  Celebrating Silver, Radical Elements, and Earth Stories. I am gearing up to curate the SAQA exhibition; Balancing Act in 2015
4.  Do you have any studio rituals?  First thing in the morning, I retreat to my home studio with a cup of tea to write my Morning Pages.  I fill three notebook pages with stream of thought writing and stop at the end of the third page.  Then, I put it away and get on with my day.

5.  Who has inspired you on your artistic journey? Billings, Montana is home to some very impressive art quilters - Barbara Olson, Laura Cater-Woods, Brooke Atherton, John Flynn, Laura Heine, and Cheryl Wittmayer are all nationally known for their work in the quilting/art quiltng world, and they are all right here!  Amazing!
6.  What are the 5 essential things in your studio that you cannot live without? Thermofax machine, block printing supplies, white fabric for surface design, home sewing machine, and fabric paints.

7.  What is on your design table right now?   My design table is covered with blueprints for a landscaping redesign at a commercial building I own and operate.  I don't spend much time in the studio during the short months of summer in Montana.  I have a few pieces ready for machine quilting and I will work on those periodically as time permits.   

8.  How do you juggle your artistic life, family, friends, etc?   With my studio located right in my home, family life and creative life are fully integrated.  Most of my friends are not art friends, so time with them provides a good respite from all the pressures of work and family.

9.  Do you have any studio companions (human or otherwise)?  Studio time is solitary time for me.

10.  What was the biggest challenge in creating your piece for Reflections?  I needed to create special tree images for the Thermofax screens, much taller than the ones I had in my collection, that pushed the limits of my Thermofax machine.

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