Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Angella Dee deJager

Hello, I'm running a little late today so am going to get straight into our Tell All Tuesday, before it becomes Tell All Wednesday ;) whatever time it is where you are reading it it is a good 'un so please enjoy...

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are.
I would describe myself as a mixed-media artist. I love almost all art mediums and can never stick to just one medium or one technique. I love learning and trying out new techniques all the time. I have been passionate about art and all kinds of crafts since I can remember. As a child I drove my grandmother and mom to distraction – always wanting “just a little bit of wool” or “just a little bit of fabric” or “ just a little bit of this or that” to try out a new idea that I had come up with. I am a very creative person - I’m just not happy unless I am making something or decorating something. 

What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
The biggest challenge I face personally and as an artist is that I suffer from Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia and have done for the last 16 years. This is very frustrating because I have very very limited energy and would like to spend that energy doing what I love – art – but sometimes life intervenes and we have to do other necessary things. I also take care of my 71 year old mom , who lives with me, she suffers from Chronic lung disease and is on an oxygen machine. So finding time and energy and pain-free hours to do art is quite a challenge. But the creative drive (force) within me is so strong that sometimes I will lie in bed and draw if I have to. Then I finish the detailed part of the artwork at another time when I am feeling stronger. I feel that art and craft has been my saving grace especially over these past 16 years of illness (& divorce) because it has kept me from becoming depressed and “giving up”. I believe that art is truly the best therapy out there!! My favourite quote has become: “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are” –T. Roosevelt
Have you ever found anything that originally daunted you as an artist that you can now overcame easily?
Another challenge that I have a constant battle with concerning my art is PERFECTIONISM. I have always been a perfectionist and it has held me back in my art to a great degree. It prevents one from just experimenting and having fun with art because you are always under the impression that each and every item you create must be perfect and wonderful. It has taken me SOOOO long to begin getting over this particular problem that sometimes I want to kick myself for all the time I wasted being miserable because my art “wasn’t as good as such and such” or “my style is too na├»ve and simple” or “ I am not the BEST artist out there” ! A book that really helped me with this was Brene Brown’s “The Gifts of Imperfection”. She says: “Creativity, which is the expression of our originality, helps us stay mindful that what we bring to the world is completely ORIGINAL and cannot be compared. And, without comparison, concepts like “ahead” or “behind” or “best” or “worst” lose their meaning.” So I am now on a path to just creating what is in my heart and having FUN with the process and not worrying so much about the outcome. And its’ WONDERFUL!
What messages do you try to portray in your work and do you feel you achieve it?
The messages that I try to portray in my art are Purity, Goodness, Wholesomeness and Simple Beauty. Because I believe that the modern world is severely lacking in these qualities. I also like to incorporate words and quotes into my artworks quite often, because I feel that, more than ever, people need encouragement in these days.
Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
At the moment I sell my art privately – mostly to family and friends. I hope to start selling my art via internet in the near future. You can view my art and all the other crafty things I get up to at my blog: angelladeedesigns.blogspot.com

Thanks so much for your share Angella, personally I think the points you made especially in your last answer are totally spot on & I think many people can relate to your own story with art too because I don't think I've ever spoken with another artist who does not consider it their therapy for dealing with troubles in their own life, nor had to battle with their perfectionism - but I'm so glad it has not stopped you. It is something I feel passionate about as I did let it stop me until I was mid twenties but the trick, like with so much else, is not to overcome it or expect it to go away, because it won't but to work with it. Thanks again Angella, very insightful interview :)
PS I have to admit I really loved the quotes and references you added to your interview, very nice touch ;)

Would you like to be a featured TAT artist,
click the link on the right for more info =)

4 comments:

  1. Another wonderful interview Jenny. I can imagine the frustration Angella feels at being restricted sometimes due to her ME, because one of my son's lives with it and it limits him so much as to what he can do. (I do hope his doesn't last 16+ years)
    It's amazing how many artists are inherently perfectionists and have to learn to accept that not everything they produce will come up to those expectations. Angella's work is very beautiful. I'm sure an on-line shop would be successful for her. I wish her well :0) Mo x

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  2. Ah, perfectionism...my downfall in many things. It has kept me from doing so much in my life, it's downright staggering.

    Lovely work and awesome interview!

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  3. I have known Angella for a long time, and have always admored her ability and her energy. She is very talented, but is modest about her talent. I am also a crafter, and sometimes I think that my work is not up to standard, but Angella always sees something in my work that I had not realised.
    Angella is an inspiration, who likes to share what she knows or has found out. If she finds a good product, she lets everyone know.
    She had a shop in town, but unfortunately, as happens in small towns, people stop supporting her. She sold a lot of my crafts in her shop, for which I am grateful.
    Keep it up, Angella, you are doing well.

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  4. Angella, your work and your story are truly inspiring...that is perfection right there!

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