Monday, June 23, 2014

Artist Interview: Jackie Beeman, Plus Courage and Hearts...

I've got some cool stuff to share with you today, including the art of a very good friend of mine!

First, I'm going to share my Journal 52 (J52) and Documented Life Project (DLP) pieces.

For Journal 52, the prompt was "Courage" and you can read more about that HERE.  This is my page for the prompt:

"Being deeply loved gives you strength, loving deeply gives you courage." -Lao Tzu
"With courage you will dare to take risks, have the strength to be compassionate, and the wisdom to be humble.  Courage is the foundation of integrity." -Mark Twain

I totally enjoyed the quotes for this one...but then again, I love quotes in general. I think the Mark Twain quote about courage being the foundation of integrity hit home for me this week.  It really does take courage to display integrity and to stand up for your personal convictions.  Especially because the world tends to be so disingenuous.  Integrity is doing the right thing, even if it's hard, even when no one is looking.  Integrity is one of the things I constantly work on improving in myself, because it's important to do what YOU personally feel to be right.  

For DLP this past week, the prompt was to "Cover your flap in hearts".  I didn't happen to have a flap on this spread, so I just put a crap-ton of hearts on my spread in general.  And here's what I ended up with:

"Your heart's a mess..."

The line is from a song called "Hearts a Mess" by Gotye:

I really enjoy his music, and I watched this little documentary about how he gets inspiration and the way he puts his music together:

I though it was pretty interesting.  He gathered inspiration for music in a similar way to how I get small thing that connects dots in your head and leads you to an entirely different place.  I thought it was neat that despite the fact that my inspiration leads to visual art and his leads to auditory pieces, the way that we get inspired was very similar...I don't know, it could be my general dorkery is showing...

The lyrics for the song are scribbled throughout the page in red and black pen.

When I listen to the song, I hear the story of a person who guards their heart by shutting it off and someone who wants to be close to that person trying to get them to open up again.  I think it's easy to feel empathy for both sides.  Being hurt makes you want to seal yourself up so you won't be hurt again.  And then, on the opposite side, feeling like you want to connect with a person who has put up these walls and not being able to get to know them on a deeper level...seeing how much they miss out on by being that way.  Because, unfortunately, by shutting out the pain, you shut out the good too.

I can identify with both of those feelings.

She's got her hands on her hips cause she's nagging me.

In recent years, I've put forth a lot of energy to tear down the walls around my heart.  It might get hurt again and again, but in the end, the odds are that there's going to be at least one time when it was worth being vulnerable.  There will be a time when all the sad things you went through get obliterated by the really great thing that comes at last.  That's what I like to believe anyway.

One of the things that keeps my spirits up are my friends in the art community.  I've been lucky to get to know some amazing people, both as artists and as human beings.

I asked a good friend (and FANTASTIC artist), Jackie Beeman (I calls her Jackie, My Honey), to be a part of the blog hop I participated in last Monday.  Jackie is not a fan of the blogging end of things, but she makes such AMAZING art...I really wanted to spread the word of her share her work with as many people as I can!  So, I asked Jackie to do the blog hop and we agreed to do it 'artist interview' style, so from this point forward all the art that you see is Jackie's (The questions are in bold, Jackie's answers are in italics and I will sneak my two cents in the normal font.): 

1. What are you working on right now?  Too much as usual.  I sign up for classes and groups and feel required to keep up, and it's silly.  I am taking Life Book 2014 with Tamara Laporte.  It's a year long class with weekly lessons.  Also, Soul Food which has 2-3 classes per week from January to June.

  Along with free groups, such as the DLP and Journal 52 that offer a prompt once a week, I have been doing art exchanges in groups with Ayala Art.  She did the 29 Faces challenge in May.  Once that was over, she expanded to Faces in the World and other art projects.  I am currently in two teams and we just began journals that will travel internationally.  There are 10 of us in that group! 

 I am in a sketchbook class that officially starts on July 6, but we are already playing and submitting sketches.  There's more, but those are the major ones.  (Holy guacamole!  I don't know how she keeps up...Jackie really is one of the most prolific artists that I know.  I honestly think she must sleep for about 15 minutes a day and that she continues to make art while sleeping!)

2. How does my work differ from others of it's genre?  Good question, but I honestly don't have an answer.  I am an art journal hobbyist, not a painter or professional at art, so I just do what I like to do, the best way I know how!  (I can almost always pick Jackie's art out of the crowd...she's got this amazing style that I can't get enough of!  I don't think I can put my finger on it exactly, but it has something to do with the eyes...the eyes first and then the mouths...her pieces have so much variation, but she still manages to let her style shine through...a skill that I am both very jealous of and very grateful to get to witness!)

3. Why do I create what I do?  Mostly I am taking classes so I create whatever is being taught.  In the case of my free groups, I go with the prompts and create from there.  I have Pinterest and obviously know about YouTube, both of which have lots of inspiration, but I rarely go there because I have so much to keep me busy that I don't need it!  (You read the list for question 1, right?  I literally do not believe there is enough time in the day for her to pack anything else in!  If you know Jackie from Facebook, you'll know she posts new work at least once a day...and seeing how detailed and amazing her art is, I think she's quite possibly found another hour in the day somewhere...)

4. How does my creating process work?  I'd like to give you a complicated formula that would make me sound smart and was easy to follow, but alas, I don't have one.  

I see what the lesson is about or what prompt I will be working on and decide what materials I will use: paints, pencils papers, etc.  Then I gather some things and start playing.

To tell you my dirty little secret, I am a hoarder of craft and art supplies.  I keep things that someday, somehow, can and will be useful in my art!

So I have piles of things all around to pick and choose from.

It's fun to see what others in the group are using or doing.  People are generous with sharing ideas, so that inspires me.

I love to draw late at night.  (For the record, I take that statement as proof that she only sleeps 15 minutes a day...)

On a personal note, Jackie is one of the kindest, most generous, and supportive people I've had the privilege to get to know.

Her work is original, expressive, and endearing.

Jackie's art and her beautiful, encouraging personality never fail to lift my spirits and spur me on in my own creative endeavors.

My personal favorite, but I may be a bit bias... :)

You can find Jackie on Facebook (I know she frequents Journal 52 and Documented Life Project, among others)...I hope that you will go check out more of her art...and please feel free to comment directly to Jackie here on the blog and let her know how fantastic she is!


  1. Sweets, I LOVE the face you painted! You've obviously been watching Jackie very carefully!!! I'm also a HUGE fan of Jackie's work.

  2. Oh, Sweet Tea, as usual, you make me laugh you make me cry, you make me proud of your work.... Artistically and personal! I enjoy your two journal entry's for this week, and your quirky YouTube music finds, that was very cool! I appreciate the invite to be on your blog hop, when I really don't even blog!!! I may be biased also, but that last black and white sketch is my favorite, too, I poured my heart into it! Thanks again for your wit, talent and friendship, I hope it lasts a lifetime!😘 jackie

  3. Sweets, I adore that green eyed beauty. I think it is the black background that makes her pop off the page. LOVELY!

    Jackie, you know how much I adore your art. I love that you are constantly changing. I hadn't seen the first one here with the bird and butterfly, very lovely!!! Hugs to you both, Pamikins!

  4. Amy, you are SO right! Jackie's work is astounding!! So many lovely faces!


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