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09/05/2010


Art: Wonderful & Necessary • by Allison Strine


I’m a mixed-media artist working with paint, paper, and glitter — I suppose you’d say I’m a collage artist. I’m not one of those people who grew up with a paintbrush in her hand. In fact, my mom used to paint horse brushes — these incredibly detailed farm scenes on the back of a wooden brush — but it never occurred to me to pick up the paintbrush too. Instead, I was busy creating various collages from an early age — some of my earliest memories include ironing wax paper leaves!

When I started making art I was in my forties. My friend Elizabeth gave me some 6-inch-square canvases and I had a blast covering them with paint, paper, and ephemera. Other than a weekend at an art getaway, I’ve never had any professional instruction. I’m just winging it!

A Great Feeling
I’m pretty insecure about the quality of the work I do. When someone bought something and they weren’t related to me — that’s when I knew I wanted that great feeling to continue. I love making stuff, but I always need someone to tell me I’m doing okay!

I’m blessed with an amazing basement studio. Since I now sell my line of collages called LadyBirds to gifty girly galleries all across the country, I need a big space set up where I can create art, pack and ship it, and connect to the wonderful world of women online. So my studio consists of an area for painting, another computer area, an area for soldering, one for making magnets, and one for packing and shipping.

Turning to Art
After turning to chocolate, I tend to turn to art to make myself and others feel better.

When I discovered that my creations really speak to women who are struggling, I felt that my mission to create art was clearer. I’ve received emails and messages telling of women who cried tears of joy, sadness, and even healing upon opening gifts of my collages. That’s the time when I feel most satisfied and joyful about what I do — that’s when I feel the most fulfilled. If my art can bring a powerful emotion to the surface, that’s a deep connection, one I am so honored to have with the viewer.

I mostly do art when I’m happy — I paint once a week with my good friend Elizabeth Beck, one of the most joy-filled souls I know. It’s impossible to be sad when I’m painting with Elizabeth! I was fortunate enough to turn to art during a positive time in my life, so I didn’t “need” to be saved the way I might have needed it earlier in my life. The amount of joy that art has brought to me is incalculable. I’ve been blessed with a whole network of like-minded souls, both online and in person, and at this point in my life, art isn’t just a wonderful part of my life, it’s a necessity.

To learn more about Allison Strine, visit allisonstrine.com.

Comments

Love Allison's work! So glad to see her here. She's got a great sense of color and humor that just makes you smile! I too feel that same fulfillment when I can connect with people and what they're going through with my art. It's quite humbling and I consider it a privilege. It's awesome that Allison takes time to connect with her friend on a weekly basis and create together. SO good for their souls!

Oh wow! I love happy coincidences and was thrilled to see this post on Allison because she's giving away one of her perfectly quirky pendants on my blog this week - http://www.choosingbeauty.com. I am only just getting to know her, but love what I know and know that I love her!

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