Friday, February 19, 2010

pixie campbell : artists who blog

Pixie's blog: pink coyote
Pixie's website:
Pixie's shop:

Why did you decide to start a blog?

It was two months before my son was born in 2005, and I'd left my job behind to prepare for his arrival. The stories were starting to bubble up and I received enough encouragement from a blogging friend to take what felt like a leap at the time. Sharing myself virtually was something I wanted to do but had to learn how. I wanted to talk about motherhood and birth and share pictures of what I saw everyday, to add it to the pool of what was a small, energetic community at the time.

How did you come up with the name of your blog?

I felt like I was learning all of my lessons the accidental way, the long way around. This is what Coyote teaches: humorous foolishness which occasionally results in chance victory. Pink gave it a playful twist and reminded me to keep the content fun and from my heart.

How has blogging affected your work as an artist/designer?

Very much! I don't know that I'd even be a working artist if I hadn't jumped into the swirl of brilliant blogging creatives and then asked myself the crazy question of where I fit in to all of it. While I've always been creative, I'd never been surrounded by artists and inspiration as when I began adding my two cents to the communal cauldron.

I recall the feeling of arriving at a potluck, to which I needed to bring my favorite colorful dish. In the beginning, it was my words and vulnerabilities, and later, some visual art. The ongoing conversation of blogging prompts me to dig for words and pictures that demonstrate what holds meaning in my little world. Also, I enjoy sharing the dailiness of my work and life on a personal level.

What are your favorite artist/designer blogs? Why?

I love The Handmade Artist for their rustic prettiness, and Mustard and Sage for the romantic quality of her picks. There are squillions of beautiful ones!

I love to read the softhearted images and words of Imagine and Create's Annie Patterson.
I religiously escape into the brilliant sarcasm of Kirstin Cram of Tollipop.
I can't live without Anne Wood's beautiful animals and ships.
I adore the wordy inspiration at Artsyville.

With artists who blog, I find it so fun when the artist's personality is accessible and I love their work even more when I know a bit about their process and what the meaning of the work is for them.

Do you have any advice for artists/designers who are starting a blog?

Stay relevant to your message and post thoughtfully + often. Create interest in your blog by jumping into the conversation. At this point, with blogs being so abundant and distinctive about content, it's very easy to find the people with whom you really resonate with and forge connections.

What has been the most positive and inspirational aspect of having a blog for you?

The most positive aspect is that I feel at home there. It's become a place where I can share my struggles and triumphs as candidly as I choose. Most inspiring of all is that I have made and deepened friendships that I may have never discovered. It's a four and a half year chronicle of my journey as an artist and a mama and I really cherish the medium for that.

What do you find the most difficult/most rewarding part of having a creative profession?

Most difficult is balancing it with the needs and unbridled, joyful howls of my children. When I really want to have a Calgon moment at home, I retreat into my work shamelessly, if only in my mind. When all gongs of demand are ringing at once, art complains the least about how good a job I'm doing! The things I struggle with, however, are often what inspire the content of my work. The most rewarding part is that this is my dream job. The job I thought would be impossible to have! I hope it's only the housework that has suffered since I've begun working as an artist.

Other than your blog, what has been the most effective way for you to promote your art/design?

Etsy has been wonderful for me. It's been a simple solution for displaying my catalog of work in an accessible format, plus I can connect and sell my work at the same time. I still drop cards in galleries because I love to meet and connect with people one-on-one.

How do you maintain a healthy work/life balance?

This is my life's mission. I tend to under nurture myself, and working from home exaggerates that tendency for me. I keep a list on the refrigerator of what I need daily in order to survive, anything over and above that is sweet icing on the cake. With an eleven month old and a four year old, I am herding all day long. I work at night, don't sleep enough, and have to look at a list to take my vitamins. For me, an artful life, with my family and in my studio, makes all of the messy inconvenient bits tolerable.

What would you like to accomplish in 2010?

My main goal for 2010 is to relocate my family to a city that will inspire our imaginations, and also do a little writing, some weekend retreating, a lot of painting, and become much better at self-care. I'd love to do some more group shows, too- connecting with other artists is the most fun of all.

Thank you for sharing with us today Pixie!

*Photos of Pixie by Thea Coughlin

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