ARTIST & CREATIVE INTERVIEW SERIES,
Goddesses, The I AM Program, and her Naturally Rebellious Nature, Australia’s Arna Baartz.
I’m pretty over the moon about this creatives interview series for various reasons. Mainly because it has very little to do with me and very much to do with the intriguing stories of OTHER completely fascinating human beings. It gives me a chance to leave the funky, if not somewhat deep and firework-y depths of my own brain and enter the amazing worlds of others.
As completely fun and entertaining as the last interview with Ross Den Otter was (and believe me his interview was pretty fun.) THIS latest artist continues to uphold the high standards of excellence in creativity. Here’s the speedy Scooby Doo flash back as to how I met Arna Baartz and why I think her work makes my heart flutter.
I met Arna online when I was continuing my quest for amazing creatives to interview. Voila! Ask and you shall receive, Shari. I needed more creative goodness and *The* Universe produced Arna Baartz via a mutual friend and this friend wasn’t kidding. (More on this awesome friend later.) Doodle bugs, Arna’s work is ah-mazing! I checked it out and got giddy. (I know! I know! According to these creative interviews I get giddy a fair amount. But how can I not when I’m coming across so many amazing and talented people?)
Arna’s work is no exception. Beautiful and powerful. Her work is free flowing, loose, lovely and carefree. I admire it for all these qualities, it’s divine exuberance and embodiment of the goddess. *swoon* Scooby Doo flash back to the present So, now that the back story is established and you know all the deets, I’m more than happy to introduce; Arna Baartz. Let’s jump in to the interview …
shari: When did you get your artistic start?
arna: I have been making art forever 🙂 probably since before I was born, but definitely since birth. My father is an artist and mother a writer so we were exposed to all sorts of creativity growing up and given the opportunity to make art in many different ways.
shari: It can be a tough gig so what inspired you to continue following a creative path?
arna: It wasn’t really a choice for me, without art I feel frustrated, I tried other jobs but nothing really made me as happy as art, and so in keeping with my naturally rebellious nature I refused to do anything but art. And parenting of course!
shari: What is your personal philosophy when it comes to art?
arna: I believe we are all artists, as I see the correlation between thinking and creating. We think a thought and it takes its own form and becomes in some way. Creativity is natural to humanity. I believe my art is just an extension of my thoughts and my spirit.
shari: Did you start with painting or did you start with another medium?
arna: I can’t remember but I do know dad used to pin paper all around the walls of our house and let us loose with pots of paint. I also remember painting with mulberry juice!
( Interview continued after the video jump. )
shari: Did you train formally with any art classes or did you take a more organic, non academic approach?
arna: I have diplomas in art and degree’s in other subjects that have interested me over the years but none of these were integral to my artistic process. Art is a feeling thing for me. Skills are good anyone can learn to draw but I definitely don’t believe you need any skills to be able to create true art. You just need desire and excitement.
shari: If you had to pick one what would be your favourite medium? The one you couldn’t live without?
arna: It is an interesting question, art as a whole is what I can’t seem to live without, take one medium away and I would just turn to another one. I most enjoy creating with paint on large canvas, but whenever I am in the middle of any artistic project whether it be drawing, sculpting, poetry, painting…etc that is the one I am loving the best :_)
shari: Tell us about your creative process. Does it differ from medium to medium?
arna: Not really, my creative process is always the same, I start by asking questions and as I make art i receive the answers. I guess if I am creating an artwork for a client I approach it by connecting with them and it becomes about the skill factor and expression for a purpose as well as simple enjoyment and spiritual growth.
shari: Who are your main creative influences?
arna: I love artist like John Olsen and Jackson Pollock, people who let go to the abandon of art, expressive and not too concerned with how the art itself is received by others…
shari: I adore your work, particularly The Goddess of Generosity, You are Blessed and Dancing Goddesses. Can you tell us a bit about them?
arna: These artworks help me to draw out a deeper sense of love for my feminine self, I am learning to release the need to be a certain way to be accepted, I want the beauty of these artworks to remind women that they are gorgeous no matter what the body shape is!
shari: Did you fall into it your personal style or was it developed over time?
arna: I have been developing my self, consciously since I was about 16 and as I transformed areas of my life my art would naturally evolve, I suppose the more art I did the more I worked out what brought me pleasure 🙂 so the style continues to change as I get to know myself more and more.
shari: Tell us how was THE I AM Program BORN?
arna: I was just about to undertake formal midwifery study after the birth of my eighth child when I woke up one morning and started to write and suddenly i was on a roll creating Emotional intelligence resources and workshops for children and communities! I worked for about a year and couldn’t stop I wold venture to say it was channeled stuff! I ended up choosing to dedicate a few years to this creative process instead of studying Midwifery. I guess it stemmed from my own childhood self-esteem issues and then being the mother to so many children, I saw a need, wanted to do something about it so the universe answered my call!
shari: Tell us about your favourite art project to date?
arna: I was commissioned by an amazing client to create three huge 4 metre long artworks, he gave me money to buy the materials and then when I was finished he chose one painting to buy. It skyrocketed my self-worth and my financial value as an artist. I will always be grateful to him for that personal, artistic and financial boost.
shari: Who is the one person (or people) who supported you throughout your journey?
arna: My parents have always been there for me and I have two friends that haven’t wavered. But really my children my ex husbands, my many network connections. social media friends and my clients have all been my solar system.
shari: Tell us a little (or big) something about yourself that no one knows.
arna: I am a pretty open person so most of who I am is already out there 🙂 I can’t think of any big secrets, is that weird? maybe many people don’t know that I was a pretty lonely little kid or that I have lots of cellulite on my legs!! haha I am often very messy but I much prefer order in my home. i don’t use pegs on the washing line because they waste my time. I seem to love animals very much yet I eat them so I am a big hypocrite! I don’t actually believe this whole world is the reality it pretends to be :)) but then everyone probably already knew that
shari: What is your one dream client and why?
arna: Well I would like more of the original client I mentioned before, the benefactor, who sees the art in my heart and wants to do anything they can to make it easy for me to express it.
shari: If you could collaborate with anyone (living or dead) who would it be and why?
arna: I would love to collaborate with Mirka Moira or John Olsen, they are both living (in Australia) and it is THEM that fascinate me as much as their art. Id like to get to know them, to see if I really like them or are they just amazing from a distance!
shari: If you had to pick another career other than the one you have now what would
it be and why?
arna: I’d say it would have to be midwifery, Birth is a great love of mine and it was always on the cusp of my career choice… also I am pretty sure I was a witch burned at the stake which just means i was a wise and powerful woman and midwife… it comes easy to me.
shari: If there was one thing you’d want people to know about you and/or your work what would it be?
arna: It would be that we are all creative and that my work is a result of me choosing to follow a path of love and happiness, doing what I WANT to do and that making that choice wasn’t necessarily easy in that some people objected BUT it paid off, It is bringing me a lifestyle I enjoy and that is full of opportunities for expansion. I am of the philosophy that we can take command of our lives through accepting ourselves and becoming more and more consciously aware. When we do this we feel more satisfied and we really live. My art is imbued with that very healing energy I WANT it to trigger people to feel love and desire and even inspiration to create for themselves a life they can really sink their teeth into.
shari: Is there anything else you’d like us to know? Your next project?
arna: Oh my projects are many! I am always writing and illustrating new books like The Creative Warrior and New Love, making new E I Programs for kids and communities. I am stuck right into a big painting at the moment, exploring evolution and deliberate creation! I am looking to connect more and more deeply with more and more of this wonderful words and all the people in it, social media is an amazing tool!
( Interview continued after the video jump. )
Thanks again Arna for the lovely interview! Anyone wishing to view more of Arna’s work, contact her or follow her can do so through the following websites:
(Click any of the links below to take you to instant Arna.)
In peace, love and art,
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