I wanted to start off the KLT Art "Artist Showcase" with one my the sweetest artists I've encountered on social media. Alicia Walker is the head artist of Art by AmW and creates beautiful artwork. Check out her interview, get to know her and support this great artist!
1. Introduce Yourself!
My name is Alicia M. Walter. I’m 37 years old although some of my family insists that I still look 21. I was born and raised in Springfield, Massachusetts and currently reside in Rochester, NY. Anytime I mention NY to someone, they assume NYC. No, I live almost at the top of the state and just 1.5 hours from Canada. I am a full time wife and the sole artist behind my brand, Art by AmW which was established in 2011.
2. How long have you been creating art and what type of work do you make?
Since I was very young I have always been exposed to the arts in some form. My mother, Grace, and my late grandmother, Virginia, always had me involved in some form of art. This included but was not limited to day camps in the summer, dance school (jazz-tap-ballet), etc. As I hit the teenage years, family members would contact me to create for them. When asked what type of work do I create, I inhale and then run off the list *laughs*. I originally began working with acrylic paint on canvas and occasional oil paints, but then I adventured off to creating jewelry, hand painted purses, wine glasses, t-shirts, and graphic illustrations. Everything is a canvas to a artist!
3. How did you learn to create art?
I believe that my talents were gifted to me by Our Creator. I’m a self-taught artist and had little training in high school, basic drawing in college as well as graphic design courses. But I have no official degree in the arts.
4. What's the most difficult thing about being an artist? What's the most rewarding?
Back in 2001 when I gave being a full-time artist a try, I battled with not knowing what to create. I had one great painting emerge from me that year, which is entitled, My Africa. I painted the continent of Africa with a beautiful sunset and grassland. But when you turn it upside down, within it you will see a mother holding her child. That blew my mind and then, that was the end of it. I questioned what do I paint next, what direction do I go in. I was so stressed that later that year I walked away from it all. It wasn't until 2011 with the love and support of family and friends that I was encourage to pursue being an artist again. I had to learn to feel more and think less; letting the paintbrush guide me. That was the difficulty I experienced and now, I create for me. I do it because it makes me happy. And when I share or create for others, putting my heart on canvas and sharing that joy with them is rewarding. We may think that it's about us but you never know what you are doing for someone else. Just the other day, my art was gifted to a family member. It arrived to the recipient at a very trying time for them, and brought some ease to their situation.
5. What makes your art stand out from other people's art?
My style of art is not simply viewed with the eye but also viewed and felt by the heart. My brush strokes can be felt. I don't like my work to be "perfect". I like those imperfections. My work has it's own style.
6. What inspires you to create?
Inspiration for me comes all over. I mostly create from what God inspires me to do, but I also get inspiration from nature, photography, current events, music, emotions.
7. What's your favorite piece you've made so far and why?
Every time I create something, it becomes my new favorite piece. I can not just name one so I will say all of my paintings are my favorite.
8. What does being "creative" mean to you?
My company moto is,"Exposing you to beautiful art, one canvas at a time. Being creative is expressing oneself through their choice of art. It's revealing ideas and concepts in a artistic way.
9. Where do you want to take your artwork in the future?
This journey has already been an amazing one for me and a very humbling one. I didn't see things becoming what they are today. I have supporters not only in the US, but abroad. That in itself is a great accomplishment. No one knows what their future holds for them. I'd like for my art to be bring joy in everyone's home, businesses, in museums, etc. so that my memory lives on. My art is emotion. I want people to be happy.
10. What advice do you give to aspiring artists?
To aspiring artists, one must first believe in themselves before others will believe in you. Remove the doubt and everything will fall into place. Create everyday to perfect your craft and own it!
Thanks a lot, Alicia!