The Artist as Mystic

The Artist as Mystic

I’ve taken more time for painting the past months than before. Painting more has been a dream I’ve had over 20 years, but it has never become a steady practice. I draw and paint (mostly digitally) a lot of course, as part of illustration work. But now I’m talking about my own personal, artistic practice.

For a long time I felt like I didn’t have enough of something.. a message? time? a style? courage? Something was blocking me from really finding my own expression. Technically I have been able to draw and paint “perfectly” since I was about 19 years old. The thing that was lacking was something else.

Of course making money is an issue, since living as a visual artist in Finland is not very easy. Most artists earn money other ways than creating art. That’s just the reality.

But I can feel that some of the blockage is gone now. I feel a completely new kind of confidence in what I’m doing. I have also changed my life quite drastically the past 6-12 months, and perhaps this has something to do with it. Part of the changes have to do with developing better practices when it comes to how I take care of my body and mind. I’ve always felt a pull towards the mysticism that can be found in artistic expression, but now I am ready to surrender to it completely ā€“ for the sake of fulfilling my purpose in life, which is to connect to others through art.

So I have written a new artist statement, concerning my personal artistic work:

I choose the content of my paintings intuitively. The flowers, plants, bodies, hair and so on are all connected to events and emotions in my personal life. Images come to me in dreams and meditation and often have symbolic meaning to me. Every painting contains some of my lived experience. I have surrendered to the mysticism of this process, even though Iā€™m otherwise a skeptic and proponent of scientific thinking. However, the purpose of art and science is the same: to understand the true nature of reality. I find much greater freedom to pursue truth in art, even though it is counterintuitive to do it through mysticism. And even though my paintings might seem just decoratively pretty, my aim is to create a kind of meditation. The artworks are meditations. The state I am in when I paint is meditative, and I hope that anyone who lays their eyes on the paintings will feel an urge to become still, observe and listen to themselves. I hope the paintings can connect us in some way, and bring a sense of oneness with the world.

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Status change

Well, from today onwards I’m a freelancer. Or perhaps it sounds better to just say writer and illustrator – or why not artist.

I’ll be mostly working on my second SF-book in January, and taking on a few illustration projects. I’ll also be writing film and theater reviews and planning a podcast. So spring is packed with awesome work.

It’s an amazing feeling to be able to finally work full time with writing fiction and making art. And I’m happy to discuss any work commissions or suggestions for collaboration (in that case send an email to jennykwiik [at] gmail.com).

Happy new creative year 2014!

Prosite up and running

I recently upgraded my Behance profile to Prosite (since this is free for Adobe Creative Cloud members). So this is what my site looks like there. It’s still quite simple, and I haven’t published that many projects on Behance yet. But hopefully I can start filling it up with more projects soon. I’ll soon work on an illustration for a science fiction short story, and I’ll upload it to Behance when it’s finished in June. But since thesis writing is my main focus this year, new illustrations are born very sporadically. I’d really like to post more drawings and works in progress on Behance, but that will have to wait till 2014, when I’m a freelancer again.

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New web pages: Society6 and Tumblr

New web pages: Society6 and Tumblr

Some news! I started a Society6 shop just before the new year. Currently I have four illustrations there for sale:

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I’m very excited about it! Even though I have no idea if anything will sell. But at least it’s out there (and I might buy something for myself and as gifts for friends anyway).

I’ve stopped using Instagram because of the changes they’ve made in terms, and am focusing on using my Flickr-account more actively instead. But since I just loooove the web, I couldn’t just stop using one service without trying on a new one (yes, I know that sounds very healthy). So I’m now also on Tumblr (kolofont), and so far I’m loving it! I post and reblog images mostly, but sometimes with a little comment. I actually miss blogging in English, but as this is more of a personal web page for me, I’m going to use Tumblr as an English language blog. So if you’re on Tumblr, please follow me! I’m looking for more cool people to follow there…

This blog

The reason I’m starting this blog is that MobileMe is turning into iCloud, so my old web page is going to disappear (because I’m not going to jump into the iCloud). As I’m very happy with WordPress blogs, I’m staying here. I mostly blog in Swedish at Kolofont, so I will not be updating this blog very often.

But why not take the chance to create something new here?

In the different pages (About, Art, Research) you can find some basic information on what I do. But I’ll also be posting illustrations, photos, thoughts about research and writing in the blog posts; But completely randomly and only as a part of this being a personal web page.

There are a lot of exciting things going on in my life right now. Next year I’ll finish two huge projects I’ve been working on for years (Book 1 and Thesis). And at the same time I want to have time for my family and taking care of myself. I want to have time for reading, dancing, seeing good films, playing games and traveling. I’m a mom, a geek, a thinker, a maker. Welcome to my little space in the web.