Today we’d like to introduce you to Jennifer Love Gironda.
Jennifer, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I guess what might make me stand out is that I have made a piece of art every day since January 2012- so as of today (August 26, 2018) that is 2429 pieces of artwork.
Here is how that all started. I’ve always loved art, ever since I was little. Back home in North Carolina I used to carry around an old butter container full of crayons wherever I went, I loved to draw and color. Art was always my favorite subject in school. I was inspired by my amazing high school art teacher, Robin Calcutt, to go into teaching and I went on to earn my BFA and MAEd degrees in Art Education and Textiles from East Carolina University. I went into teaching and I loved it- still do. But something was missing.
That something was my art. I wasn’t producing work. I mean, I would make some things here and there- but not much. I attended a workshop through the Surface Design Association in Minneapolis and came back ready to create- so I did, I spent that summer working on a series of large tree drawings, and that fall continued to draw and paint. That January I wanted to make even more and I found an on-line challenge, www.creativeeveryday.com – and that was my starting point.
At first I went by the themes on the web-site, but I soon found that I wanted to do my own thing, so I started to pick my own monthly themes. My format since I began this whole commitment is that I complete a piece of work within the monthly theme, allowing myself to explore, make mistakes and most of all have fun. I found that making more work made me want to make even more. In addition to my daily art I create recycled jewelry and paper dresses, fashion illustrations, take on commissions and even do some sewing.
I found that by taking the time to make my own work again that I was even more excited about teaching and it directly impacts my student’s today- they help keep me motivated.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I have had obstacles in the daily art making journey, that is for sure. Time, time, TIME! Time has surely been a struggle. I found a great poster at the Florida Art Education Association Conference years ago, “Don’t FIND time for art, MAKE time for art.” That is basically my mantra. There were times when I was working a second job at the mall, coaching two cheerleading teams and teaching and it would get overwhelming, but I learned to be organized and to plan ahead. If I know I will be traveling I plan my theme ahead and use materials that are good on the go. I maintain a dedicated space to make my art, it started out as a corner of the kitchen and now is a studio at home, but wherever I am I can make work.
My main obstacle now is what to do with all of the work! When I first started I would do paintings on canvas and some mixed media pieces that were more sculptural but after making the daily art for so many years now I stick to works on paper, usually in smaller sizes. I put each month’s work away in large paper folders, and then file them away in plastic bins by years. The bins are taller than me now!
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Jennifer Love Gironda Art, Lake Worth Community High School Art Teacher and Art Hive Magazine Contributor and Brand Ambassador – what should we know?
I show and sale my work. Due to the volume of work folks usually contact me directly to inquire about purchasing work or to discuss commissions.
I think the thing that I am most proud of is my dedication to making work. No matter what- I make my daily art.
My work is colorful, whimsical and often inspired by fashion. I feel like it reflects who I am as a person.
Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
I think my love of art is infused in everything in my life- and that makes me feel like I have achieved some level of success. I love making art- so my daily commitment to making my own work motivates me. I have a passion for teaching and I am inspired every day by my high school students. I seek others that share my love for art, from my work with Art Hive Magazine to spending time and supporting my artist friends- I feel like my whole life revolves around art and I love it.
And I gotta tell you, having a supportive spouse sure helps, too! My husband is my number one fan, my biggest critic and my rock.
- Website: www.jenniferlovegironda.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org