Agnes McLaughlin: my life as a creative and art enthusiast.
I feel very privileged and excited to be given the opportunity to share my journey as “a creative”. It took me a while to write the text as I still prefer to be in my mini studio rather than in front of my computer… (I am sure lots of artists do!)
My art space.
To start, my actual art space or “art cupboard” is minimal with less that 3 square meters of surface area. It is a small room attached to the house which used to be a barbecue space and has been transformed into a beautiful, recently re-painted room with tiles.
As a creative you can function in any small environment; I very often travel being a Franco/British artist, and I still manage to paint on a kitchen table using minimal art supplies!
Memories of a creative life in France.
If I had to describe my life as a creative, I would start from childhood in France when I became fascinated by all things artistic, namely picture books with lovely illustrations and homemade toys. (using cardboard and sundries)
I enjoyed art classes at school, and I remember a bittersweet story about my art contribution to the college I attended in France: I had made a beautiful hand painted silk scarf which was very much praised at the time and chosen to be on show during an open house event. Sadly, it was stolen….
Now I go forward in time when I was living in England, married with two young boys at home and with a wonderful and supportive husband. Painting and watercolour became my staples during that period.
I had the great chance and privilege to attend art classes with different teachers and among them one who became a famous artist in the UK who inspired me to paint with collage and mixed media.
Agnes McLaughlin: a published artist.
Then I became a very prolific artist with collage and I was published twice in a specialised book in France “L’art du collage au XXI siecle”. Moreover, several of my watercolours were featured in books published by the Hangar which is an international art centre near Grasse.
Moving back to the South of France, I painted and glued happily on canvas and participated in group exhibitions in places like Paris, Monaco, St Laurent du Var, Menton, and Valbonne where I had a solo exhibition.
My art work was always representational and varied in themes: characters, portraits, landscapes, urban sketching, still life. I also started to make art bags with painted canvas which went for sale in various craft shows in my area.
In 2016 I was a featured guest artist with a focus on my watercolours on another website, Doodlewash.
A challenging situation presents a new creative outlet.
This January, I started to make art dolls out of necessity.
Due to a major water leak, our house had to be refurbished with a new roof and rendering. As a result, for 2 months we were living among scaffoldings and my art cupboard was inaccessible. So being a creative I had to do something to keep sane…
Once again, my sewing machine became the centre of attention after that period of making art bags 10 years ago…
I bought books on how to make art dolls and I binge watched many tutorials by brilliant artists on Youtube.
Words of advice for creatives.
To conclude, I would recommend any artist to follow their heart rather than their head. Indeed, much has been published about finding our signature as an artist and keeping to a certain style in order to be recognised.
For me what is essential is to be passionate about what you do and what makes you happy and fulfilled.
Do not be afraid to do something totally different and new, even if it is out of your comfort zone. Learn from your mistakes, follow your artistic muse … be creative!
To follow my artistic journey, visit my blog.
To view other artists who have been featured on my website in the last 3 years, please visit the Guest Artist page.
I am grateful for all the talented, productive artists and creatives from all over the world (photographer, author...) who have appeared on Louise's ARTiculations.
If you are a creative and would like to be featured in this space, please contact me. This feature will continue this year as my goal is to share the wonderful work of all types of creatives.
I do not charge a fee to showcase your creative work!
Many featured guests remain in my circle of friends on social media sites, and some, I have even met in person.