Featured Artist – Tina Zellmer

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Where do you draw your inspiration from?
When I walk around – I always have my eyes open. Everything fuels my imagination. I devour books, films, music, paintings and illustrations, old photos with stains, dreams, random conversations, flowers, trees, clouds, water puddles, old pieces of paper, old boxes, surfaces that have a texture to them (like a wall falling apart or rusting metal). A painting material (like a new color or a brush) can be very inspiring, too.

What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
That was in kindergarten. I remember that we were all making butterflies by folding a piece of paper in half, sprinkling wax-pencil pieces in between and then ironing them…. beautiful effect – and I loved my self made “painting”.

As a working illustrator, do you still find time to create art for yourself?
Yes, I still find time to create art for myself… and I think it is actually very important for me to also take the time to do so. That way I am able to experiment and find new inspiration for assignments. If there is time between jobs I like to create big paintings – new unexpected things happen and it is really nice for getting a different kind of energy.
What type of transition needs to be made between creating art for yourself and creating art that is commissioned?
When I illustrate for clients, the final visual solution has to communicate to a certain target group. I like the challenge and I get energy and inspiration from it. Of course I have to stay focused and sometimes the deadlines are pretty short, working hours can be long. In my own work I can become lost and go into the illustration or painting. It’s one of my favorite places to go. I can take all the time I want and make images that speak directly to your soul.

What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
Whenever that happens I need to get my mind in a different place. I go outside, take a break and do something else. Eat an ice cream, lay in the sun, do some paperwork or walk my little dog.

If you had to describe your body of work in one word, what would that word be?

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