- GUEST ARTIST -
Today, I interview an inspiring artist from Canada.
Welcome, Tara ...
1. TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR ARTISTIC JOURNEY.
My name is Tara Vahab, I was born in Iran and raised in different countries. I started practicing visual arts professionally since childhood. Although I find my interest in various forms of art and languages, I received my BFA from University Of Calgary in 2015.
2. WERE YOU GOOD AT DRAWING AS A KID?
I actually struggled a bit with drawing as a kid but loved colours and making objects, mostly crafts, anything from paper flowers to stuffed toys, pottery, painting and baking. As a kid I could spend an entire day working on my little creative projects.
3. WHEN AND HOW DID YOU BECOME AN ARTIST?
My parents found out about my interest and talent and decided to provide me with professional practice in visual arts when I was about 8-9 years old. Since then I do not remember a time in my life that I completely stopped making art.
4. WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT BEING AN ARTIST?
The fact that I can keep up with a routine of making art but always making something new and also being an artist gives me the freedom I crave for exploration, never ending research and expression.
5. WHAT IS THE HARDEST THING ABOUT BEING AN ARTIST?
Having faith in my art and my mission as an artist when nobody else does, in other words, sometimes being my own army, my own team, my own fan, my own admirer and even my own muse!
6. DO YOU WORK FOR YOURSELF, OTHERS OR BOTH?
I am working for myself as an artist and founder of LOUD Art Society, a humanitarian organization that helps to enhance health through art and creativity. Also, I am teaching Creative Acrylic Painting and En Plein Air Painting at the continue education of University of Calgary
7. WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT?
Although once we achieve anything great, it no longer feels that great. However, I consider my humanitarian work, leaving a legacy through my art and being able to heal individuals with my art program as a greatest achievement for me.
8. WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON AT THE MOMENT?
Currently I am working on several projects: woven newspaper art project that I started years ago, a doodling project on my social media and documentation of my findings for my upcoming book “Self-Therapy through Art & Creativity” a guide to higher emotional intelligence.
9. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE MEDIUM?
Acrylic and oil paint. Any non-traditional medium that inspires me such as newspaper.
10. WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
Mysticism and human mind
11. WHAT DO YOU PREFER TO PAINT OR ILLUSTRATE?
12. DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR EMERGING ARTISTS?
Keep producing more art even if you don’t think you are making good art because:
- Practice will make it perfect, your work will eventually improve within its authenticity
- Create a collection of your own works, eventually volume and quantity will speak much louder than quality
- Quality of your work is your style and brand. Accept is for what it is or improve it for what you want it to be
13. DO YOU SUFFER FROM ARTIST’S BLOCK?
When I am burned out or I just received a rejection for my proposal, yes! But even then, I am refuging to art, I just need to change my activities. In fact, I have made a video on how to get access to the creative flow.
14. DO YOU HAVE A PREFERRED SCHEDULE?
It depends to the project that I am working on. Sometimes, I need the daylight and sometimes I prefer the silence of the night.
15. DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE PLACE TO WORK?
When the weather cooperates, I love creating in the nature.
16. WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST JOY IN YOUR WORK?
Colours, shapes and forms. The joy of making, the process itself, reflecting and every time learning something new. I also really enjoy sharing my joy through collaborative creations.
17. WHO IS YOUR FAVOURITE ARTIST / ILLUSTRATOR AND WHY?
Oh, there are so many of them: Leonardo Da-Vinci for his timeless wisdom and mysteries in his creations, Frida Kahlo for transferring her pain flawlessly onto the canvas, Alex Grey for his complex and colourful metaphysical illustrations and paintings, Marina Abramovic for masterfully transferring her mental power through her performances.
18. WHAT’S THE GREATEST COMPLIMENT YOU EVER RECEIVED?
“How did you do this???”
19. WHAT WAS THE WORST COMMENT YOU EVER RECEIVED?
“Nobody will need this work!”
20. WRITERS ARE SOMETIMES INFLUENCED BY THINGS THAT HAPPEN IN THEIR OWN LIVES. ARE YOU?
Art is often an outlet for our emotions so yes, I also sometimes am influenced by what happened in my life and that is what I find therapeutic but most of the times I see my art as discovering a new knowledge I need to learn about and present.
21. HAVE YOU WON ANY PRIZES OR AWARDS?
I have received numerous awards the highlight of which is receiving a scholarship to study and exhibit at the State of Hermitage Museum in Russia and receiving individual artist grant from Calgary Arts Development
22. WHAT DID THEY MEAN TO YOU?
I have been making art for almost as long as I remember and until not too long ago I was still very doubtful about whether I am an artist or maybe I should chose a carrier that challenges me more until I realized being an artist is perhaps one of the most challenging carriers to have. Receiving awards is a confirmation that I am an artist and a motivation to keep making more art.
23. OTHER THAN DRAWING, WHAT ELSE DO YOU LOVE?
Sculpting, making installations and painting murals
24. WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO ALL WORLD LEADERS IF YOU HAD THE OPPORTUNITY?
Please support giving public an easier and more affordable access to practicing art and creative activities. We cannot solve the world’s mental health crisis that we are facing with just medications and counselling.
25. DESCRIBE YOUR PERFECT DAY.
Waking up early, work out, meditate, have a colourful breakfast while making some notes in my journal, start my work either on computer or on a project without getting interrupted! Have a colourful lunch and continuing my work, share my work on my social media and continue my work.
26. WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?
Aside from making more art and increasing my online presence, I am also working on my vision of creating spaces for people of all walks of life to practice any form of art for enhancing mental and emotional health.
27. HOW DO YOU PROMOTE YOURSELF?
Mainly through social media and networking.
28. WHAT HAS BEEN MOST THE MOST SUCCESSFUL PROMOTION?
Social Media, particularly making tutorial videos or videos of myself and my works
29. DO YOU MENTOR OTHERS?
30. DO YOU HAVE A MENTOR?
Mostly informal mentors. As a visionary artist, I consider constantly educating myself as a mentorship.
Clancy's comment: Well done, Tara. You are gifted.