The success of my little Frida Khalo design in the states has been incredible.With over 8K likes on FB the image has been liked and shared and sales have earned me a GOLD designer award with the company VIDA whom I have collaborated with.I decided that it may be of interest for some of you into why I chose her image for my design and into the process of the art making behind the design.
Firstly to understand about my work you first need to know a bit about me. I have been a contracted service provider using my skill with art to mentor prisoners since 2010. In 2012 I won the Arts Access Aotearoa's Prison Leadership award for my services during the Christchurch Earthquakes using art to help Prisoners give back to their communities by curating two prison art auctions. I have also used my skill in art therapy in Vietnam with victims of human trafficking in 2015 with an organization called Hagar New Zealand and Hagar Vietnam. I use art as a tool to empower those suffering from adversity on a national and international level and have begun collaborating with a company VIDA from USA, combing my design with textiles. VIDA supports and provides literacy programs for their factory workers from a percentage of sales of every garment sold.
The inspiration behind my design Frida (Pink Lady) is through my belief in Art being used as a tool for self expression and Frida Khalo's own personal paintings are a brilliant example of how art can be used to express emotional hardship, suffering and pain. Often through self expression comes a better understanding of ones-self and a sense of purpose and of hope. It is also my philosophy and arts practice to provide "Arts for All" enabling art to be brought into the lives of those who may not necessarily have access to the arts including disability, mental health, incarceration in a correctional setting or for victims of extreme human rights abuse or environmental disasters and war.
Frida Khalo (Pink Lady) was created by hand cutting with a stencil blade an image of Frida that I had drawn. I used pink acrylic liquid ink in a spray bottle to spray her image and then lifted the stencil off. The smaller finer detail in her necklace and earings I painted with a small brush with metallic gold acrylic paint and outlined with very fine black. The gold leaf background was some scrap wrapping paper. I often use old wallpaper, scrap paper, newspaper or old curtains as backgrounds. In my line of work as an art tutor within a correctional environment and when working with extreme poverty not only are there limitations with the physical environment when creating art (i.e often no water, tables etc) but I have to also be resourceful and re-use as much as I can from my surroundings with regards to materials. This often reflects in my own art practice.
Thank you so much to everyone who has supported my work. I am truly humbled. Click the below links for more informaiton