Artist Ann Dunbar says that one of her earliest art memories was having her first painting of a horse framed and proudly hung in the kitchen by her parents.
Despite the support from her family, as an adult Ann still lacked confidence as an artist and belief in herself. Though she attended art college, she’d received no training to help her prepare for a professional life as an artist.
So Ann took matters into her own hands and signed up to The Working Artist Masterclass to get herself on the right track.
A lot of artists experience a lack of confidence when considering art as a career and it comes from not having the knowledge. Ann says that without it, artists can feel lost, “There’s a black hole that you feel yourself falling down. But having an inch of light telling you not to give up can really make a difference.”
Through The Working Artist, Crista helped Ann to realise that she shouldn’t give up. Rather than being influenced by what was around her, Ann began concentrating on what was within, “Once YOU feel good about your work others feel it too. They want to be part of it and to go on the journey with you.”
It was Crista’s global knowledge that appealed most to Ann, she also found that Crista expressed herself clearly and hit on the points that were most important. She found value in Crista’s questions about goals and encouragement to reflect on one’s purpose.
The first thing she noticed was an improvement in her ability to grow her network. Crista explained that other artists are your best friends – not competitors, and she stressed the importance of these relationships.
Talking to other artists and finding out what makes them tick made Ann realise that she shouldn’t hide herself away any longer. As a result, she’s grown her community and connected with incredible artists from around the world.
Ann’s advice to others who feel lost is to go out and meet other artists, share your feelings and experiences in order to enrich and inspire one another.
At art college, Ann was encouraged to break the rules in order to discover something new and personal. This gave her permission to experiment.
It took Ann ten years to find her voice and discover the techniques she needed to employ to express it. Combining her knowledge of watercolor and embroidery posed a lot of problems initially and there were points where she thought it would never work, but patience and persistence has paid off!
Ann’s art is not only beautiful but it’s easy to connect with. Viewers say they find it inspirational as it taps past memories and makes them feel uplifted. Ann wants her audience to be a part of each painting she creates, to feel like they can touch it.
Feeling, looking, touching and discovering are the foundations of Ann’s art. When working on a project, Ann will record patterns, textures and form while trying out lots of different combinations, which adds excitement to the pieces.
As for what inspires Ann, she says it’s her audience itself. She’s touched by the way art affects people and enriches their lives. She claims that travel has deeply influenced her art too, introducing new compositions and colors.
Ann has been awarded her 40th art award this year, but she maintains that her biggest accomplishment is the confidence she’s earned to feel comfortable in her own artist’s skin. Coming up next for Ann are exhibitions in Canada, Italy, Versailles, London and Normandy.
Ann’s work is so unique and beautiful. We invite you to visit it at: http://www.anndunbarart.com
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