Today we’d like to introduce you to Amelia Furman.
Amelia, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started my professional art career right out of college with the intention of pursuing children’s book illustrations. I’m a bookworm and storyteller at heart, but I quickly figured out that this career path wasn’t for me and moved toward the fine art approach of galleries, festivals and direct sales of my work to private and corporate clients. This allowed me to create my own stories. But, I had yet to figure out exactly how to express my storytelling heart through visual art. After a five-year journey of finding my “voice,” I landed on mixed media, using collage materials and thin layers of paint to create narrative landscapes. My journey since then has been in finding new landscapes, collage materials and stories to share. Each piece is an opportunity for experimentation and growth.
Currently, I’ve been moving toward collaborative art projects that are based on my techniques and allow participants to place their meaningful mark on a piece of art. We all have the ability to be creative, but often forget this after childhood. My hope is that these collaborative art projects will encourage dormant creativity to awaken in my community… one soul at a time.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
What road? More like uncharted, unknown territory that has very little markings for guidance! It has not been an easy path at all, and there have been many times where I’ve just wanted to throw in the towel. An artist has to be all things: visionary, designer, engineer, creator/producer, marketer, accountant, and administrator. It’s a tough gig, but one I wouldn’t trade for the world.
I think the biggest hurdle for me was realizing that my job as an artist mattered. I had something to offer the world that no one else could, and that was important. Often, artists struggle with their value and purpose. The purpose of art can feel nebulous and at times, non-existent. The benefits of created beauty are often intangible and difficult to measure, but essential, nonetheless.
It wasn’t until God reassured me that He cares about art, designed me to be an artist and in fact called me to the purpose of creating beauty in this world that I was able to resolutely square my shoulders and decide that it didn’t matter how hard the path was or if there even was one… I was doing this and I had God’s blessing. My advice? Keep going. If you feel called to create art, then don’t give up. Find folks who can support your efforts and encourage you along the way. Research and learn. Never stop trying and most of all… adapt.
Please tell us more about your artwork, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
My work is unique in the use of collage materials and paint. The integration of the two mediums is like nothing else people see and I take great pride in that. My work is like a personal journal where nuances and suggestions are whispered throughout the landscapes. One of my favorite things is when collectors email or call me and say they have found something new in their painting… that they have had for ten years.
My work causes people to pause and engage in a scene that they might otherwise overlook. I also feel that my work helps people see the “whole” of a place by indicating activities, people, business, ephemera, and history. I can’t include all the things, but I do think it makes a richer experience.
My love of story is what sets me apart. I love telling my own stories but also helping people express their own, whether that be through collaborative art, commissions or independently created works.
It would be great to hear about any apps, books, podcasts or other resources that you’ve used and would recommend to others.
I have learned a lot of wonderful marketing and sales tips from Cory Huff at The Abundant Artist website. His classes are wonderful and the community of artists taking his classes along with you is such a wonderful resource. I have also benefited from several books: The Dip by Seth Godin, Culture Care by Makoto Fujimura, The Artists Way by Julia Cameron, Create vs Copy by Ken Wystrma, And I know there are more!
I have found the most beneficial resource for me has been other artists. Find some and walk along-side them. Learn from each other and try new things together. It’s invaluable. But there’s another thing… don’t just hang out with artists… find friends of all types. Engineers, stay-at-home moms, teachers, doctors, writers, customer service folks, business owners… they will all help you have a broader vision for your work and their wealth of talent in other areas may come in very handy! Learn from them.
- Original works: 150-1300.00 (approx)
- Fine Art Reproductions: 40-500 (approx)
- Commissioned art for private and corporate clients: prices available upon request.
- Website: www.ameliafurman.com
- Phone: 970.541.4273
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @ameliafurmanmixedmedia
- Facebook: Amelia Furman Mixed Media
Amelia Furman, William Leigh, Emily Fair