Friday, July 24, 2009

Fabulous Friday Feature: ArtbyMarilyn!

Welcome to the next installment of the Fabulous Friday Features, where I feature a different Etsy artist each week! If you know of a great Etsy artist who should be featured (or if you want to be featured yourself!) please leave a comment with a way to contact you (Etsy store, email address, blog site, etc.).

~One of Marilyn's Ads~

Enough of those details, let's get to know our newest artist! This week's artist is a fabulous artist who really defines the term "triumph over adversity". Marilyn of ArtbyMarilyn has had some very frightening ordeals with even more frightening injuries, caused by very serious car accidents. Despite serious, permanent injury (she can't feel most of the fingers in her right hand - her painting hand, and has a serious head injury), she manages to paint the most whimsical, beautiful, captivating art. So inspirational and talented is she, she was even featured on a large news program on 27News! Please read on to learn more about this amazing artist and see some of the delightful (and very affordable) art she creates.

~Marilyn with Two of Her Phenomenal Paintings, Prints of These are Available in Her Etsy Store~

My artwork reflects my life. Therefore, I want to share my story with you to help you better understand my work and my inspirations. My paintings are an exploration of observation and storytelling. Sometimes the inspiration comes quickly and other times if resides in my mind for some time. My inspiration are my feelings with regard to a subject.

~Two More Beautiful Paintings, One of Her Beloved Pastors, and Her Trademark Sunflower (Sunflower is Available in Her Etsy Store)~

Whether I capture the mental image or the digital photograph of a subject, I first sketch the picture and then use oil paint to explore a variety of color contrasts and depth to give substance and meaning to my work. I start with a blank canvas which allows the completed piece to be a reflection of my intelligence, research, hope, values, and trust in myself and God. The end result, is my mind, heart and soul expressing themselves.
~Some of Marilyn's Bookmarks for Sale~

I continue to work on my style that merges personal experience with images of world peace in order to bridge the gaps in humanity to build a stronger foundation built on compassion, inspiration, and faith. My use of variance and relevant subject matter provide an overall sense of peace and empathy between myself and the viewer.
~A Selection of Marilyn's Jewelry Featuring Her Art~

A Budding Artist~ My interest in art began when I was a girl growing up in the Madison, Wisconsin, area. When I was 13 I bought my first camera, an old Brownie. I took it everywhere looking for special moments to capture on film. My dad, August Meier, would often surprise me by laminating some of my pictures. It makes me smile when I think about how my dad enjoyed my talent. It helped us form a very special bond. I still carry some of those old pictures with me today. I even have that old Brownie, safely tucked away.
~A Book About Marilyn's Dog, Fritz~

Art Follows Me~ Throughout my life I’ve found many creative ways to express my artistic talents. At one point I worked as an interior designer. It’s still a hobby of mine. I also danced for “Arthur Murray.” I was actually chosen to travel as a dancer but had to turn it down because of my job. I haven’t been able to dance since my accidents but I hope to again soon.
~One of the Squirrels Marilyn Has Made Friends With - Prints are Available Here~

My Parents Influence~ While my father never saw me paint he was the reason I first picked up a brush. My dad died in 1965 when I was 20. To help get past the grief I decided to paint a portrait of him. I poured all my feelings into that painting as a form of therapy. The joy on the faces of those who saw it gave me the encouragement to continue painting.

An Artist’s Suffering~ Like many artists I’ve dealt with a lot of suffering in my life. My sweet daughter, Robin Lyn, passed away when she was just 4 months old. I had a difficult time moving on after her death until I found The Compassionate Friends, a support group for grieving parents. There will always be a very special place in my heart for Robin Lyn. My step-son, Christopher Thomas, was taken from me when he was just 8 years old and I’ve been searching for him ever since. I miss Christopher and hope to see him again someday.~A Postcard~

In 1993 I fell and tore my rotator cuff. I was reduced to 25% use of my dominant right hand and needed several operations. In 2001, a truck rear-ended my car, severely injuring my hand and foot. Six years later I was involved in another crash. This time a semi hit my car leaving me with a brain injury and more injuries to my back, hand, and hip. I am now stricken with severe head pains, I have two numb fingers on my right hand, and electric shocks jolt up my hand and shoulder. I can only paint for short periods at a time because of the pain. Luckily, I found a wonderful chiropractor, Dr. Inda. He adjusts my fingers each week so I can paint. Doctors say I’ll be disabled the rest of my life but I refuse to believe that. I hope to someday regain the use of my hand, arm, and shoulder and put an end to my head pain.~A Sneak Peek at a Collage in the Works~

Special Thanks to Family & Friends~ I’ve survived a lot of hardship but in the midst of my sorrows the Lord has also provided me with tremendous blessings. Many people have provided me with great support and encouragement throughout the years. (Please visit her site HERE to see the many people she thanks for their support)

~Another Beautiful Painting~

A Final Thought~ I pray my art will continue to be an outlet for my happy, positive feelings. I know that I am very blessed and my greatest hope is that you will find beauty in my work. May they bring smiles to your faces and lift your hearts.
Have a beautiful life,
Isn't she wonderful??? I hope you go and visit her shop and give her some love.

Until tomorrow, time is running out!! Sign up for my newsletter to try and win a pair of magnificent earrings from my NeoAmour Marie Antoinette collection (You have to sign up for the newsletter first to be eligible to win!!), see the full contest details here.

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