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Shelly Bedsaul

Artist's Interview

How long have you been creating?
I think it began when I ate a tube of my mother's prussian blue oil paint. You could say it's in my blood. Dad said I started, while still in the crib, as a muralist using "found materials". Mom introduced me to sketchbooks as opposed to coloring books or....walls. The creative bug has always been there. Growing up in Northern California in the 60's, I discovered the concert posters of the Avalon and Fillmore. I tried in vain to duplicate the style. Never did, but found my own niche. Dad would get frustrated with my subject matter. "Why don't you draw something real?" Like what? "I dunno! Draw the garbage can!" I did. It was the first thing I ever sold. I've since, spent the next 40 years living nothing close to a normal life. Often frustrating, often rewarding, always poor. Wouldn't trade it for the world.
What, besides your art, brings you creative fulfillment?
Humor and writting. I love wordplay. I love to make people laugh or at least chuckle. Recently, I've been developing a couple of children's books. I have the stories completed, just need to finish the illustrations. A mad genius friend of mine, convinced me to participate in an improvisational comedy video project. It was fun. That led me to create Helga Hoggenthaler, Domestic Diva. You can see her beginnings on my Cafepress store. She's also a blogger, a spokes woman for our times and mentor for our struggles toward perfection.
What are your motivations for creating?
Insanity! I refuse to take medication for it. I cultivate it. Lately, in view of all our gloom and doom news, I find myself creating silly, sentimental stuff. In general, my work is illustrative. Even the abstracts are an instant poloroid of mood. Mood can take you to the depths of depression to the epiphany of spirit. In between is an occassional smile and joy in the everyday. Life motivates me. Music motivates me and always, the human condition. It has to be recorded and in the process, reach a moment of understanding.
How do you know when a piece you have been working on is done?
It's finished the moment it forms in my head. The rest is technical.
What do you find stimulating right now? How does this influence your creative process?
Quantum physics. It began as an experiment in my learning curve. I was abysmal in math. I had a theory. It was due to hormonal overload. Children should be taught math when they're 30. Now that I'm to the age where I no longer have hormones, I started reading about quantum theory to see if I could get a grasp. It's really neat. It reads like zen questions. It has really kewl names like the "uncertainty principle". I don't know that I truly grasp it, but it did lead to a breakthrough in my abstracts.
What brought you to EBSQ?
Having worked in the gallery industry for twenty five years, I noticed a slowing of patronage. This is due, one, a blatant violation of trust by limited edition print publishers, two, customers getting bored with the same tired offerings, year after year of genre painting. "Investment art" is no longer the impetus for purchase. I'd been looking at Ebay and kept seeing the EBSQ logos. I checked it out, liked what I saw and I'm here. It's been a great tool in promoting my work and a great support community.
What are some of your artistic goals for the future?
My goals for 2009....well, I'd like to pay my rent, utilities and maybe buy a little food. Fame was never a goal, just a means to accomplish the previous. I'd also like to see my little neighborhood develop into a working arts community. The coasts are rediculously expensive. I live in an 1860's commercial builiding, a fairly large studio downstairs and a 1 bedroom apartment upstairs. I pay $350 a month. Since what I do is mostly on the net, location is not important. I'm living the 1900's Moulin Rouge dream, complete with drafts and the toothless. Not pretty, but what was Santa Fe before Georgia O'Keeffe.
What would you like your fellow EBSQ artists and collectors to know about you and or your work?
Although, I inject humor in just about everything, I'm very serious about what I do. Whatever I learn, I'm happy to share even, though my brother sometimes thinks it makes me sound like a know-it-all. I paint. It's what I do. It's a compulsion and whether anyone likes it or not, I'll do it till I die. Other than that, I'm harmless and can "pass" for normal.

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