Spring has finally officially sprung and the daffodils are happily waving hello with all their friendly blooms on display. I now have the absolute pleasure to bring even more beauty to your lives with the lovely work of Jessica Kitzman (seriously great first name!! ;D) her shop ‘The Neon Forest’ is a must see.
Jessica is an artist and art teacher, living in Minneapolis with her wife Kirsty, their son Ronan and dog Tucker. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in photography from the University of Iowa and a MAT in art education from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. She primarily works in paint, stitch and photography, but is always wishing for more free time to explore new media. I certainly can sympathise with that feeling so many fun exciting techniques and never enough hours in the day, now there’s a super power that’d come in handy!
What is your earliest stitching memory?
My mom taught me how to sew, and she was always making us clothes, toys, and costumes growing up. I remember learning to cross stitch as a kid, but most of my projects ended up with snarls and knots at the bottom of the toy box. I didn’t start stitching regularly until after I became a teacher. I had a student my first year teaching who loved embroidery and would use it as a calming strategy. Watching her work was fascinating to me, and when I went home to make my own art after school, I just had to pick up a needle and thread. That was 5 years ago, and the rest is history!
What fires your imagination?
My students! I teach art at Lionsgate Academy, a charter school for middle and high school students on the autism spectrum. There is something about the creative innocence of kids that I just can’t get enough of. Kids who haven’t been trained to make art a certain way, kids that listen to their own creative voice. Those kids are my biggest inspiration. When I get home I’m bursting with creative energy and have to make art! I love inventing patterns, creating unique color schemes, and challenging myself with new art skills. I am a street art junkie and I love artwork that pushes boundaries. I love art that tells a story and art that is unique to the maker. I love to experiment and invent and combine. I learn by doing, and am constantly changing as an artist. When I was graduating from college I met one of my idol photographers, Alec Soth, and I asked him what advice he had for a young artist. He said, “Simple. Stay open.” That has stuck with me and continues to my creative compass of sorts.
Her bold and striking embroidered creations are fantastic, with jewellery like that you’re bound to be showered in compliments. So head on over to her shop and treat yourself to something special.
Jessica Taylor aka Loadofolbobbins is a Textile Artist and Illustrator based by the sea in Portsmouth. At her happiest with a needle and thread, with a passion for genealogy she often explores old photographs in her Textile art. With her fingers in many creative pies she loves to experiment with new techniques, creating illustrated and stitched goodies for her new Etsy shop.
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