Tell us a little bit about yourself!
Everyone has a story, and for all of my life, I felt drawn to understanding an individual’s story. For as long as I can remember, I have relished really ‘getting to know’ people. I almost hesitate to say this, but I almost dislike pleasantries, like, how’s your day, what about this weather, etc. I’ve always wanted to get right down into understanding the background of a person, what makes you who you are. From that aspect, I have developed some pretty good listening skills, and overtime, noticed that more and more people tend to open up to me early in a relationship and I have before long, known something about a person that they have ‘never told anyone.’ I have long thought this was just an interesting trait that I am able to draw out of people, until one day two years ago, I attended a psychic fair and was told that I am a healer and a teacher. It took me a while to understand how that really fit into my life, but through this journey, I have come to understand that before I took on a more traditional role of a healer, that having people open up to you is a sure sign that you are a healer too.
Not long after this amazing psychic experience, I started to experiment more with my own creativity. In fact as soon as I returned home from this awesome event I made my first painting, which I like to call “Into the void”. And a second painting which still sits on my bedroom wall, and it’s a peacock by a tree, two strong symbols for me and my life. I am constantly inspired by animals and nature, and especially trees. I find that the best inspiration can be found in an amongst all of natures creation. On top of my artistry, I have a formal training in Theta Healing, which I currently take clients for in person and over the phone. I also teach painting workshops which combine both energy healing work and artistry.
In your opinion, what defines an “artist”?
Everyone is an artist. I have a strong belief that every person has a unique gift that they came here to express. Not every gift takes on a traditional artistic format like painting, sculpting etc. I have seen the most ornately decorated houses, multi-flavored meals, perfectly manicured lawns, and in each and every one of those outlets there is a person behind it that is ‘the artist’. A person who gets lost in an activity they love. That’s how I define an artist.
What things inspire your work?
I feel all my work is divinely inspired. I think almost everyone who wears an artist hat (which we learned previously is everyone) at some point receives divine inspiration for their work. Whenever you create art that comes from the core of who you are, it becomes not only an expression of you, but an extension of the divine. That said, I feel a very strong connection to nature, and love to see the unique and ornate patterns within everything that grows. I’ve taken a liking lately to macrophotography, it gives you a unique view from the world that you have to stop and really look at to see.
Do you have a certain process when creating?
When I create my artwork, I generally like to take a bit of time to get myself centered, I release any distractions I might have rolling around in my brain, and then I try to set the tone, either by putting on some quiet music, lighting a candle, having a brief walk. This usually helps jump start my creativity. From there, I try to just open up and allow inspiration to come. And for me the less I think about it the better. Often I hear guidance in my mind as I go, try yellow here. How about a flower there, sort of thing and I try not to question it, I just listen and it almost always works.
Do you have a formal background in art or are you self taught?
I have never taken any formal classwork on art. My mom taught me how to make a quilt in high school, and from there, I have been just ‘seeing stuff I like’ and trying to see if I can make it. Painting has been the first thing that is a mostly ‘original work’ where I create stuff that isn’t really from something someone else has made, but a unique piece based on an idea in my mind.
What are three things that you value the most in your work?
Selfishly, I create art, mostly for me. I never really set out to be a famous painter, I discovered how amazing I felt when I was in a creative moment, and I just decided that I wanted to have more of that feeling. And as an extension to that I also want to help others connect to this feeling as well.
I enjoy seeing how my art can inspire, it seems sort of crazy, but I truly believe that as you create something, your energy goes into it, so if you have an angsty artist that has lots of built up anger and they take it out on the canvas, you can feel it when you look at the painting. I had a particular series I developed of 4 paintings, that as I was developing, got me really emotional, like I literally started to cry as I did them. I showed them to one of my intuitive teachers, and she immediately said, oh, these make me want to cry. So I truly believe art can be transformative, and what energy you put in can be an extension to the person receiving it.
I teach workshops and my favorite part of this process is watching people become more confident and empowered. Generally most folks start out feeling they are not creative and can’t make a beautiful piece, but what they miss is that, saying you aren’t creative is just a belief, once you get past that you can open up the door to so much more possibility. So being able to teach others how to connect to their creative nature is priceless in that sense.
What advice would you give an aspiring artist?
If it’s something you love to do, make and protect time to do it. And never give up, especially if it’s something you love. Generally when you feel like quitting, you are only halfway there, just keep going. Oftentimes when I paint, I get part of the way in and say, ugh, I don’t like this one, and I keep hearing, just keep working on it, try a little of this, or try a little of that. Eventually it gets there, but you can;t give up so soon. Do it for the process if this helps you, don’t focus so much on the end goal. Focus on how it makes you feel when you do it.
You can connect with Jessica through her website, which links to all the other places she shares her art: http://www.jessicakippes.com.