We’re so excited to kick off our creator interview series with one of our favorite artists: Jennifer Daily. We commissioned a custom piece from Jennifer Daily Art for our #mgdwindward dining room, which you’ll see throughout this post. Her work adds the perfect amount of whimsy to a space, don’t you think!?
Today on the mgd log, we caught up with Jennifer and found out how she got started, what keeps her inspired, and what she’s working on now. Keep reading to learn more and prepare to get inspired! Then, head to Jennifer Daily Art on Instagram to see more of her beautiful work.
01 / How did you get started in what you do?
When I was in high school, I discovered that I loved painting and drawing. I would stay up late at night working on these hyper-realistic figure drawings. I would just get lost in the process and let my mind clear – almost like a meditation. Then, I ended up getting a degree in graphic design and put my fine art aside for many years. When my kids were little I stayed home with them and took up painting again. I was trying to recapture my creativity and find some of that inspiration I had as a teenager. I took my time figuring out my painting style, but I knew that eventually I wanted to dive in whole-heartedly and make it a career. My husband has always encouraged me to do what I love, so here I am, painting and loving my job every day.
02 / Where do you find inspiration for your paintings?
Inspiration is everywhere, and I often find myself taking photographs of really random things while we’re out. Just last week I took some photos while we were driving over the Bay Bridge of these really beautiful frenetic marks on the cement median made by car tires that had gotten too close. They looked almost like handwriting, scribbled there in charcoal. I find a lot of inspiration in worn textures and accidental marks like that. I also collect photos of shadows. And when I’m in the studio I usually have my headphones on and some good music playing. If I play it loud enough, the music will tell me what to do.
03 / Where did you find your signature style?
It really happened once I stopped trying so hard to achieve a certain outcome and started paying attention to what I enjoyed doing most in my art making process. I spent years trying to make my work look one way or another and felt very frustrated. But I took a class with Nicholas Wilton who taught me that all you have to do is adopt a practice of playful experimentation and pay attention to the things that make you feel energized. For me that turned out to be neutral color palettes, tons of texture, rough mark making, and collaging with hand painted paper.
04 / How do you know when a painting is complete?
My process involves a lot of mess making. Then a lot of tidying up. My job is to show the viewer the parts of the mess that I find beautiful, and to clear away everything else. So if I’m not satisfied with the painting I know I need to clear away more distractions. Eventually I look at it and only see beauty. Then I’m done.
05 / What are you working on at the moment?
At the moment I’m starting on a new series of large paintings that I hope to have ready later this Spring. I’m in the stage where I’m just making messes and having fun. I have no idea what direction this series will go.
06 / What is your best piece of advice for aspiring creators?
Find a mentor. When you’re trying to make your art into a career there’s no defined path. It can all feel a bit overwhelming. But with the right mentor not only will you save yourself a lot of frustration but you’ll feel supported and more confident moving forward.
07 / Where can our readers go to see more of your work?
You can find my work on my website at www.jenniferdailyart.com and at my galleries: Anne Irwin Fine Art in Atlanta and Design Supply in Birmingham.
Shop our favorite Jennifer Daily Art prints:
Thanks so much for following along with our interview with Jennifer Daily Art. Are you feeling inspired? We know we are! Visit our lifestyle section on the log for more Q&As with the MGD team and let us know in the comments who you’d like to see us interview next!