January 26, 2009
renee garner : artists who blog
renee's website: www.wolfieandthesneak.com
renee's blog: www.nobitingwolfie.blogspot.com
Why did you decide to start a blog?
I (Renee) started the blog to document and better understand what it means to be a "wife". We were planning our wedding and it was full of the dramas that surround that sort of thing. I was way out of my element with all the traditions and expectations, so I was completely weirded out by the idea of being a wife--and whatever that role might entail. Once the wedding was over, though, normal life resumed and we continued on in our creative life while all of those traditional expectations fell by the wayside.
How did you come up with the name of your blog?
The name of the blog is actually a transition from No Biting Wolfie. Wolfgang is our oldest dog (at a very young 3 yrs 11 months old) and when he was teething we kept saying "No biting, no biting, Wolfie," which stuck around out of it's cuteness. We were sewing hats and scarves at that time, but as the lines changed into a more natural fit for us (2-d fine art) we felt an evolution of the name was in order, so we incorporated the name of our oldest cat, The Sneak (or his lesser known full name: Sneaky Sneaky Freak Show). et voila! Wolfie and the Sneak was born!
How has blogging affected your work as an artist/designer?
Blogging has let me explore the nuances of words. It keeps me looking and interested in the world at large. Charlie has little to do with the blog itself (except for posing for pictures and being a key role in the madcap adventures of Wolfie and the Sneak), but for me, blogging has been a portal to self-expression, meeting new artists and a good excuse to look around for cool things I want to remember and share. Sharing brings me a huge amount of joy. At the same time, I've perhaps seen too much and read too much, so I'm constantly wondering about originality and maintaining an honest voice in our work. Charlie is integral to keeping me in check that way, too.
What are your favorite artist/designer blogs? Why?
101 Cookbooks: May not really count as an artist/designer blog in the most literal sense, but I can get lost in Heidi's photographs, and I also believe that a body provided with rich nutrients also feeds the creative spirit.
Another Limited Rebellion: A deeply ingrained belief system and interesting design=awesome.
Creature Comforts: While we have different styles, her eye for design and color is dreamy perfection.
Michael McDowell: There's a calm, quiet beauty in his blog.
Modish: Not only because Jena is sweet enough to let me preach some eco-gospel on Fridays, but because she has exquisite taste, and really fights to keep the indie community going.
and the whole long list of favorites on my blog.
Why do you think blogs have now become so popular with artists and designers?
Blogs provide an immediate experience; you can create and edit in a few minutes and post it to share. There's less critique with the informality of a blog, I believe. And it's also a great way to get positive reinforcement, build a following and connect with others, despite the time zones and spatial differences of being international peers.
Do you have any advice for artists/designers who are starting a blog?
Just jump in and do it. You have total editorial control, there are no rights or wrongs--it's just one big blank canvas you can paint with images and words whenever you feel like it!
What has been the most positive and inspirational aspect of having a blog for you?
The permission I've given myself to be creative every day (or not, if I choose not to post) and seek new ideas out from the world wide web. Luckily, those explorations have also introduced me to some fantastic artists, too!
What do you find the most difficult/most rewarding part of having a creative profession?
The most rewarding is getting to create things on a daily basis! There is nothing quite like the feeling when all the work comes together for an ah ha moment, when everything just clicks into place. Unfortunately, it's really discouraging and difficult when I can envision something, but just can't seem to get to that point where if finally does come together.
Other than your blog, what has been the most effective way for you to promote your art/design?
Forming friendships and authentic connections. Taking time to know one person, and really develop a relationship, whether working or casual, feeds creativity as well as forges foundations for whatever projects may come up in the future!
How do you maintain a healthy work/life balance?
I'm in constant struggle with the concept of balance. This is one of Charlie's greatest assets, his even mindedness, so he brings me back to reality on a regular basis.
What are your main goals for 2009?
Find balance! Continue learning, focus.
As for now, I'm concentrating on Peer both as a product and as a concept. I consider it an art piece in itself, and want to be fair and make sure I give it the attention and development I feel the idea deserves.