Today, we are publishing our seventeenth interview in our new series, Hope in Adversity. One that’s based around art, artists and isolation during the midst of Covid-19. This interview is with award winning mobile artist with Lynette Sheppard from Hawaii, United States. It’s clear when reading this interview that there is no real separation between art and life in Sheppard’s art. It’s socially engaged art containing just the right amount of energy and instinctive brilliance, enjoy!
To read others in this series of interviews with Jill Lian, Vicki Cooper, Gerry Coe, Sarah Bichachi, Sukru Mehmet Omur, Phyllis Shenny, Alisa Smith Williams, Joy Barry, Ile Mont and, Fleur Schim, Fiona Christian, Peter Wilkin, Ile Mont and Susan Latty, please follow this link
If you are social distancing or social isolating at this time, are you using any additional time you may have to create mobile digital art or photography?
My husband and I have been social isolating for three weeks. Since we both work at home, it doesn’t seem very different in some ways. But the days of friends dropping by, meetings of my writer’s group, trips to the beach are over for now. And that feels very different. I am not necessarily creating more art but my art feels different to me.
If so, have you noticed the style of art that you’re creating changing from what you would normally create?
Yes. My art has not changed much stylistically; I’ve always tended toward layered collages. The subject matter is different just now.
If yes, to the above, can you explain how your art has changed?
My images are darker and yet more hopeful at the same time. I believe that we as a global community are learning to live with paradox just now. This is a most painful, most inspiring time. Horrific stories and stories of overwhelming compassion are flooding the airwaves. As a nurse, I was on the front lines of another global pandemic – the AIDS crisis. The smell of bleach triggers a sort of PTSD. That, too, was a time filled with anguish and beauty. I’ve always felt that words can elevate an art piece and now I feel compelled to write a few lines with each mobile art offering. To me, it’s like another texture layer adding to the image.
Have you found additional inspiration to create at this time?
Absolutely. The kindness of strangers, the overwhelming sadness of loss, the missteps of officials, the extending of global community all fill me with a need to create.
Is creating mobile digital art/photography, helping you at this time specially, how and why?
Expressing my emotions visually in an art piece allows me to name my feelings, to confront them, and ultimately begin to heal through them.
Do you feel that sharing mobile art/photography at this time is spreading a unity of peace?
Hmmmmm. That’s a tough one. I feel that we connect and bond with a greater community by creating and sharing. I love when I dig down for an image and write about the feeling and someone comments that they were feeling exactly the same way. I’m not sure that translates to peace but it does feel like we are all in this together. And together, we will get through it.
Anything else you would personally like to add…
We will be changed by this. I am very certain of that. I am hopeful that we will ally with our better angels, but I don’t know for sure. Here are my wishes: May we open to a new love for one another as humans and animals, trees, flowers, the air, the planet. May we find joy in the midst of great suffering. May we cease competition and join hearts in cooperation.
One more thing, thank you so much Joanne, for the opportunity to reflect on these questions. You inspire me! And my gratitude to all the wonderful mobile artists for sharing your inmost hearts every day.
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