We are delighted to publish the second of our new styled interview entitled ‘Mobile Artists on Their Artistry’. Within this interview, we ask highly successful mobile artists twenty questions about their backgrounds, their work, social media, how Covid-19 has influenced their creative life and so much more…
Today, we are very proud to publish Multi Award Winning Mobile Artist, Jane Schultz from, Pennsylvania, United States, interview. Schultz is an experienced mobile photographer and artist best known for her unique self portraiture. Frequently she is the star of her own images and her images are enigmatic. In many ways, Schultz appears to lay herself bare, physically and metaphorically, her images cryptic but candid. She creates mystery surrounding her ideas and all of her images have this ethereal wonder about them with ambiguity drawing the viewer in.
Schultz’s images have been exhibited in museums, art centers, and galleries on an international basis, including in Florence, Rome, and Paris, and featured in numerous publications for photography and mobile artistry.
How would you introduce yourself to someone who doesn’t know your work?
I see music and create without rules. As such, my work is diverse in the sense that it encompasses darker portraits, colourful ICMs and collages, and nature pieces. It spans from from an expressionist exploration of emotional depths to an impressionist exploration of movement based photography resulting in imagery that takes place in space and time. It is all documented and explored in iOS based photographic images. My goal is not to create a gallery where everything looks very similar but to create art that is inspiring to me at the moment, while pushing my boundaries. To me, this is much more interesting.
Creating is not the end of my involvement in the mobile art community. My work has been recognized in numerous art competitions and exhibited internationally. I also administer Edit from the Soul and @ig_artistry, Facebook and Instagram sites which promote originality, creativity, and emotive art, curate for the New Era Museum, judge and juror photographic competitions, and teach mobile photography and artistry. It is a world of mobile art.
What name do you use within social media and was this a conscious decision?
Ahhh. My usernames most definitely express the work published thereunder. I started out with one account on Instagram under the name @phot0bug. As my work became more art oriented, I realised that username was no longer self descriptive. As time evolved, I started publishing in three galleries with three user names which come from very beautiful and poignant lyrics by the band Marillion. This ties intimately to the works as lyrics are often integral to my images, being the finishing touches and part of the titles to most of my images. @before.1st.light, from Afraid of Sunlight, comes from the lyric “Small boats, on the beach at the dead of night, come and go, before first light” which was representative of Instagram to me as it exploded in size and the small world and intimate relationships created there began to vaporize. The album of the same title relates to the destructive nature frame and asks how we have become afraid of sunlight, the essence of our lives, and as such became the home for my darker expressionist work which brought my first acclaim. @after.1st.illumination, a play on the @before.1st.light username, came to be after a collaboration with an artist from Berlin who pushed me hard and in new directions creatively. #ixifamily It contains bursts of color and playfulness. Lastly, @the.sky.above.the.rain comes from a song of the same title. The song is a love song about a couple with an impaired relationship struggling to find each other again, whose hope is to “Rise up to that blue space above the clouds, where troubles die”. Life is tough for us all, in different ways, and art can take us to new and better places. I wanted to give the viewer that blue space through the beauty of nature, and that’s primarily what can be found here.
What kind of family did you grow up in?
Loving and supportive with some broken parts, and with elements that pass from generation to generation.
Did your childhood influence your ideas about creativity?
Not in a way that I can identify but our childhoods form us, so it must have.
Did your parents support your creativity?
Sadly, my Mom had passed by the time I truly started creating. I expect that she would have been very proud.
When was the first time you knew you wanted to be an artist?
It has been a process. Somewhere in the 2012-14 timeframe, I’d look at the works of some of the more respected members of the mobile art world and say to myself, “I want to do that. Not to copy what they were doing but to create work that engendered their respect.” They influenced my ideas about creativity, expressing it in my work, staying true to mobile, working and using my own work as opposed to stock. A turning point came to be in 2014, when I met and spent time with a few members of our community at my first physical exhibition. They viewed me as an artist, before I did myself. It is only recently that I am truly comfortable with that title.
What is creativity to you?
Breaking the mold, expression, coming from your own mind and soul, a gentle explosion that comes from opening the mind and letting it come out – resulting in a tangible or digital formation.
What did you do before (if appropriate) becoming an artist?
I was a lawyer, the VP intellectual property at a high tech corporation. My responsibilities included transactions with multinational telecommunication device manufacturers, like Apple and Samsung. I did a lot of IP licensing, purchases and sales.
Where are you most creative?
At home with a good block of time to let the wave take hold.
What inspires you?
Taking my digital processes into a hybrid experience. This appears in my recent project Now Wash Your Hands. I also recently took a workshop in cyanotypes. This inspired me in a way that I haven’t been in a long time. Expect to see some of these mixed in with my other work but don’t expect much or judge too harshly. They are tricky and results are hard to get.
Who inspires you?
You do. Also, recently, Agnès Clairand and Angela Chalmers make my heart sing.
Does your engagement on social media help you to plan your future projects?
Not the engagement per se but it can push me to start new projects and art that I view can inspire me, as well.
What does your average day look like?
That’s a tough question as my days can be quite different. One commonality is that they typically start with a large cup of latte with my husband and end with a TV show together on our couch. In between, my days encompass ordinary things like taking walks and running errands. They are best when they include friends, nature, and of course creating art.
Is it your intention to ask questions or make the viewer question what they see?
It’s my intention to create and express, sometimes with a theme in mind. I think this often results in a little of both.
Is there humour in your work?
My @after.1st.illumination has some work with a humorous spirit.
How important is failure in your work process? Do you incorporate it into your creative process?
I don’t view things in my life as a failure and I’m not really sure how one can fail at art. I also don’t view failure as the opposite of success as living life itself is often a process and creating art can involve experimentation. For example, sometimes, no matter how hard I work on and image and no matter how much I liked my initial concept, I don’t like the results. Is this failure? Always remember the Mary Pickford quote, “‘Failure’ is not the falling down, but the staying down”. If it made me quit mobile editing, then it might well be. Instead I forget about it and move on. As to that image, I put it away to give it space and may come back to it later. Often, it clicks and I can finish it quickly in a way that I’m really satisfied with. If it doesn’t, I move on again.
How do you deal with criticism?
As well as anyone 😆 It depends on the spirit and intention it is given with. I welcome constructive good intentioned advice but have no time for people with ill will or pettiness in their hearts.
Has the Covid-19 pandemic influenced your creative life?
It’s given me more quiet introspection. I’ve found my art has migrated to a more organic state.
Who dead or alive would you like to have dinner with?
You, Vincent, and so many of the wonderful people in our mobile art community. I’d also life to talk with some of my ancestors and ask them the things I wish I did while they were alive.
What is the best piece of advice that you’ve heard and still repeat to others?
There are so many.
-If you have your health, you have everything.
-Get over it.
-Don’t spend what you don’t have.
-If you don’t ask, you don’t get.
-(when entertaining) You can never have too much food.
-Be yourself. Stand up and be beautiful you!
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