How do you describe your work?
My work is an ongoing dialogue, constantly shifting and evolving, cycling around to greet old ideas again with a new approach. I like making art that can be perceived as simply what it is, a collection of composed forms in colors that are pleasing or intriguing, as well as a deeper engagement of thought and feeling. It can be about color and composition. It can be about passion and intuition. It is something as entirely unique for me the creator as it is for the viewer. I like to create things that I enjoy making and looking at. I like to make paintings that inspire curiosity and numerous interpretations.
When did you first realize you wanted to create? Who or what influenced or inspired you?
I know it sounds cliche, but I honestly always knew I wanted to live a life focused on creativity. It's in my blood, with visual artists on my mother's side of the family and musicians on my father's side. Between music, art, dance and theatre, the world of Art is a world I inhabit quite comfortably. My greatest inspirations have been within my family. My grandmother (mom's mother) was a painter that started late in life but was truly the most elegant painter I've ever met. She passed away when I was 10 but I feel her by my side supporting me and believing in me. She said some encouraging words when I was a child painting with her that I'll always carry with me as the best and most influential critique I've ever received. My other grandmother was a great lover of Jazz and she gave me the flames of passion that go to the depths of the soul. I was able to share my teenage years with her and she taught me a lot about being a strong woman - her passion and strength are certainly present in myself and my work. I'm lucky to have a long list of people and points of inspiration that have helped keep my dream alive through the years. I know I'm blessed to have this support.
What do you enjoy most about the creative process?
The feeling when everything CLICKS. There's a moment when you realize you're really focused and connected and things are happening intuitively just like you want them to. It's a wonderful feeling. It confirms the idea of believing in something happening before it happens, because it can't come about without believing it's coming... or at least that’s how it works for me.
What do you do when you need a creativity boost?
I get outside of myself. That’s first and foremost. Painting is such a deeply probing activity, you can’t stay down there (or up there?) too long or it’s likely to mess with your head. I do something that connects with the most basic principals of living - I cook a meal, I take a walk, I talk to someone I care about, I look at the moon. Not putting demands on creativity allows it to exist and flourish in a natural amount of time. It’s easy to forget about the rest of life when you’re sucked into a painting but LIFE is what fuels painting so balance is always something to strive for.
How did you get started with your online business, and how would you like your business to grow?
I started selling my art online on eBay until a fellow painter named Amanda Hone told me about Etsy in late 2006. I liked everything about the site as an eBay alternative because it focused on creative people. I enjoyed several years operating as http://www.etsy.com/shop/livefunky until late 2009 when I opened my gallery collection shop at http://www.etsy.com/shop/jessicatorrant which focuses on my finest original paintings. My focus right now is on doing my best work and painting as sincerely and earnestly as possible. I have experimented with many different ways of selling my creative vision through the years, but this year I’m challenging myself to focus entirely on my greatest passion, which is painting. I’ve been distracted in the past, I’m keeping myself focused and determined. Whenever I am fully committed, whenever I am enjoying the process, whenever I feel that thrill knowing a painting is finished or at least going somewhere really exciting - that’s when everything else clicks into place.
Jessica recently opened up a new etsy shop of hand carved one of a kind rubber stamps called Green Garden Stamps.
Check out all of Jessica's sites
blog - http://jessicatorrant.blogspot.com/
the gallery collection - http://jessicatorrant.etsy.com/
livefunky - http://livefunky.etsy.com/
flickr - http://flickr.com/livefunky
portfolio - http://artwanted.com/jtorrant
twitter - http://twitter.com/livefun
Thank your Jessica for sharing your inspirational story with all of us.