How does one become an artist, Vanessa Tiegs?


With enough inspiration, freedom, and preparation, one transfers their emotional being into a chosen medium to communicate their soul visage.


Explain how that's done.


Imagine you could recycle yourself, your internal emotional being, into another form of existence. What might your chosen form be, where would it be, how would it feel to be in that new form? Many artists dedicate their lifetime to refining techniques by which to do this. While an audience reacts to their first impression of a work of art or a performance in less than a minute, it is actually the artist who has devoted their time, energy, and thoughtfulness into creating that moment of emotional reaction for the viewer. When audiences react strongly time after time to a work of art or to a performer, then the artist transferred their emotions into their chosen medium quite well, and their work receives applause. They have become an artist by leading their audience to follow them into the work. That's how it's done I suppose.


Is there a basic necessary ingredient for creating art?


Well, I think fantastic artistry is the result of fantastic self-nurturance. It really is an unconditional act of love to playfully explore with one's own emotions in a chosen medium. I think an artist is born the same way a young innocent child discovers how to grow in touch with his or her emotions. Children are curious investigators. It's after discovering their fears and self-criticisms, that inhibitions and false masks appear. Well those are precisely the ingredients that the artist must consciously transcend if he or she is genuinely going to set out to make art or perform.


So then what's the meaning of art?


Ultimately, the meaning of art is a mystery, that is because the meaning of art is in the eyes of each and every beholder, and that also includes the eyes of the inspired creator. I would rather ask, does the artist really fully understand the meaning and complete motivation behind his or her artistic creation? I would say probably not really fully because the creative process is ultimately a very playful adventure, a spirtual undertaking with an unknown destination in and of itself. Creating art is really the experience of transcending out of and transforming back into one's own essential self again, but doing it honestly takes careful listening skills.


Listening for ...?


Listening for emotions in the raw to arise before turning them into actions, or expressing them as words, movements, visuals, or sounds. Creating art is a self-nurturing gift that an artist offers others to witness or partake in. When we create art we either can disguise our emotions or recycle them into a newly chosen form. 


Who are you? 


I was born in the late 60's and have been an artist since I was a child.  I'm also a creative mentor. I inspire artistic students who wish to express themselves more passionately and freely but also with careful discernment. I myself am passionate and have expressed myself through dance, music, painting, sculpture, photography, and story-telling. My approach to mentoring other artists is to allow them to be independently empassioned creative emotional players with disciplined dedication. When I was a young dancer and was also learning how to play classical piano, I listened to every word of advice my teachers offered me. They knew what they were saying because they were empassioned artists themselves. 


Describe your path as an artist.


I first was a ballerina. I began learning classical ballet at age 5. I was lyrical and sensitive, and soon wanted to learn how to play classical piano to feel closer to the music. I also dabbled in acting in my early teen years, but speaking in front of cameras felt too difficult, which led me to try something different...  architectural design. While traveling in Europe years later, I discovered my interests in archaeology, constellations, astrology, lunar cycles and menstrual cycles, world mythologies, symbology, and Jungian pyschology. I explored sculpting with clay, writing calligraphy, painting, photography, and finally teaching.


What inspires you to create new art works?


Passion. Witnessing other artists unleashing their passion is contageous for me. It's ironic that our learned human emotional intelligence often camouflages our deepest feelings towards the very things that actually move us the most. For me, passionate expression is a welcome feeling, for it signals that I am awake. Therefore creating art is a way to satisfy my hunger for expressing passion! Art is a healthy outlet, or binge for me.


Can you say something about your work as a whole?


Well, my series of 88-paintings, Menstrala, is the work I'm famous for, but Menstrala is such a fraction of the whole. I always felt compelled to add new life to old life. So I would say that renewal is probably an underlying theme in my work as a whole.



Mind & Menstrala is the beginning of a new series. The images are visual interpretations of parts of my natal horoscope. Astrology integrates the mythology of the stars and planets with our human psyche. So for example, I have created a movie of how I envision Sedna at 0 degrees of Taurus on my Descendant. What does that mean? Well, after you watch the movie, you will have an idea.


Miniarcs were modern set designs that I built in miniature scale to trick the viewer into thinking they were spacial rooms in real life size. They were fun and took many months to make because in order to work well they had to have many intentional details executed correctly. Miniarcs were inspired into form because of the views I had while working in a downtown San Francisco hi-rise building designed by Philip Johnson.


VeryVivi, the book, is a light-hearted narration of life through the eyes of a sweet adorable Golden Retriever. Vivi was named for Life, and that she is the gift of life is the truth. She came into my life in 2009 as a gift from someone, not only so very dear to us, but who has left the planet since. The book took two years of photographing this precious angel every day. It was a real labor of immeasurable love.. The love unconditionally given and received from a dog to its human. I hope the book brings as much joy to others as she has brought joy to me.



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