Artist Interview: Donna Wynn

Name:  Donna Wynn
Name of Business:  Yogiknitgirl Designs
Creative Influences:  Watercolor, Collage, Mixed Media and Knitting, Photography
Creative Artist Influences:  Definitely YOU!, Misty Mawn, Mondo Beyondo, Jen Lee,  Kelly Barton, Mindy Lacefield, Lisa Gonzalez, Cathy Bueti, Juliette Crane, Pixie Campbell, Danielle Daniel, Marisa of Creative Thursday,  Alisa Burke . . . so many along my creative way!
Preferred Medium of Creativity: Mixed Media (that way so much is included!) and Photography

Bio:  I try to live creatively everyday. I work full time as an Optician and Optical Manager for a high end optical practice and I say I get to play with creative eyewear everyday! I have to fit my time in my studio very selectively, It is my release from the demands of a busy "day Job" and I love it when I can spend time painting and creating whatever comes to mind and heart at the time! You will always find me behind a camera, trying to capture life moments and I practice hot yoga faithfully, love to knit . . . especially socks, that is why the name Yogiknitgirl came into being, and even though I am 54, I still consider myself a little girl!  I have been blessed with a 35 year marriage to a husband who supports me in every way, I have two adorable sons, 31 and 28, and they are each married and I have been blessed with two precious daughter n laws.  I believe in a powerful and loving God, who has blessed my life beyond words! I am truly living, right here and right now, the best time of my life.  I have discovered me and I like her!  

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1- What is one of your earliest creative memories?
 Learning to knit with two very special little old ladies when I was seven years old!  Loving art classes in elementary school and all the way through high school.
2 - How did you find your creative voice? 
I think first by creating my personal blog, Gentle Threads.  I had always loved writing and wanted to get the nerve to put my words out there.  I (along with many) watched Julie and Julia about a woman creating a blog about cooking her way through Julia Child's cookbook.  It truly gave me the inspiration to get out there and learn my way through the blog world.  My first entry was in March 26, 2010, and I have been going ever since!  I have grown in knowledge, words and in confidence. I have learned to navigate a blog on my own, write about my innermost creative feelings and adventures, and share my latest activities and artwork with others.   I look forward to writing each week and it has become a strong part of who I am now! 
3- Did your creative habits make a smooth transition into your adult life?  What did the evolution look like?  
Well, I think we tend to put our creative passions aside when we are building a life, for me marriage and raising two little boys, going to Opticianry school and working full time.  I always knitted, that was a given, then I purchased a weaving loom when my boys were little and piddled with it. I was a weaver, for a long time, but found for me, it just wasn't enough!  I was always fascinated with watercolor painting, but again, life just kept getting in the way to pursue anything.  It wasn't until my guys were in college and I was home without them, that I began to truly pursue artistic outlets.  I signed up for a watercolor painting class, took some workshops here and there, read anything I could get my hands on.    With the internet exploding, I was able to sign up for some amazing e-courses and learn in the comfort of my own home (and stay in my jammies!) I have attended Squam by the Sea, Serendipity Art Retreat and Art and Soul in the past few years and I found that through those experiences, my artistic life has exploded!  My children are married now and I have a beautiful studio to create in, more time to pursue my creative dreams.
 
4- If you had a creative hiatus, what event/circumstances brought you back to your creative lifestyle?  
This is an easy one for me to answer, I lost my father to Lung Cancer just four short years ago, and two years ago I lost my mom to the devastating disease of Dementia, I was a care-taker for quite awhile, fitting in some art whenever I could, but hardly ever. I felt as though my inner artist was drying up inside.  It is a time in my life I would do all over again, but yearned to find my creative little girl inside.  Just a month after losing my mom, I attended Squam by the Sea in the Outer Banks and my life was changed forever!  I met amazing women, took incredible art classes and mixed media opened up to me.  I came home full of creative ideas, new friendships and I have been going strong ever since.  I seek out creative time for myself and I even created my own Etsy shop for my creations.
 5-How has GOD been a part of your creative process/lifestyle?  
I have been a Christian for most of my life and am married to an incredibly strong and faithful man, I am very blessed.   I feel that I have learned to set priorities in my life, always doing what is right and what I must, before I can do what I want to.  That takes an enormous amount of energy.  I am balanced in my life, and I know that having a relationship with God, centers me.  It centers the way I live my daily life, my heart thoughts and my words and actions.  Because I am a truly centered and faithful person, God has blessed me with my talent and my strengths.


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