Artist Interview: Christine Elizabeth Brown

Christine Elizabeth Brown
Shop Name: Fawn Over Me
Favorite Materials: Vintage Material, Sharp Scissors, Things with a mysterious past

Brief Bio:

I had the privilege of living with both sets of grandparents for different periods in my life
growing up. In both households nothing was thrown away. I think thereʼs a show for that
now called ʻHoardersʼ. No, it really wasn't that bad. Both were born in and around the
depression, and being thrifty was just a way of life for them. Needing to reuse and
salvage things, and my love for vintage came natural because I was constantly
surrounded by it. Weekends were spent either at: 1. The dump, or 2. Yard Sailing
(pronounced “yaad saillinʼ with a New England accent) or 3. Church. We were always
on the hunt for something that someone else was getting rid of so we could reuse it, fix
it, or place it with some collection already started.

My first creative memories...
I remember being in kindergarten and drawing a ladybug. The paper was huge, I
remember the plastic-y smell of my oversized smock. The teacher called out step-by-
step instructions as she walked around the table. The outcome was this beautiful
masterpiece in red paint and black crayon. My grandmother kept it for 20+ years and
gave it to me as a gift few years ago in a frame. I couldn't believe she kept it. It inspires
and reminds me why I am on this earth. One day will be on display in my own studio.

I was always drawing. In fourth grade I was only allowed to have one writing utensil and
was constantly monitored because I was drawing on everything, even my desk. I used
to feel like an outsider, and I didn't understand why I saw things differently. Being artistic
was like a punishment instead of a gift. Fast forward a fey years, to when my mother
took me to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston when I turned 13. It changed my life. I
realized I wasn't the only person who saw the world in this huge collage of color,
emotion, pattern and form. That trip opened my eyes in a lot of ways. It took awhile to
explore and accept over the years, but now I boldly declare: “Hey, Iʼm an artist.” I see
the world different because I believe I was meant to.

My Creative life transitioned...
now that I am married. Sometimes I feel guilty that our house is overflowing with stacks of fabric, canvases, hat boxes, pyrex bowls full of buttons, clothes racks, and multiple vintage baby scales. I wonder when my husband will say that he wants the dining room back. But he is the most supportive, understanding man I have ever met. God knows what he is doing when He puts two people together. corny...just say it, I know you want to.

I have always been creating/making something, if not for me, then for someone else. Planning weddings, performing poetry. The need to express myself through some creative process has so far overridden any other event or circumstance. If I do stall, I go to an art museum, a poetry reading or listen to music to get re-inspired. I explore blogs, etsy, and have discovered Pinterest, which is new and amazing. I have already logged hundreds of hours.

God and creativity... 
I believe that God has a plan for each of us. My business card says: “Created” with
the scripture Ephesians 2:10.  What it means to me is that we all need to be striving to fulfill what God has individually created us to do.  He designed us and thought about who we were going to be at the beginning of time. Thats amazing!

God is the ultimate artist. Have you ever looked really close at a flower petal? Or
slowly sifted a handful of sand?. I see the simplest things as art, art is all around. We
just need to slow down and really look at things sometimes. If we take the time, we can
be really inspired, and humbled.

One thing that ushers me into worship is...
Music. To get into true worship I think about how undeserving I am of the things that I
have. I think about what God has done for me, and my family. I think about how small
I am in this expanding universe. I stop thinking about how I look, or who is looking at
me. I lift my palms and close my eyes. The music envelopes me and I become part of
the fold with the rest of the worshipers. Its amazing to me that God created each one
of us, and he cares for us so much.

My Creative influences are... 
my mother. Since she is an artist herself, she understands me in a way no one else can.
plus she “Grew me in her body!”...a phrase I heard all the time growing up when I was
being an unreasonable selfish teenager. She sacrificed a lot so we could have the best
life possible, and she pushed me and encouraged me in my artists journey. She has purchased supplies, and is my #2 at flea markets, always finding things for me and
pointing me in the right direction. Another influence is my dear friend Kathryn Smith.
She was also my youth leader, and ran a ministry for young adults from her house
where I met my husband (she also takes credit for this!). One day the sewing machine
she gave me broke, and she lent me another one of her own so I could make my
deadlines and finish products. I am still using that machine. She is selfless, infinitely
creative, and is led by God in everything she does.


 My husband Ethan is the one who I run all my ideas through, and he has to deal with the small mountains of fabric all around our house. He motivates me and handles logistics for all my shows. He is also my biggest cheerleader, oh how I love that man. 

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