Here’s a little bit about her:
Aleese is a small town Albertan born, Vancouver based painter.
She specializes in acrylic portraits and graphite drawings, but in recent years she has returned to photographing lovely landscapes, and painting them.
She has been lucky enough to be involved in art collectives, teach after school art programs on the east side and hold life drawing classes at the butchershop.
In past years she has constructed three- dimensional sculptures for Public Dreams productions and continues to construct pieces and facilitate workshops to wonderful festivals around the lower mainland.
She is currently teaching portrait lessons, (which was a delightful surprise) and is participating in the thirty days project.
And here’s how she answered my 6 questions about creativity:
What does it mean to you to be creative?
Staying involved, and remaining hungry to learn and explore.
I’ve started to realize that what you do in all aspects of your life feeds your imagination. It is so important to create space in your life for making art, respecting how important that time is, and having people in your life that support and propel you forward.
In University we had a professor tell us in
5 years/10 people out of our class would be making art, in 10 years/5 people, in 15 years, maybe 2.
I remember thinking that sounded so sad, but I suppose he was trying to tell us that sustaining creativity is a commitment. I’ve found it incredibly hard at times, but it is always something I have found my way back to.
What triggers your creativity?
Surrounding your self with people who have passion and energy in their lives.
I also feel like the tiniest experiences have a huge cumulative effect on creativity.
One of my favorites this year was spending an afternoon as a volunteer with expert weaver, Alastair Heseltine. He was weaving with beautiful willow he had grown on Hornby Island and was creating an enormous outdoor snake installation.
Weaving with natural materials was something I had never been exposed to, and I was lucky enough to experience weavers sharing their knowledge and craft.
It was a fantastic day and I felt so content in the way you do when you have spent time learning about something new.
I think in the past, when I encountered someone doing something amazing, at times it made me feel sheepish that I wasn’t better at painting or drawing; but now it makes me feel excited to buckle down and work harder.
What hinders your creativity?
I have a couple.
Getting into the habit of doing nothing makes it easy to forget how important it is to practice.
It always surprises me how quickly I lose ground with my drawing when I am being lazy.
Feeling like what I am doing is not relevant or complex enough.
I also have to say TV. Once my rump hits the couch, I’m in trouble.
What’s the wildest journey your venturesome spirit has taken you on?
I have been on some pretty delightful summer adventures with my husband. One of my favorite camping trips we took was up the Dempster Hiway, into the Artic Circle.
I came home with some of the loveliest photographs and I was so itchy to paint them.
The landscape was so quiet and felt different from anything I had seen. We drove up late summer because we were hoping to witness the turn of season in the Yukon, which happens so quickly up north. The landscape had changed color as we returned from the Artic circle and drove back down to Dawson city.
I couldn’t believe we were able to photograph caribou, black foxes and Grizzly bears. It was my favorite (and most freezing) trip indeed!
What does being bold and provocative mean to you?
Taking chances, making mistakes, and failing.
It used to take the wind out of my sails if a proposal wouldn’t get accepted. Now I see it as an opportunity to take another look at my work, push it farther, or make some alternative choices. I see it as growth.
It doesn’t always feel great, but it’s necessary.
What’s next for you?
I have some one in mind and I have been dying to draw their portrait, but I hardly know them at all. My next challenge is to approach them without sounding like a nutter, and not scare them away!
And here’s a photograph that inspires Aleese’s creativity:
Be sure to check out Aleese’s website at:www.aleesenessler.com
To hear about the next Woman of the Month, follow DollyFaye on Twitter!