If you would like to be featured here, send me an email and I will send you the list of questions/prompts.
Today's interview is with Sandra Wiley:
1. A little bit about your background, where did you grow up, where do you live now, education, family, etc...
I always say I grew up in Berkeley, but I spent my childhood in South Gate. South Gate is a city in LA County, in the South East corner...yeah, that corner. It's interesting that in South Gate you can rent a motel room by the hour. Growing up, I had no idea that this wasn't normal. I later found out that it's because of all the sex workers that worked there.
I've always drawn or painted. I can't remember not doing so. I learned how to knit when I was 9 and crochet when I was 7. My mom always was doing something, making things, like hats made out of beer cans and Christmas wreaths made out of sandwich baggies. I grew up watching her and learning.
3. What did you do for fun as a teenager?
I was a pretty wholesome kid, until I went to college. So, we did things like toilet paper other kids houses and go to the movies. Sometimes we would cruise around Hollywood or go down to the beach. We did a lot of family stuff also.
4. What and when was your first job?
My first job was flipping burgers at a "Der Weinerschnitzel" when I was 16. It was right across the street from the High School.
5. What was your first work that really pleased you as an artist?
I guess that would be the first poncho I made when I was 7 years old. It was blue and white and I loved that thing.
6. Who was the first artist to influence you?
My mom. Though she would never call herself an artist. My dad painted and we used to watch Bob Ross all the time; but my mom really influenced my work.
7. What art movements do you relate to?
I love folk art from all over the world. Just people, using resources that are available to them, making beautiful (often useful) pieces of art. I love that.
Sometimes I'll get repeat orders and then the pieces feel tedious. But, the beauty is that no two pieces are ever the same, so there is often the feeling of surprise, even when I think I'm doing the same thing.
10. Most significant project or accomplishment?
I was pretty pleased with my sculpture of "Big Red". She was significant because she taught me to let go of my preconceptions and go with the flow.
11. What are your goals?
So many! Though I love my money job (it really is the best job ever!), I would really love to do art full time. I want to raise my own fiber animals (llamas, goats, rabbits, sheep) and grow my own veggies. I'd like to make my own cloth and maybe even have a little shop on my land to sell my wares. I'd also love to continue teaching in some capacity, maybe art classes or even childbirth preparation classes. I'm still young. One day, I may have it all figured out.
I don't have cable. But, I stream stuff all the time. It's been fun introducing my kids to my favorite movies from when I was a kid. Interesting how things have changed.
14. Do you believe in magic?
Yes, of course.
15. Should there be censorship?
No, but expression should not be forced upon those that don't want to hear it.
16. What advice would you give to others?
About what? Love? I say hold out for the right one. Work? No job is too small and try to get paid what you are worth. Art? Do what you love, someone else will love it too. Kids? Ya got me there!