Artist Michelle Tanguay is crazy talented. She’s been in the art world since age 17, when she moved to Detroit on her own to pursue her talents. Day in and day out, she made art. As she painted, opportunities began to flow in. Now she is an established artist with an undeniable gift.
Take a closer look at the series of faces above. Each one is a Detroit native who wandered into her studio. They are all painted on up-cycled banners from the city’s Jazz Festival. Michelle composed over 40 portraits as an homage to the great community she’s grown to love.
“People inspire me, Detroit inspires me. People from Detroit inspire me, they have a fight in them like no one else does.” —Michelle Tanguay
Michelle is wearing: Clarksburg Sweatshirt & 1889 Double Front Dungaree.
Flipping through the pages of a book about color as a child, little Molly was fascinated by the magic of making your own colors. You add a bit of this hue to that hue, and you’ve created one all your own. For that precise reason, Molly has formed a passion for painting over any other medium. As the color wheel spins, so does the inspiration.
Now she finds painting to be therapeutic, to sit in the studio and work from sunrise to sunset as if no time has passed. Molly draws from real life. The natural world with its ever morphing organic shapes and perfectly placed patterns and colors bring her a vision and mood to aspire towards. With every new season, a new palate. With every new hour, a new shade.
Molly has a bit of advice for beginning painters out there:
“Don’t be afraid to copy. I can’t tell you how many things I’ve taught myself or learned just by trying to emulate someone else’s work. I think the biggest hurdle for a lot of people have is that they don’t feel “creative enough.” Or they stare at a blank page, not knowing where to start. Pull up a piece of your favorite art or something that caught you eye on the internet, and make your own version. When you’re done, you’ll realize you have your own style and your own perspective. Also, don’t worry if your expectations are not matching what you’re making. I’ve learned that’s a good thing! It keeps you working toward.”
The piece Molly painted in the photos below is truly inspired by nature, as you can see. Sure she may have had to trudge through the snow with painting supplies in tow, but what better way to find your peace and translate an authentic winter scene? This piece is available for sale on Molly’s Etsy page. Take a look for yourself here.
Molly is wearing: The Amoret Jacket, Series 1889 Slim Double Front, & Watch Hat.
When it comes to being creative and artistic, it can be tough to know where to start. It often helps to have a guide or inspiration to serve as a jumping off point. Faina Lerman of Popps Packing in Detroit creates mixed media masterpieces. She’s going to walk you through the steps to make some art on your own.
- Matt medium
- Bristol board or watercolor paper
- Watercolor paint or gouache
- Drawing Materials of choice: pencils, markers, highlighters and pens.
- Collage cut outs (small pieces from magazines like national geographic, newspapers or fashion magazines.
- A cup of water
- Paper towel
- Small watercolor brushes
Step 1: cut out collage pieces to have on hand before you begin. Choose things that have interesting colors and shapes. Make sure to cut out shapes carefully and include details. Make the shapes interesting not just a square or a circle, it is fun to reconfigure some of the images. For example, cut out a zebra in the shape of a frog.
Step 2: create an atmospheric color field on your paper. This will be the background for the collage. Try not to over work it. Use a wash or watery mixture of the colors. Think of the sky or a foggy day.
Step 3: pick out a few collage pieces to arrange on the paper. Play around with the composition. Do not glue anything until you are completely happy with the arrangement.
Step 4: mix some matt medium with water. Using your small brush paint the medium on the back of the cut out. Cover it completely. Place the collage piece on the paper and give it a quick brushing over the top to secure it in place. Try to brush out all the wrinkles.
Step 5: Let it dry. This is a good time to start another. I work on multiple pieces at one time.
Step 6: draw some marks or designs on the paper to enhance the image or to give it some extra layers. This creates a nice added texture to the collage.
take a look at Faina’s outfit here: Carhartt Women’s Coleharbor Hoodie & Clarksburg Zip-Front Sweatshirt
Ginny specializes in functional domestic pottery, essentially pieces meant for the home with a specific purpose. The idea that memories and home can stir up an interesting conversation for everyone drives her work. No matter what thoughts or recollections you bring into your home and kitchen, there is something about using items that are made by hand. It’s another connection, another conversation to be had. There is such a story to be told in a piece of handmade pottery. You can feel the grooves, the intent, and the beauty in such a way that inspires you. See more of Ginny’s work here.
check out this great throwing outfit: Carhartt Women’s Sandstone Mock-Neck Sherpa Lined Vest, Linwood Chambray Shirt, & Original-Fit Canvas Crawford Dungaree
Alright ladies, it’s time to fight for your right to wear summer clothes! Before the cool weather really starts rolling in, make sure to wear those flip flops and shorts as much as you can. In the spirit of Crafted in Carhartt, I wanted to carry an adaptation of this great quote by Marie Curie around with me.
“Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that?
We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves.
We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained.”
I stenciled it onto the back of my Carhartt Annapolis Shirt. What a great reminder to yourself, and those walking behind you, of the hard work we should put into our passions.
So it’s not screen printing, but it yields similar results. Using wax paper for T-Shirt stencils is simple and inexpensive. It looks great on the Carhartt Women’s Norfolk Tank, but you can stencil anything. Try the pattern provided above or come up with one of your own designs.
shop this look here: Norfolk Tank and Curvy Fit Tomboy Cropped Pant
It’s remarkable that the gas, dust, and stars that make up galaxies can be so breathtaking– so many colors and twinkling lights. Make a little bit of outer space your own by painting a T-shirt in it’s likeness.
shop this look: Calumet V-neck Tee, Tomboy Hooded Vest, Straight Fit Jean
Small worlds and fairy tales, vibrant colors and amusement parks. That’s what drives Brooke Weston’s mixed media creations. Brooke works out of her home in Portland making the most unique dioramas I’ve ever laid eyes on. What glorious combinations of dream lands and taxidermy! Check out a few of her other pieces HERE.
shop Brooke’s look: Huron Shirt, Clarkston Cami, Straight-Fit Slim Straight Jean, and Duck Nail Apron.
This week’s craft revolves around silhouettes and form. Stop by your local hardware store and see if they give away their scrap wood for free. Turning trash into treasure is great for your wallet and much more satisfying. As far as taking a photo to use as a guide for the silhouette,
make sure to wear something that defines your body. I wore my Bainbridge Jacket because the princess seams along the sides create a very flattering, hour-glass shape. Also, try wearing your hair up in a pony tail or bun to help define your outline. Cameos and other silhouettes are typically black and white. Maybe try mixing in other colors or leave the natural wood exposed.
shop this look: Bainbridge Jacket, Cheyenne Shirt, Carhartt Jeans