A talented Mixed Media & Portrait Artist – Interview
Who is Malinda? A new generation of emerging artists.
Hi Everyone! My name is Malinda Prud’homme and I’m a Mixed Media and Portrait Artist working full time from my studio in Toronto’s Art & Design District. My greatest passion is portraying that ALL women are beautiful in their own unique way. No matter their age, size, ethnicity, or personal style; women are gorgeous beings and it is my hope that my work will help them put aside their harsh self-criticism and see themselves are they truly are. While creating portraiture is my main passion, I also love to travel and therefore depict worldly scenes in my work from time to time. When I’m not making art or traveling I am likely cuddled up with a good book or TV show in my cozy little home which I call my “hobbit hole”.
How do you define creativity?
Creativity is a hard word to define because it takes form in SO many ways. For myself, creativity is when you use your mind and/or hands to make something out of nothing. I feel that taking part in some form of creativity is extremely important to the human mind. Whatever is being created does not need to be highly impressive, different, or even worth sharing. It’s the act of creating that is important. It allows our minds to think outside of the box which is something a lot of us lack in our currently society. Taking the time to use our body and mind for something other than the usual ins-and-outs of daily life helps us feel fresh and alive!
How did generating such images come about?
My artwork has definitely grown over the years. While I am still very happy with the quality of my early work I am very proud of my progression. I began my career part time and despite all of the advice I was given to “STICK TO ONE SUBJECT MATTER” I decided to let myself explore a variety of subjects and mediums to find my true passion naturally. I began with still life, travel images, and the occasional portrait but with time it became clear that my true talent and passion was for female portraiture. I have always felt very strongly about the struggles of women and have always wanted to make a stand against the strict rules we apply to ourselves based on what we see in the media. It was only natural that I began to share this message through my work.
Where do you find inspiration to create, if any?
I find inspiration EVERYWHERE! I honestly LOVE what I do so it is not hard for me to get up and go go go! I tend to find inspiration for my female empowerment work via current issues and the women around me. I also find a lot of inspiration from the places I travel to, the books I read, and the television shows I enjoy. All of this has begun to fade in comparison to the inspiration I receive from my fans. When people, particularly women, comment to tell me how my work and message has inspired them to be kinder to themselves and others, well, there is nothing better than that! It is the most fulfilling thing to experience and it drives me to continue my work.
Could you walk us through your editing process? Do you follow your instincts? An intuition, or do you go with the flow as it takes shape?
My process is very planned and executed step by step. Many artists like to go-with-the-flow, which I like to do on occasion, but generally I plan everything out before starting. My first step is choosing a muse. If it is a persona who has granted me permission to use their un-edited photo then I like to stay true to that persons features as much as I can. If it is an online image that has struck my fancy I try to alter it to fit my artistic desires and to make the image unique.
After my references are chosen I will create a scaled drawing either on white paper (for small work) or on kraft paper (for large work). When I am pleased with my drawing I transfer it over to the canvas or working surface and usually begin by blocking in the background. I have always felt that working on the items that are further away in the image first, and working my way up to the closer items and facial features, leads to a crisp highly professional looking piece. The depth is captured in a realistic way using this technique, nothing overlaps, and lines are nice and crisp. Working on one item at a time I focus on larger details then smaller details and end with the final touches (the facial features or tiny details) which brings the whole piece to life.
How do you feel about your work? I’m highly aware your work continues to inspire many individuals.
I absolutely LOVE my work! Do I think I’m “the best”? Absolutely not! Do I think I’m “the worst”? Absolutely not! My work is my own and I never compare myself to others (in the art world or in my personal life). I am very proud of the message I portray with my work and while I used to “hope” it would touch people I am now able to say that I KNOW is touches people. Receiving words of praise not only for my talent, technique, or style; but for my message as well, is something I live for.
How do you feel about social media platforms, is expressing creative work much easier or difficult? Is the future brighter for emerging artists like yourself?
Utilizing social media as an artist is PARAMOUNT! In this day and age art patrons are leaving their house less and turning to the internet more. I would say at least 75% of my sales and commissions are received via social media and my website. I put a lot of hours and energy into my sites for a reason; it works. Not only does it work but it allows someone who is extremely shy, like myself, to voice themselves clearly and have their work seen by thousands of people. I suggest any artist looking to make a career our of their artwork utilize as many social media sites as possible and have their own properly organized website. You have to put many hours in, you have to get a little personal, you have to work at it everyday; but a career in visual arts is possible! I’m living proof!
Any current projects you are working on?
I am currently working on a beautiful Indian Bride portrait for a client in Hong Kong! I am so overjoyed with this project! The composition and woman being depicted are absolutely stunning and I love working with metallic paints and real acrylic gems! I also LOVE to share my progress with my fans online as the piece is being made so that they can view it coming to life and learn a bit about how my work is done. The fact that this piece will be going across the world is just a big added bonus and I would be so thrilled if it led to more work in that area pf the world.
Any message for emerging artists, or those with a keen interest in photography? Words of inspiration.
Anyone who is thinking of becoming a professional artist can take hope from my experiences and know that it is possible. It is isn’t easy, in fact it’s a lot of work, but it is possible. My biggest advice is to never be hard on yourself, never compare your work or success to other artists, and do everything you possibly can to get your work seen. Daily social media posts, both art related and personal, are the best way to reach your audience and build on it too. Remember, art isn’t JUST a product; it’s a feeling. You’re future clients want to get to know YOU as well as your art. Be confident and modest, be kind but strong in your beliefs, and the people who are attracted to your light will find you.
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I’d like to thank my dear friend Malinda for accepting to allow me to interview her. Ever in great support of her, always. You can follow her amazing work on the links below;
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