Today’s featured artist is Mindy from Color Bakery. Mindy has some powerful words for us, be prepared to be inspired!
Why are you passionate about color?
I think that color creates a juxtaposition of conflicting behavior. What I mean by that is that, in my custom tile business, I get very involved with designing custom home decor projects for my customers. People who are
very drawn to vivid, rich color—the very reason they stopped long enough to look at our website—are still, to a large degree, unwilling to bring the same color that delights and entrances them into their own personal space.
The biggest mistake people make when it comes to choosing art for their homes–whether it’s a piece of wall decor or a tile backsplash–is that they are more concerned with matching their color scheme than they are in choosing art that truly expresses them, that makes their hearts soar every time they look at it. Why pick a piece of art because it matches your counter-top? It’s *art*, it’s supposed to match your soul, not your carpet. I personally believe that color has powerful healing and emotional properties. They’ve already done studies with the effects of certain color on people (pink soothes, red and yellow together make you want to leave the fast food restaurant and not linger), but I am talking about real healing. I believe one day we’ll have color healing machines that work with light. No, I’m not a new age nut. I simply believe this utterly.
What got you started with color and tile murals and being creative as a hobby/business?
I had developed an art following over the years, and my husband and I were looking for a good way to offer my art to customers. Paper prints didn’t excite us, it seemed so limited. So we learned about custom tile manufacturing, got the equipment, and dived in blindly. But we also opened Color Bakery for other artists, as well. We know that options for artists to get their work manufactured on beautiful products are pretty limited. As an artist, I understood the frustrations of artists to get their work out there, to develop a product line that they could be proud of. And the much vaunted Cafe Press, which was the main show in town seven years ago, just rips artists off. They made me mad, so I wanted to be the master of my own ship. Ultimately, my husband and I wanted to give the control back to artists and offer them something they could be proud to show their customers. So it was just as much about them as it was about me.
What is your favorite mural you’ve designed?
I would have to say it was a stained glass art mural that we actually printed on ceramic tile. It was “1922”, a very ornate art nouveau piece from our Stained Glass Gallery, which looked amazing on ceramic tile. It was the size that was so cool, it was nine feet wide. It’s my favorite because it looked so lovely, and it was a challenge to do a mural that big. (Check it out here, about 1/2 way down)
Why do you like working with tiles?
Oh, I love tiles. Unlike paper or canvas, they are tactile. They *feel* good when you touch them. And the tile finish can add so much depth to the art on it. Most of all, the applications of tile are incredible–you can line your walls, your floors with tile; you can make stunning clocks and trays from tile. And tile furniture! We can customize tile and make the most mouth-watering coffee tables! Limitless, just limitless. In fact, few people ever really consider tile when they buy art. They’re in a paper head, or they think canvas is their only option. Tile blows canvas away–not only is it richer and three dimensional, it’s also more sturdy and it won’t tear, rip or get washed out the way canvas will. A tile mural can transform a room…a mural can be as big as you want, even twenty feet! Paper or canvas can’t do that. And customizing tile–making someone’s dream come alive on a tile floor, for example—is beyond exciting. Most people don’t know that they can have a floor with custom art on it, that they are not limited to the cliche stuff that everyone is stuck with at the tile store. Sturdy, gorgeous, and unlimited applications—you can’t beat tile for any of it.
What exciting future plans do you have for your work?
Right now I am spread pretty thin, as I have recently become licensed and am designing work for manufacturers to print on mass produced items such as tabletop, fabric, area rugs, etc. Between that and Color Bakery, my plate is full. I do know that the art business is full of surprises. So I would imagine I might be doing something in a few years from now that I never dreamed of. Color Bakery, in the seven years we’ve been in business, has morphed into something totally different than we started with. The best laid plans are usually overruled by the universe, and I look forward to seeing where the art brings us 🙂
I’ve always loved tiles, and I think that Mindy (and her husband Glen) are doing an amazing service to both the art world and other artists. Keep up the good work guys!