One absolute delight is checking Instagram for the works of @koloristik aka Gabrielle Heckenbucker. Her watercolor pieces are vibrant, rich-toned, and dreamy.
Her artwork stands on its own, but it’s also matched by her generosity of spirit. I am pleased to present a behind the scenes look at artist and friend, Gabrielle Heckenbucker.
How did you discover your blogging/business niche?
I’m trained as a color consultant and have made many color designs in the past. I had my own company which opened up a new world to me. It was like a stage where I could represent myself and the way I worked.
Giving workshops and lectures gave me the opportunity to be out in public to connect. Nowadays the internet is where I connect with like-minded people. Especially Instagram, it’s a wonderful world out there!
Did you always have an idea of what you wanted to do?
I grew up in a creative environment, where creativity in many forms, was encouraged. ‘Making things’ was handed to me and has always been a big part of my life.
I have always wanted to go to art school, but being an introvert and feeling very insecure kept me from doing that. Instead, I got on the hunt for a way to ‘fulfill my life’, whatever that meant…. All of it was avoidance behavior.
In the meantime, I never gave up on painting. Nowadays, my color consultancy has made room for painting and illustrating every day.
What about your craft/biz sets you apart?
I think and see in colors. I’ve always been influenced by color. This phenomenon has been a big point of interest throughout my life.
I started to study and research color. Parallel, I painted and color became a big part of my paintings. I can start with neutrals, but I’ll always end up in colorful and vibrant work. I don’t think about it, I stay true to myself and I just create from the heart.
Who inspires you creatively?
I’m constantly inspired by the beauty of the mundane, as in nature, evaluating creations, reading, looking through magazines, collecting lovely scraps of paper, doodles, a still life, flowers, animals or listening to my favorite music.
I love musing about all sorts of creative thoughts that wander in my mind, my inspiration will be transformed into an idea immediately and a new creation is born.
Who makes you think, “they just get me?”
That would be my family and supportive friends on social media. And you LeAnn, for making this possible on your website.
Being a creative entrepreneur, what have you learned the most about yourself and about freelancing that you feel is important to share with others?
Being self-taught has learned me lots of things. As an introvert, I needed to overcome my fear to step into the world and share my work with others. For this, I needed to come out of my comfort zone.
There’s never an excuse to not create. Follow your heart, listen to, and believe in yourself. Experiment a lot and create every day. Express what you’re passionate about and what moves you. There is no such thing as mistakes, as long as it is your passion you are on the right way. And most of all, be gentle with yourself.
What would you like to explore with your art that you haven’t tapped into yet?
Painting is a non-stop process which surprises me every day. There are so many things to explore, it’s a big world, and I’ll let me guide the process.
What has been your biggest challenge with your creative endeavors and how did you overcome them?
There are times when I was a master in procrastinating. I could watch and admire other artists hoping for the right moment for me to start. I had a hard time overcoming my fear and self-doubt. Then, one day I made an agreement with myself to sit at my desk and to draw every day. That has never stopped since then and I still feel grateful for it.
How do you find work/life balance when you are feeling overwhelmed?
When I feel overwhelmed, I step back and browse my older sketches and journals. They are like stories to me and show me that I’ve grown, every day a little bit more. It reassures me that making art is a never ending process which will always be a part of my life. Or I can walk away and come back later with a new perspective and/or insight.
What is a typical day in the life of like?
I always feel strongly connected to nature and I’m influenced by my environment and the surroundings I live in. My desk in front of the window is my favorite place to be.
First thing in the morning I take my seat there with my coffee and can stare outside and soak up the atmosphere. Only then I start my daily painting, I allow myself to paint anything and explore without a goal.
I don’t have a schedule, but I paint, draw in the mornings when my mind is still clear and not cluttered with daily errands. Later I answer emails and go on social media to connect with.
What are your go-to hashtags for your niche?
That would be #makearteveryday just because it symbolizes my aim 🙂
Many creatives can relate to the inspiration of imagery, color, nature, and introversion. Sharing our talents, as Gabrielle has shared hers, is a service to the creative community. I am so fortunate to have gotten to know not just the work of the creatives, but of the creatives themselves.
Getting to know Gabrielle, I have known nothing but support and kindness of heart matched with equally as beautiful brushstrokes. Please visit Gabrielle on Instagram via @koloristik to view more of her vibrant, watercolor artwork.
If you enjoyed this blog post, please share! I am always looking for artists and other creatives to feature. You can follow me here on WordPress and on Instagram @ljbrod (photography account for home, blog, and brand) and @sweetsnsnarks for updates about the blog as well as tips, tricks, and musings.
Thank you, Gabrielle, for taking the time to share your art and your process!