Earlier this year we hosted illustrator and Artist Fellow, Lizzie Christian at Getaway Kettle River outside of Minneapolis so she could disconnect from the noise and reconnect to nature. Here’s what she had to say about her escape, her connection to nature, and her creative process.
I’m an introvert from Minneapolis and I come from a very artistic family; I think becoming an artist was unavoidable (in a good way!) In college I studied art, child psychology, and French, and eventually spent a 7 month period teaching English in France. Around this time I started attending soul music dance nights in Minneapolis, and eventually started collecting records myself, and even DJing. I also attended grad school for a Masters in early childhood education and special education, and taught special ed in Minneapolis for 3 years. After leaving teaching, I played around with printmaking and fell in love. I spent 6 years as a nanny, and alongside, slowly grew Rare Press, my small business. In 2021 I was able to go full time with my art. For me, this includes making pieces and selling in my online shop, as well as teaching workshops and doing various commissions. It’s been quite a whirlwind, and I’m grateful for the experiences that have shaped my current self and my creative existence.
Nature, the outdoors, is an ever present source of calm. Anytime I feel cooped up in my small workspace, I go for a short walk, and it clears my mind immediately. It lets me step away from whatever I’m working on, and just process what’s happening. Then when I come back to a project, I can explore it with fresh eyes.
Our getaway was wonderful. During our stay, we had some very intense winds and thunderstorms, and the little cabin felt safe and very cozy. Sometimes for me, inspiration takes awhile to marinate. So while I didn’t experience a mindblowing new idea on the trip, the experience may come back to me later and influence a piece of art. Or I might remember that feeling of loud rain hitting the roof and that might inspire an emotion that leads to a new piece.