We had the good fortune of connecting with Aimee Ollinger and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Aimee, why did you pursue a creative career?
Pursuing this career was essential because if I didn’t my life would have felt unfulfilled. Creating art is just who I am. When I create a piece that brings someone joy, there really is no better feeling than that. People have questioned me with, “Well that’s great that you got a degree in fine art, but how are you going to make enough money to live?” Hearing this question over and over has definitely made me second guess my career choice. However, I realized that it is okay to have a day job while continuing and advancing my art career. I have faith that if I work hard enough I could one day survive off my art. Even if I don’t become a super famous artist, the career path I have taken so far has genuinely made me a happy person. I truly do love being an artist!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
A controlled chaos is the best way to describe my style. My inspiration stems from multiple areas of nature. I acknowledge all layers, for example at a microscopic and macroscopic perspective, with the hint of a landscape composition. My work would be categorized as mixed media. Color, pattern and texture play a huge role in each piece I create. I have researched the human body, looked into the depths of the ocean, and studied rock formations and botanicals. With all the information I have gathered, this is my abstracted interpretation. I believe the one thing that sets me apart from most artists is I pay attention to every single detail in my subject matter. I observe every line, wrinkle, color, texture, movement, and sound nature has to offer to best express that through my work. I am most proud of never giving up on my art after I graduated college. Even though I still have a lot of growing to do as an artist, I am glad to be part of that group that continues creating and advancing in the art field. I believe I am where I am today professionally because I had the good fortune to attend an accredited art school, nurture wonderful connections with people in the art community, and keep up with promoting my work through social media and other platforms. It has not been an easy journey. The strategy is to continuously have a set goal in mind and stay motivated. Some major challenges I’ve had to overcome are my introverted personality and self-doubt, which I of course still encounter at times. Lessons I have learned along the way is to never stop creating, don’t compare, time management is everything, listen to advice of successful people, and don’t be afraid to ask for help! The thing I love most about the Arizona art community is many people are so supportive of each other. When I have a chance to help someone I don’t hesitate. What I want the world to know about my work is to appreciate the nature around us at a deeper level. With all the rubbish that goes on in everyday life, use my work as an escape and enter a world you never knew existed.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
We would do things all over! Drink coffee at Lux Central and Grand Coffee. Have breakfast at Matts Big Breakfast (Biltmore location!) On Saturday morning we would walk around the Downtown Phoenix Farmers Market. I would get tickets for us to see a show at The Van Buren. Give them tours around the Phoenix Art Museum, Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art and other wonderful galleries all around. Can’t forget the Botanical Gardens. Karaoke at The Grapevine. Eat at Taco Guild, Carlsbad Tavern, Cornish Pasty, Tacos Huicho, Welcome Diner, and YC’s. See a movie at FilmBar. Dessert would be at The Sugar Bowl. Have a late night out at Valley Bar and Stardust Pinbar. Get our shopping in at Buffalo Exchange, Antique Trove and Curious Nature. Take a day trip to Prescott and roam around the town square. Ending it off with a beautiful hike at Dreamy Draw.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
If it weren’t for my parents I would not be where I am today AT ALL. They have always and will always support me being an artist. They are the coolest people I know and I love them. There are so many other people who have shown me encouragement and mentorship along the way, but the list would be too long.