Minda Bachelor is a multi-talented artist living in Jacksonville, FL. I first met Minda at an art-swap and paper making event hosted by Local Artists Coming Together (LACT). Since then, I’ve had the opportunity to not only see many of her lovely works of art, but to also witness their creation while learning the art of Pysanky egg decorating from her. By day, Minda is an educator, so teaching is second nature to her. Coupling that with her love of creating art in all forms makes her a rich resource for other artists and an ideal subject for an interview:
Sorianna Choate: Out of all the arts and crafts you do, which is your favorite?
Minda Bachelor: Pen and ink.
I like dipping the pen nib into a color and seeing it glide across the paper. I like the wet look it has even when it's dry and that when it's dry, you can feel the raised ink on the paper.
Sorianna: All right, When did you first put pen to paper realize you were in love?
Minda: When I was in elementary school, my mother held art classes in our basement in Michigan. One of the projects we worked on was a pen and ink drawing. Every time we worked on it, I enjoyed the look and feel of the ink on the page.
In sixth grade, one of my Christmas gifts was a calligraphy pen. I studied the book that came with it until I mastered all of the lettering. Then I created my own fonts and by 8th grade I was getting paid to create "Jane love's John" in calligraphy for all of my classmates.
Sorianna: What is your favorite subject to draw?
Minda: Animals, any and all animals.
Sorianna: Animals have transitioned into many facets of your work do you have favorite medium for using them in?
Minda: No, I actually don't. I like to try new things all the time. I've created animals in clay, pen and ink, paint, crayon, graphite, cut paper, soft sculpture, yarn, batik on Pysanky eggs and I'm still looking for new ways to create! Oh, and plaster, too
Sorianna: Can you tell me about the other types of art you create?
Minda: Which ones?
Sorianna: Batik, pysnaky which ever, since you are multi talented
Minda: One of my favorite ways to create is Pysanky. This is an ancient Ukranian artform of batiking on eggs. The legend says that as long as women continue to create them, the world will go on. To make a Pysanky egg, first the egg is emptied out. The egg is washed with vinegar to remove any oils or fingerprints. Then the holes are sealed with wax. Anything that is to remain white is covered with beeswax using a special tool called a kistka. The egg is then dipped into permanent dye. After each color, beeswax is used to cover up more of the egg in a layered design. At the very end of the process, all of the wax is removed to reveal the permanently colored egg. They are traditionally given as gifts for weddings, new babies, birthdays, etc. I find that most people like to have them out as decorations at Easter time, and that they also make wonderful Christmas ornaments.
Sorianna: Love when you talk about Pysanky.
Sorianna: If you only do one type of art what would you choose and why?
Minda: Graphite sketching
It gives me the most freedom and I can portray things realistically which always makes me happy.
My sister has been begging me to do more graphite sketches. It's on my Art to-do list.
Sorianna: Who has been the most influential person, on you as an artist and why?
Minda: My mother is my biggest influence. Her artwork has always filled the homes I've lived in. I remember the smell of oils and acrylics in our basement as I walked down the steps. There were always people coming in for art classes and I was thrilled when she started teaching one that my sister and I could join, as well. Throughout my childhood and on, we were always doing artwork with her, or as examples for her art classes when she started teaching art at a middle school.
You can check out more of her amazing work here::