Featured Member: Martha Rodriguez
October 18, 2010
October 18, 2010
Name: Martha RodriguezWebsite: http://www.missionartistsunited.org/artists/estudiomartita
On ArtBistro: Estudio Martita
Etsy Shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/estudiomartita
Location: San Francisco
What is your art/design profession? I call myself an urban folk artist.
What was your career path leading up to your current profession/title? Worked in the field of Public Health for many years, then went through a major career change as a sales representative of contemporary jewelry. Became a full time Mom and began doing art projects in the schools relating to Day of the Dead and other Latino / Mexican related subjects.
What do you enjoy most about your profession? I enjoy the flexibility, the freedom to create and the comraderie among artists.
Tell us about “The Moment” when you knew you had to be an artist/ designer/your current profession. What was the experience like for you? It was a rather heart breaking experience. I lost a friend to a violent death. She was a great inspiration for me in that she overcame many hardships in her life to become a successful owner of a hair salon. When I lost her, I felt her “gift” to me was to not fear taking chances. I felt that she showed me life was too short. If you want to be an artist, work hard and fearlessly.
Did you study art/design in school? If so, tell us about your degrees and certifications and what you liked most about school. Absolutely not! I have a B.A. in Social Welfare from U.C. Berkeley. Berkeley was a huge school with a diverse student population and expansive education alternatives.
What/who are your artistic inspirations? I love contemporary Chicano / Latino artists like Patssi Valdez, Ester Hernandez and Rio Yanez. I am also in awe of the work of Frida Kahlo as well as the Mexican Muralists of the 1920’s and 1930’s.
What project are you most proud of? I suppose I’m most proud of the work I did in my children’s schools on Day of the Dead. The kids, all of them, were hungry for information. They were so receptive to the altar building, the books I read to them on Day of the Dead and making sugar skulls of course.
How/where do you sell your art? (i.e. Etsy, agent, gallery, etc.) If you do not currently sell your art, where would you try selling first? I currently sell on Etsy, Latin Pop Shop and Nest. I also sell my work at open studios organized through my building at 1890 Bryant in San Francisco. In addition, I do a few arts and crafts fairs particularly around Dia de los Muertos and the December holidays.
What do you wish someone had told you when you were starting your art career? There are no mistakes to be made when creating. You are a work in progress. If you must doubt, go for it then get over it and keep on working hard. Strive to always improve and always be open to learning.
View Her Solo Show: Hipsta-Veras