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Art & Life with Jenna Carlie

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jenna Carlie.

Jenna, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I am originally from Saint Louis Missouri but have lived all over the place. I moved around a lot in High School due to some turbulent things that occurred in my life. Because of my past, I am especially focused on women’s issues and finding ways to empower women through art and visual messages. I knew in high school that I wanted to attend an Art College, but my parents did not approve. So instead, I went to study Political Science at Loyola Marymount University (LMU), where I studied for a little over two years. Until one day I just couldn’t take it anymore and realized it was time to pursue my career as an artist even though I had no support from anyone. I dropped out of LMU and moved to Paris for nearly two years to begin exploring the world of art, to find myself as an artist and develop a photographic portfolio to apply to art schools. Then I moved back to the States to complete my college education, I transferred into Rhode Island School of Design where I obtained my BFA in fine art and photography. During my time at RISD, I was able to intern with various photographers which helped me understand how to apply my art skills in the real world. My favorite internship was with Annie Leibovitz, I learned a lot about how one fails and succeeds in the art world. Now I am living in Los Angeles doing freelance photography work.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I make photographic work about places, people’s stories and women’s issues. I am a huge believer in education, people must be taught about issues that need changing in order for change to occur. My goal is to bring up women’s issues in my art, raise awareness, start a conversation and push for change. I primarily focus on the portrayal of women in media and the expectations placed on women by both media and society. My aim is to diversify media, break down social constructs, give exposure to varying types of people with different backgrounds, experiences, abilities and appearances. To create a healthier, more inclusive media, where people can talk about their stories and opinions, generate light for topics not openly discussed and have their voices heard.

Recently I have been focusing on building sets and incorporating symbolism into my work, to create a more abstract scene and to communicate messages in a more indirect/interpretive way. I am also very interested in collaborating with other artists. I feel when multiple creative minds work together something very magical happens, not only between the artists who are creating together but also between the audience and the final art piece.

Any advice for aspiring or new artists?
My Advice for other artists is to immerse yourself in a community with other creatives. I cannot express how much other creatives have helped me grow. You have to be willing to show your work to others and get feedback, whether it is harsh or nice, all feedback helps you grow and evolve as an artist. Also, don’t be afraid to share your work anywhere at any time. You have to be able to talk about your work and you never know who might be interested and who might be the connection you need. It is really hard to be an artist and a lot of times fear will stop us from pursuing something. I have learned that dictating your life based on fear is the worst way to live and a slow way to succeed. When I took chances and risks and failed, I still learned. Sometimes failing teaches us more than succeeding does, don’t be scared to try because you’re in fear of failure, every experience is a lesson waiting to be learned.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
They can see my work on my website and my Instagram @jenna.carlie

People can support my work by telling others about my art and my purpose. People can also help by reaching out to me if they are interested in collaborating, being a part of one of my projects or if they need a photographer. I am also relatively new to LA and always looking to meet new people, reach out to me if you’d like to connect!

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Jenna Carlie

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