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Life & Work with Annie Wolk

Today we’d like to introduce you to Annie Wolk.

Hi Annie, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
A few years ago, while I was living in Chicago, I was looking for a personalized Christmas gift for my parents and I stumbled across hand-painted homes doing a Google search. I realized after seeing all of the options, why not try to create one myself? Inspired, I bought some paint and paper and created a watercolor piece of my childhood home and was really happy about the outcome!

Shortly after this, I moved to California with my boyfriend where I then decided to really immerse myself in this hobby to keep myself occupied while getting acclimated to the West Coast. That was the beginning of The AW Collective. I explored YouTube and Instagram and fully immersed myself by painting for hours-on-end until I finally found my style and inspiration into my paintings.

Finding inspiration in my new home was easy, as everything here in the West Coast captivates me the moment I walk outside! I am truly surrounded by endless inspiration that I then turn into my own creations through my paintings. Once Covid hit, I got furloughed from my day job and decided it was the perfect opportunity to turn my love of art into a business! I opened an Etsy page and made connections with other South Bay local creatives. This allowed me to be extremely active in the local community where I have been fortunate enough to be a vendor in many South Bay Pop-ups.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
What a great question! The most challenging aspect has been pushing the GO button on what I’ve been holding back on for so long. Will my work be a success? Will people gravitate toward what I do? Will they see the beauty that I do? Questions like that and an array of thoughts ran through my mind in the beginning of this journey. But I kept at it because the reward is bigger than the risk – no matter the outcome.

My love is art and being able to share my pieces with the world is not only vulnerable but beautiful and humbling. Some days and some events are better than others, but it is all about connecting with others that is the true beauty behind it all.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I create and sell original watercolor paintings. When people view my artwork, they see what I call colorful bohemian, with a tropical flare. I believe human nature and our earthly surroundings should be celebrated in all of its forms and colors.

The fluidity of watercolor and knowing that each piece, no matter how similar, will have its own flare and originality from the watercolor process itself is what I pride myself on. I sell only original, one of a kind pieces and no two are alike. I would say that sets me apart from others as well… knowing you own a special piece of art that will stay with you for years to come and be passed down to future generations is what makes me extremely happy.

Alright, so to wrap up, is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
You can shop my original art pieces on my Etsy page, and you can follow along on my Instagram to see some behind the scenes action and to find out which local pop-up event I’ll be at next!

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