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Meet Nichole McDaniel

Today we’d like to introduce you to Nichole McDaniel.

Nichole, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My story starts over 1,700 miles away in a town of that few have likely heard of, Hebron, Indiana. Growing up, I developed a connection to nature, easy to do when there are few people around in a town of only 3,500. This connection to nature would become engrained in my mind and translate into my actions. These early childhood memories are reflected into my work, with detailed silhouettes that showcase attention to detail via countless hours of hand cut materials. A common theme in my work is to extrapolate the beauty in every scenario and share that beauty with others. Throughout my life, I have always tried to see the good in people, even when times are tough. Working my way through college, I learned the value of positivity and seeing things through to completion, evidenced by graduating top of my class. There is beauty in the struggle on the way to one’s ultimate destination, with love and happiness being the driving force. The small-town girl who once dreamed of expanding is now living in southern California, with enough positivity and happiness to make her Hollywood dreams become a reality.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
The road to where I am today has been anything but seamless. There is a sense of comfort in detailing my struggles, not to be seen as a victim but as a cathartic measure to alleviate the pain of the past. I moved to California with a longtime friend from high school and his boyfriend. Our collective plan was to open an art gallery in Newport Beach. What could be more exciting? Pursuing my dreams while taking on the financial risk and weight of being an entrepreneur – swinging for the fences and putting myself out there. As it would turn out, I was the only one who truly wanted this goal to come to fruition. The friend who I moved here with, someone who I and my family had known for many years, used the investment money that I had provided for the business for his own personal spending.

This was accompanied by identity theft for my family and myself, severely damaging our credit and seemingly putting a halt to my dreams of opening up my own art gallery. The effects of this were felt for years, both personally and monetarily. I still have yet to be requited for the funds given to him. The lesson learned from this event is that the things no one can take away from you are what you come to experience and feel, they are not material items. Emotions, laughter, and love are what I’ve found carry the most weight in my life. A puffy cloudy day, a vacation where you walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, or a sunny day on a California beach. The connection of love and emotion help to attenuate the struggles I have experienced in my life, which is why these themes are so important in my artwork today.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
Nichole McDaniel Art focuses on mixed medium pieces with a connection to nature, love, and happiness. My work includes attention oriented, detailed silhouettes that blend technical craftsmanship with artistic creativity. My earliest fascinations were of silhouettes, inspired by the sun’s interaction with the horizon and an appreciation for the beauty of naturally occurring shadows. My artwork utilizes a balance of organic and architectural lines. I take interest in the way waves crash upon a pier and how trees play into a cityscape. Reverting back to my initial connection to nature as a child, my work often showcases locations I have traveled. Whether visiting a far off country or visiting a pier with my family, my artwork is a reflection of my journey in highly detailed form. As a company and an entrepreneur, I am most proud of my persistence. Persistence not only to the perfection of my pieces but to making myself known. Successful people take the actions unsuccessful people will not, although this can be scary at times. I feel this is what sets me apart from others. I am grateful to have surrounded myself with an uplifting and inspiring community of like-minded individuals and am excited for what is to come.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
A future plan that I am looking forward to is expanding my business nationally and internationally. I will be participating in the 19th Japan International Art Exchange Exhibition this coming November. The event is held in Tokyo, Japan and will be my first time visiting the country. I am excited for the experience and for the opportunity to meet so many talented artists from around the world. The picturesque surroundings and history of the culture are sure to inspire. In this exhibition, I will showcase photography from past travel taking the viewer with me on my journey. In the past, I have used photography as an inspiration for my mixed medium art. Moving forward, I intend to expand into photography as a part of my brand.

Currently, I am further developing my Abstracts and a Tree Portrait Series. My Abstracts represent the reflections of the ocean, beach and sky. While my Tree Portrait Series captures the unique structure of an individual tree. Lots of fun details to come with these projects, including working with charities that relate to the subject matter of the work.

I am continually looking for new opportunities to connect and grow locally and internationally. I hope to network with many talented artists, assist in the art community by educating others, and collaborate on any fun or new projects.

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