Our community is home to many talented vendors, including Livin' Creatin'. This vendor combines illustration and lettering to create personalized stickers and prints. We asked the owner of Livin' Creatin', Nadine Melano about her inspiration and the SELA art community.
Q: What inspired you to start Livin' Creatin'?
A: "In 2018, I started Livin' Creatin' as a way to express myself, send positive messages through my art and used it as healthy outlet from the struggles I was going through as a chronically ill young adult. Livin' Creatin' started as a message about enjoying living and creating through the journey. Then my family, friends, and people from my community found it inspiring and motivated me to go further. I decided to attend art events and absolutely loved it. That's when I decided to create an online shop for LivinCreatin, and I hope to continue moving forward in my journey."
Q: What's your favorite product and why?
A: "My favorite product would be my print and stickers, they express the positive messages I try and send in a fun way for everyone to enjoy, look at, and feel inspired."
Q: Why are events like SELA Arts Fest important to vendors and the community?
A: "As an aspiring artist and crafter I love what I do, but growth and exposure is not easy, which is why art events like SELA Arts Fest are so important. I'm a first-generation college student, and like many other artists, we work hard towards our future in different ways. Art is something we love and strive to do more of and appreciate art events like SELA Arts Fest that help support that. We find inspiration in each other and that builds us stronger; it helps us see our strengths through art and look beyond our struggles."
For more info, follow Livin' Creatin' on Instagram.
Valiant Vixen Art
Another SELA vendor, Valiant Vixen Art, creates surrealist stickers, art prints, and jewelry. Valiant Vixen Art owner, Jessica Lopez, is inspired by cartoons, dark surrealism, and the work Edgar Allen Poe.
Q: Where do you find creative inspiration?
A: "I feel that nature, poetry, personal experiences, and questioning life overall have definitely contributed to my creativity. Other times, I just get random creativeness with things around me. For example, I was eating an ice cream cone one time and I saw the shape of a little cartoony face in the ice cream. That led me to create my cartoony digital design, "Mr. Vanilla." My creativity can be dormant for months and then out of nowhere, I get a lightning bolt of inspiration and willingness to create."
Q: Why Valiant Vixen?
A: "It's a reminder for myself. I want to be brave and determined all the time and some days I feel like I am! I wanted a name that stood for and represents the different parts of my character. Vixen can have different definitions, but for me, it is defined as someone who is spirited. I feel that when creating and coming up with new things, I always have this flow of wanting to do better for myself. Overall, I am glad that I chose the name because I feel that there's a lot more meaning to the name now than just a description of who I am."
Q: Why is art important to our community?
A: "It can bring people together while sharing stories. Individuals can connect with others and share their own experiences. Art is a form of storytelling and the message behind each painting, sculpture, or any piece of art can make an impact on individuals for a lifetime."
For more info, follow Valiant Vixen Art on Instagram.
(Photos at far left, top to bottom: Fun sticker from Livin' Creatin; Valiant Vixen Art earrings made in collaboration with Muy Mimi jewelry)