Small Business Saturday - Rebecca Clouatre
Happy Saturday everyone!
Back for another edition of Small Business Saturday! On Episode 2 we are excited to share with you an artist a little closer to home (for us here at Island Meadow Clay at least) here in Ottawa, Ontario. This week we are excited to introduce Rebecca Clouatre a paper collage artist.
We have been long time admirers of Rebecca's art ever since we came across her profile on instagram. I am so impressed with the intricateness of each piece and how unique each and every piece is. I could spend hours examining each piece and frame these works of art reside in.
We really hope you enjoy getting to know the face behind these beautiful works of art!
For your reading pleasure, here is, Rebecca Clouatre.
1) Tell us a little bit about your small business?
I run an independent, professional collage art practice. Primarily I make one-of-a-kind, original artworks that are available for purchase on my website, and occasionally I show my work at art festivals and galleries. I do commissions and commercial work as well, including album/book covers and business logos. I've organized a handful of collage workshops and artist talks, so teaching is also an enjoyable part of practice that I'd like to develop.
Every collage is hand-cut using found imagery I source from old books, magazines, encyclopedias...really anything paper-related. Almost all of my materials, including frames, are upcycled and reused. I really believe in the necessity of breathing new life into material that has otherwise been discarded or forgotten about, and providing new and surprising contexts and juxtapositions.
2) What is your favourite thing about your small business?
Having the freedom to focus so much attention on creativity on a day-to-day basis is something I try not to take for granted. It is not lost on me how fortunate I am to be working as a full-time artist. But perhaps the best aspect of my work is belonging to a strong and supportive community. The pandemic has emphasized - even more so than before - how vital it is to be part of a vibrant community that is constantly revealing its richness and generosity. I feel so lucky.
3) What is your small business’s origin story?
My art practice began very organically, from a personal space. After graduate school I found myself unemployed and, frankly, quite depressed. While I was job searching I decided to make small 3" x 4" collages every day for 150 days and post my progress daily on Instagram. My intention was purely a personal attempt to heal and exercise a part of my brain I felt I hadn't accessed in a long time. About half way through the project a popular art blogger named Danielle Krysa (aka. The Jealous Curator) saw my work and posted about it on her blog. Everything exploded from there - I gained more followers and people started asking if my work was for sale. I never thought about seriously becoming an artist or starting an art business - I am completely self-taught and my education is in English Studies and Art History - but it feels like I was meant to tread this path! I've never looked back.
My biggest and most exciting project I'm working on currently is a big solo exhibition for WKP Kennedy Gallery in North Bay next year. I am also revealing a few other exciting projects soon - stay tuned!
4) What are your best selling products?
I am known for my small and intricate work. I'd say my best selling works are my smaller pieces that measure 5" x 7" on average. Ocean and woodland animals seem to be most popular!
5) Why should people focus on buying small and local if possible?
There are so many reasons to support small and local businesses. One obvious reason is because anything you purchase locally will surely be one hundred times more unique than anything you can buy mass-produced (and better quality). When you buy something from a local business, you are connecting yourself to the plethora of honest hard work, talent and originality that should be consistently amplified anywhere you go. We are the hearts and souls of places.
I love Rebecca’s collages! I’m so happy you interviewed her!
Wow, so beautifully written! I loved reading Rebecca’s viewpoint, and her work looks fantastic!!