The Need To Create


The following is from an article in the Fresno Bee:

“The Need To Create”

The need to be artistic and create has always been part of me. From the time I was a little girl I would draw, cut paper into random shapes and sculpt with homemade play dough. With love, our parents were always focused on making ends and we were not exposed to art but there was always fresh flowers arrangements and experiential cooking in our home, thus a creative household.

My first art memory is being recognized for my artist abilities in sixth grade and selected for summer classes at the Fresno Art Museum.

Professionally art has always been a part of my business world. As a 20 something interior designer, I placed original paintings in client’s homes as the focal point and purchased my first original painting from watercolor artist, Milli Pepper. As an event designer, painting a Beetles mural to establish the parties theme is satisfying. As an artist/designer it’s a huge lift to place “my” painting with clients.

Another artist said once told me “I need to pick a subject and paint and re-paint that same subject for two years in order to grow as an artist”. If that theory makes a successful artist, I have failed. I dislike repeating anything.

My style is whatever I can dream up. I love to experiment with color, textures, and non-conventional materials. My art is abstract fun, contemporary bold color, transitional and playful, all mixed together.

“Artist techniques” are learned processes only limited by a lack of imagination.

Where do you find inspiration?

Inspiration is anywhere and everywhere; fall leaves changing color, a Ziploc bag of broken crayons, a SpaghettiOs advertisement in a Women’s Circle Magazine have all became paintings.

How do you feel about the arts in Fresno? In particular, what impacts do you think it has on the community and why?

The art world in Fresno is inherently contradictory. In this difficult economy the number of ArtHop venues has grown, yet attendance is often slim. While ArtHop grows, local museums close and struggle. If the struggling ArtHop artist and Fresno Art Museum could work on a collaborative show, doors would open for both the artist and the museum.

Recently speaking with an art broker in Los Angeles, she was well aware of the Fresno community interest and support of ArtHop’s. is an outstanding resource for the consumer and artist. Artist working with The City of Fresno on revitalization of the downtown Fresno is an outstanding partnership.

What I tried to tell the students: “Art” is so much more than the pretty picture of the wall…. Its marketing, business, sales, displays, presentation…it’s what draws us to one store rather than another, its what makes us select one type packaging over another at the grocery store and art helps you select your wardrobe for the day. The business executive is going to look at the visually pleasing presentation first and longer, over the dull, factual one.

“Art” simply put is what draws you in and enriches your life in ways that we don’t even process.

Joel Holdbrooks
Online Project Integrator, Fresno Bee