March 10, 2009

Art-n-Sewl's Artist Appreciation

This is Deedra
aka FoxyBlue

The second artist I have interviewed is Deedra Levy. She is a fabulous artist and dear friend of mine. She is a Canadian artist who dabbles in a lot of mediums like myself. She paints and sews but her papier mache is absolutely amazing. It is not just lovingly sculpted but the painting of each piece makes her work really stand out.
This is one of my favorites:

Just look at how whimsical and magical this little bird is.

I Love these paintings she did. So intricate and colorful.

I am of course partial to this little beauty because I have a feisty red head :)

This is a piece she is working on right now. I think it is sooo amazing how she does the sculpting then painting.

Anyway, enjoy the interview and when you are done go check out her blog and Etsy shop.

What do you create?

I create whatever I feel like creating at the moment! lol In terms of arts, it's mostly papier mache, painting, and drawing. I also do lots of crafts (sewing, knitting, etc.)
How did you come up with your business name and does it have special meaning?

My business name (FoxyBlue) came about in Film School when we were asked to come up with a potential name for our respective production companies. My favourite colour is baby blue, and it sounded good with Foxy, so, alas, FoxyBlue was born!

When and why did you decide to be an artist?

I think this was something that was decided for me. It was my genetic gift! I've been pursuing it as a means of income, as of late, as a way to stay at home with my children.

Where do you find inspiration for your projects?

Inspiration can come from anywhere, really. And when that inspiration strikes, it consumes me. I can't think about anything except creating that work of art. I get so lost in what I'm doing. That's how I know that this is my raison d'etre.

What keeps you motivated and what can make you get in a artistic slump?

Hmmm...motivation. I guess that would be my children. If i don't make a go of this, I have to go back to work. It breaks my heart to think about that. What puts me in an artistic slump? Oh man...that's easy. When I have this fantastic idea and I make it and it doesn't work the way I'd planned. I get so frustrated and angry with myself. I am definitely my own worst enemy. These slumps are really hard on my soul.

What would be a dream project that you'd love to work on?

A dream project...good call. I'm sure there are many, but I can't think of any off-hand.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to be a full time artist?

I would say, be sure to have a supportive spouse with an income that can sustain you, because building your empire may take a while ;)

What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your art?

I'm totally self-taught. I mean, there was high school art classes, but no formal education. It all comes from within. I want people to find happiness and smiles in my work. I want my art to make them forget about their worries and think about magic. I love all things whimsical! And something else that is super cool was when Nancy Juvonen (Drew Barrymore's partner and co-owner of Flower Films) bought a painting of mine. I have always been a HUGE Drew fan, so knowing that she is privy to my art is really special to me.

What is the biggest lesson you have learned as an artist?

Something that I have definitely learned and made great use of is the lesson to keep on trying. Even if you just want to give up, keep trying. Sometimes, in the beginning, my art doesn't look how I want it to look, and I just feel like quitting, but I push myself and make myself finish it, and I'm usually (not always, of course) quite happy with the turn-out. I have learned to never give up. That's a BIG one for me, because I have a short fuse, and would get frustrated and quit. Not anymore.

If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?

I would LOVE to learn to weld. That would be awesome. I'd also love to own a kiln...although the cost to run it might be a bit much! lol

What's your definition of a perfect artistic day?

Silence!! With three kids running around, I don't get much of a chance to just bury my head and do my thing. Everything is ALWAYS so segmented. I would LOVE a me day to just immerse myself in my art without distractions!

Where do you see yourself in 5 years as an artist?

Because I believe in affirmations, I'm going to say, I see myself making a total sustainable income working from home as an artist.

What was the biggest influence on your talent. Who nurtured it and what can mothers do to nurture that in their children?

My mom and dad saw my potential as a very young child. Craft supplies were always in abundance. My Dad built me a little 'studio' in this little cubby under the stairs when I was six years old. It was my little haven. I loved having this place of my own. My parents were always fantastic when it came to my art. I feel very blessed to have that.

Deedra Levy

Thanks Dee !!

xoxo Emily


randa said...

HEY!!! That is so cool to feature such an awesome artist! I have bought, and own a few of Deedra's creations. LOVE THEM ALL!!!!

Emily Anne Leyland said...

She's good huh!! I love the doll she made Annabelle. I need to find a picture of that too. :)

Deedra said...

Thank you soooooooooooooo much Emily!!!! So great of you to do this :) You're just lovely, my friend!!!!!

Randa - thank you, as well :)

Emily Anne Leyland said...

No probs hun! You have so much talent and people need to see it. ;)

Kristina P. said...

She sounds amazing! What beautiful paintings!

Jami said...

I love the sweet little redhead too!

Emily Anne Leyland said...

Kristina- she is amazing and aren't the paintings wicked? :)

Jami-Isn't the doll sooooo sweet. She is a very talented lady to be able to do so many things so well.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

OMGOSH! I feel so lame-o and untalented and . . . lame-o whenever I come on here!

Great interview girlfriend. And beautiful art! So beautiful. Sooo sooo beautiful and original.

And I feel like a total lam-o.

Deedra said...

You all are so good for the ego!! lol I really appreciate all the comments :) Thank you so so much!!!

Deedra said...

You all are so good for the ego!! lol I really appreciate all the comments :) Thank you so so much!!!

Unknown said...

Crash you slly woman. You are soooooooooooooooo talented. You know what I would give to write like you??? The world, that's what :)

Emily Anne Leyland said...

oopsie- I was still in my husbands account. That was me that said that Crash hahahahaha

Deedra said...

lol Em...I thought it was Daniel saying that...I thought it was so sweet!!! But it's still nice coming from you! lol

Darci said...

How beautiful. Deedra is very talented and creates amazing art pieces. I'll be sure to check out her Etsy store.

Heather said...

great interview! Love her little birds, her work is so bright and sweet :)

Emily Anne Leyland said...

DArci- she is great huh? Plus...she is a great friend. Can't beat that :)

Heather- aren't her birds the cutest things. I want that little one with the hat haha.

Deedra said...

Thanks again everyone for the very kind words :) You all put such a smile on my face. If you want to see more of my sculptures, you can see some of my current and past works at

Alyson | New England Living said...

I love your artist interviews. They are so inspiring!

This artist has such a cool whimsical thing going for her and I love it!

Deedra said...

Ah, whimsy...that's music to my ears!! That's exactly what I'm going for. I love whimsy and all things magical :)

Emily is absolutely lovely to feature little old me like this. You really are, Em...ab fab ;)

Emily Anne Leyland said...

I know Aly, totally whimsical huh? She does really good work.
Dee I am so glad I could finally do this. You rock lady!!!

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Seriously it boggles my mind that people are honestly this creative and can do such incredible things our of paper and color and paints!!!

She's great...thanks!

Deedra said...

I can't tell you how much these compliments mean to me. Thank you all so much.