Updated: Sep 17, 2022
Hi, Lisa. Welcome and thank you for agreeing to talk on The Breathing Room. You and I both recently participated in Lisa Mann’s Fine Art Eight-Week online intensive class called Courage, Connection and Creativity. Tell me about yourself.
When I was 13, I was given a good ol’ Nikon F. I took it everywhere and mostly photographed in black and white. I’ll never forget the argument I had with my father when it was time to go to college. I wanted to be a photographer and he’d said I wouldn’t be able to support myself. I should get a degree that will allow me to earn enough money to support my “hobby”. I listened and became an accountant, like him and his father. He wasn’t wrong and I have no regrets. While working as an accountant in New York City. I studied photography at Pratt. I also explored many other artistic outlets: owning a pottery studio, trying stained glass and recently painting, which I absolutely love. The funny thing about painting is that my grandmother, her sister and their dad (my great grandfather) were all artists. I waited until I was 56 years old to pick up a paintbrush! I can’t put to words the passion I have for this medium. I try to paint every day, mostly at night after work. It soothes my soul and makes me feel whole.
What inspires your art?
It’s really been quite an interesting journey I’ve been on. I’ve had a lot of life experiences that have made me who I am today. I don’t say that lightly. While I am a CFO for a nonprofit organization, I have lived on a coffee plantation in Oaxaca Mexico; I was a bookkeeper and chef for a mining camp in the Yukon Canada; I lived in a motor home and tried gold mining; and, more recently I drove across country alone, camping out of my jeep. When I paint, I don’t have a solid idea in my head of what I want it to be or to look like. It simply emerges from the paper or the canvas. It is magical.
Lisa, what can you share about selling and/or promoting your art?
That’s a great question and I don’t know that I have all the answers. I have set up my own website at AuerbachArt.com. While it is great for showcasing both my art and my photography, I have found that many people also like prints. I work with a company called Pictorem to fulfill those orders. People can order prints on metal, wood and canvas. If anyone want an original or a custom piece, they can contact me directly through my site. I’m using Facebook and Instagram advertising to see how that can help drive customers to my website. I had my first art show in September and I had prints for sale at the opening reception. I ended up selling more prints than original art pieces that night. I have a few more ideas up my sleeve such as greeting cards. It’s a work in progress.
What do you want others to know about creativity that is often overlooked?
I’ve mentioned a few times that I am an artist and an accountant. I’ve always felt divided down the middle. I have my creative self and my accounting self. What I’ve realized is that I am a creative soul, 100%. That’s who I am and it doesn’t matter which hat I wear. I live my life with passion and creativity. It took a long time to figure this out; I’m sharing it because there will be times in your life when you feel like you need to put your “creativity” on hold for a job or to make ends meet. Continue being creative. Do something little every day to keep the curiosity and creativity alive!
—Amanda L. Mottorn, an emerging creative is author of Finding Moksha: One Woman’s Path in Uncertain Times and Artist at Modern Moksha Designs & Publishing.
—Interview written by Amanda L. Mottorn, © 2022, author of Finding Moksha: One Woman’s Path in Uncertain Times and Artist at Modern Moksha Designs & Publishing.