Transcript Ep 10 Soul Fueled Art with Pamela J. Bates

Pamela 0:00 And get art into people's hands because my mission is to share the radical joy of soul fueled art right to seek, find and share the radical joy of soul fueled art and I cannot do that if the art is sitting in my studio.

Kellee 0:26 You're listening to Unfold with Kellee Wynne this is an unpolished, imperfect and totally honest podcast and I'm talking to all the artists, creatives, visionaries, and changemakers who want to live a life by design and not by default. If you're ready to have thought provoking eye opening and heart centred conversations that explore the stories that made us who we are, and break through the boundaries of expectations, then you are in the right place.

Kellee 0:55 Well, hello, hello. Welcome back to Unfold with Kellee Wynn. I am so thrilled that you're still with me here. Episode 10. Already Can you believe it? I'm excited to introduce to you a longtime Instagram friend and collaborator, Pamela J. Bates. She has worked with me both on my previous membership programme true colours and the Virtual Art summit from 2020. I've always found her artwork so fascinating and inspired because I know that it comes from her soul. You're going to enjoy this episode because we're going to dive into what lights her up, how she found her voice, and how standing in front of famous work of art El. Jaleo, by John Singer Sargent at the Isabel Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, was like turning on a light switch for her. And I knew this story because she's talked about it several times before on her Instagram. So it was really fun for me to be able to ask her how that clicked for her how it got her in the studio, just practising anything she could, with any supplies that were possible until her voice started coming through. It's hopefully a message that you'll take with you to heart but sometimes all it takes is starting and doing the work. And eventually the story will come, the emotion will come the mark that is from your hand and the colours that you want to use and the vision that you have in your head will come through and the work that you want to create. So now I would love to introduce to you, Pamela J. Bates. Let's get going with this episode. Well, hello, Pamela, I am excited to invite you on to the podcast today. I invited you because we've worked together several times already. And I know you and your energy and your work. And I love your art. And it's been really fun that we've been able to collaborate over the last few years, I really wanted to bring you on because I wanted to like dive deeper into how you discovered your voice. And then also just kind of how you stand up for your voice along the way. Because you know, you're really have a dynamic personality. And that comes through in your work, but also in how you communicate.

Pamela 3:15 Well, thanks for having me, it's a pleasure. It's always a I love talking art. And I love talking that kind of empowerment that art can give us and give us a voice. You know, I've been creative my entire life. And I'm not sure that I ever had a problem speaking my mind, even as a child, and certainly my parents were part of that because they encouraged us to have our own opinions and to stand up for what we believed in. So I think that that is part of it. But that doesn't mean like I didn't have things like I was bullied. But I still always felt very strong in who I was as a person. And I think that that comes across now in my art. I mean certainly there's times when and I think it's just human nature Kelly to question like the painting I posted. I just made a post on Instagram this morning about it this painting that I had painted, because we all questioned ourselves. And I'd put it against the studio wall and I forgot it was there. And I was like, I don't know if anybody will like this. Not that that's really why I create but sometimes you're just like, I need to set this aside and think about it for a minute and and it made me happy. And then I found it the other day, the turning things around and like going through things in my studio. And I was like, oh, you know, I really like this one a lot. And I'm just gonna post it and it sold right away and people had the nicest things to say and then there was other people in line and that's what I want us to kind of stop doing is that self editing that we do so well.

Kellee 4:55 Which is what I kind of jumped in on this January. I was like really a revival of self. And you and I were having some discussions about that, which was really exciting to me. But I, I empathise with you, and I relate to you a lot, because I have always been outspoken. I was also bullied as a kid. It didn't, yeah, got me from being outspoken, and worse than just kind of transfers into the artwork. But it's amazing how much even with all this these years of experience, how much we can still find ourselves doubting ourselves questioning our work questioning our self worth. And yet, somehow, you and I both do this, we just push through that, yeah, the fear and the pain and just put our work out there and then look at what happens.

Pamela 5:42 That's the that's the payoff is that when you risk that vulnerability, whether it's just yourself in your studio or not, because sometimes it's even, you know, you're working through personal things, you might not know it until you look at it later. And then you're like, Oh, that's interesting, you know, whether it's marks or colours or a feeling that you get from it. And you think, well, maybe I was working through this. But when you push through that, and you allow yourself to be vulnerable in in that creative energy, I think nine times out of 10, you get so many blessings from it. And you gain strength, you get joy, you get connection with other people when you risk putting it out there, because that's really hard to not just creating but putting it out there. That's a whole nother level of being vulnerable with yourself. But I've also probably when we make our best work, I think so.

Kellee 6:41 For sure. And I'm discovering that this year, I'm like, What's the disconnect of the work that I make? It may be pretty, but is it as deep of an expression of myself as I can make it be? And that's really where I want to go. So when you do that, and you're vulnerable, and you ask yourself the questions and you pour it out into the art, and then you share it. It does surprise you back, doesn't it?

Pamela 7:03 It does. And I think also like we have to remember we are in a very unprecedented time with social media and being online and having that access and having it affect us having it. Hopefully, we can silence it a bit. Because it shouldn't be guiding us so much in what we create, just like the painting I was just talking about, like if um, I don't know who said it, maybe Picasso but like, don't worry about it, like just paint. Your job is to paint and put it out there and let somebody else critique it.

Kellee 7:35 I think Andy Warhol said something like that. Yes, yes, I think it was Warhol. Yeah, making art does make artwork, put it out there, let them decide if it's good, or it's bad, and then get back to work and make more art.

Pamela 7:47 I think I was him. And I think that that is really the crux of it as a creative person. Because no matter what, I think, if we're creating a lot of work, and this is another way to kind of build up that muscle, because it can be a muscle that you have to strengthen. And especially if you're not like the two of us who you know are sure in ourselves and have no problem speaking up. It is a muscle that you can strengthen. And I think over time, number one with supportive people. And if you don't have supportive people, then you need to find a different tribe. You need to find a different group of people supporting you. Because that really helps to kind of have that foundational support. Enable enabling you to to strengthen that muscle so that then you don't need the support support as much as you did. You're finding it within yourself. But creating art on a regular basis. And pushing through all those questions. And just making it making it making it making it that is how we get better. And that's how we push through the voice. In our heads that question. Is this any good? I always want to come from a place of freedom of expression. And if we're constantly adding, editing ourselves through the process, then it's not going to be work that is completely completely authentic to who we are as human beings.

Kellee 9:14 Yeah, editing it through the lens of what will other people think how will they respond? They're really the external rather than the internal, and it changes everything. Pamela 9:25 Right. Don't you think that's a tricky thing that I think, and I think artists historically have certainly had that to some extent, but not the way it is right now with social media.

Kellee 9:37 Make the work today, show it today. See if anyone likes it, decide if you're going to make it again. I mean, that's really not the right attitude to go through my Oh, a little pause button, make the work, let it sit for a while. Let it be part of your soul until you're ready to share it publicly.

Pamela 9:55 You don't have to share every piece of work that you make. You can make a lot work and then you can go through and decide which are the ones that really speak to you as an artist. And that is another tool that I think helps artists and certainly it's helped me is to be able to like just, you know, lay out a lot of paper. I like working on paper to kind of work out ideas I work on Canvas to but paper, I love it. I love it as a substrate. And there's just a different freedom for me. When I am working on paper, then when I don't know why I really don't I haven't quite figured.

Kellee 10:32 I feel like there's maybe some more freedom and how we make the marks and use the paper and yeah, I don't know, but I paper is my favourite substrate even though yes, I use Canvas and board as well. Papers so much.

Pamela 10:48 It is so much fun. And it allows you to kind of just let go a little bit and realise that I think that that least preciousness of the paper, you know, if you get, you know, some good workhorse paper like Strathmore mixed media or watercolour depending on what you're working with, or whatever you use for oil. I'm not an oil painter, it allows you that freedom without thinking I'm wasting this because that's something else that creeps into artists had a lot people who have spoken to me people that I've done coaching with it, I'm wasting it, you're never wasting it, you're creating something that wasn't there before. And don't think of necessarily just that piece, I think of what you're gaining as an artist by creating that piece. And I think if we create enough, I mean, I don't know about you, but I have a pile of stuff that Whoo. Yeah, that's it's not going anywhere.

Kellee 11:45 Yeah, I call it garbage art. And I do it on purpose, because it gives you permission to play and not worry about the results. Yeah,

Pamela 11:52 I call it the proverbial ship pile. You know?

Pamela 11:59 I mean, if you are creating enough, I mean, I imagine I mean, Picasso was amazing. And he was very prolific, but I'm sure that there are pieces that he looked back at and said, Wow, that's not where I'm going. You know. So I think if we create enough, we get a stockpile of things that are just kind of, hmm. But the more we create, the more we also have within our giant overall pile of art are things that are really good, and that we do want to explore more. And it gives us that muscle to kind of look and say, hey, you know, it's not all bad. Uh, maybe I need to be easier on myself. Why are we so supportive of other people, but yet, we can't do that for ourselves. If we would treat ourselves more like we treat our friends and our loved ones with a less harsh lens, you know, then maybe we would get strengthen that muscle a little bit quicker.

Kellee 13:03 Yeah, I mean, it's really, honestly, we get to do this. So if you're making a choice to be an artist, the goal would be to push past that point of being hard on yourself and start really enjoying the work that you're making. Well,

Pamela 13:15 that's it, I say, I mean, if you're not having fun, then find a different hobby, or find a different path in life. Because if you're really like, a real, you know, whether you're painting to, you know, as a hobby, you enjoy it, you want to sell a little you want it to be your career, whatever it is, it's okay, whatever it is, is okay, whatever is right for you is good. But let's do it with all your heart, whatever it is, you're gonna do exactly like if you're if you're not enjoying it, it just makes no sense.

Kellee 13:49 Right? So I want to go back to a story I remember, just a little bit like it must have been years ago, you were talking about it, and I still haven't made it up. I think it's Boston. You went to a museum, and that was kind of a catalyst for you your impetus to start creating. I mean, tell us a little about what you saw on what it inspired in you and how you've transformed your work since then. 

Pamela 14:15 I've created as I said before, I've created my whole life. But I did not create in this way, Kellee, I was a graphic designer for 23 plus years with my own business, I did PR and marketing for people and I did the design work as well, ad planning. I was really burnt out from being attached to the mouse and the keyboard and looking at a screen all day every day. And there was just other really challenging life stuff going on, like with people who I loved, you know, facing life challenges that were really heavy. And I just felt I wasn't feeling a lot of joy. I was feeling a lot of stress, and not a lot of joy and my sister said you know, let's go into Boston, and you haven't been to the gardener. I've not been to the gardener Museum, which is insane. Someplace I'd always wanted to go. But I hadn't gone because I've always loved art. And we went to the gardener, and we were two of the first people there that morning. So which is highly unusual for me if you know me. But we were we were right on time for the opening, and they opened up the doors. And I walked in and when you you walk into kind of a new wing, and then you were faced with this beautiful, almost like a Venice palace in the heart of the Fenway in Boston and you walk in and there's this amazing courtyard of greenery and flowers and statues. And it's amazing. It's breathtaking and and the buildings surrounding it is three or four storeys high. All glass just stunning. So I was overwhelmed with that. And then I stepped into the next room. The stepped into the Spanish cloister, which is the first room off of the courtyard. And I turned around and I was immediately met with John Singer Sargent L. Julio, and it is a massive, massive painting. It's it takes up a whole wall and Isabella Stewart Gardner who made this museum who's an inspiration sourced this beautiful Moorish arch because she knew she wanted this painting. The story is I think her brother in law had it and she kept saying I need to have this painting for the museum. But he didn't pay for a long time. And then he finally caved. But I came face to face with that. And I think I was just an audible gasp I was like, Oh my God, this painting is amazing. And then the security guard came in, and my sister and I were the only one standing in this area. And he said, I haven't even turned the lights on. Let me turn the lights on. He turned the lights on and it blew that painting blew me back and took my breath away. And it was just a moment. It was just a moment that I needed to recognise that my soul was speaking to me. I just knew immediately. I know this isn't how it always happens for people but for me, this is how it happened. This is how I picked up a paintbrush. I knew I had to go home and pick up a paintbrush. And I had and I did. I did. I went home and whatever I had, I think I had like kids watercolours. And I don't have kids, but I had like cheap watercolours, you know, that you would probably use in grade school and some things because I would maybe sometimes sketch or something, because I was doing logos and I would sketch things out. So whatever supplies I had, I took out but let me tell you, I was painting on copy paper. I didn't have any paper. So I was painting watercolours on copy paper, which if you paint watercolours, I mean, that would have been discouraging to anybody.

Kellee 18:04 But you had to get it out of yours. Like it was like, oozing out of you.

Pamela 18:08 Yeah. And I, and I wasn't painting anything especially deeper. Or, you know, I just was painting like little flowers, you know, wellies, wellies with flowers in them. Girls with, you know, the back of their, the bonds and their hair. I was just painting things that I thought were pretty. And I just kept at it. But I knew almost immediately, like, I didn't know immediately, I don't know who I'm kidding. I knew immediately in the gardener in front of El Jaleo that there was a huge shift coming that this was a that I was being taught. This was a calling and I needed to pick up the brush and I needed to just keep going. And that's what I have done is I've just kept going

Kellee 18:54 I'm kind of curious how long ago was that?

Pamela 19:00That moment in time you like it was about six years ago. That's all man you've really, like blown it up since then, like your work is so amazing. Here's the thing. I just keep taking a step. And it was probably all bottled up right for ya. I wasn't painting

Kellee 19:15 and all your experience of understanding design and composition and colour because that's what it requires to do graphic design. Yeah. underlying foundation was there ready for you?

Pamela 19:27 Right, right. But expressing myself through painting is the most amazing, joyful thing ever. It's just even with that pile of stuff that is not going to make it anywhere and I'll paint over it and do whatever with and that's what I say like don't get hung up on painting that you can paint over it. Yeah, you can cut it up into smaller pieces, whatever. It's just paper. So let yourself explore.

Kellee 19:59 Not every piece needs to be the masterpiece,

Pamela 20:01 right? It's not gonna be I think as soon as we realise that that's the deal. I mean, not every piece I paid is amassed, I'm not even close. Right? I have so so far to go, I'm so new to this, you know, I have, um, I just want to continue to grow as an artist and to be able to express myself, freer and freer. I'm always trying to really kind of channel that freedom of a child, where it's, you know, it's that early, early, almost before they get to school, and there's no edit there. There's no editing, just self expression.

Kellee 20:41 I love that. I think that that's a great saying there on maybe an edit yourself, right?

Pamela 20:49 Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Like when we've all had, you know, keyboard warriors. Oh, that is that my kid could do that. And then I say, because they have no idea. Like, how happy that makes me. Successful and the freedom of a child became a cry. Oh, thank you so much. When somebody says that, I'm like, awesome.

Kellee 21:15 That's good. You do have a lovely way of mark making and putting, it's almost, it's almost poetic when you look at your work and see the way that those different elements combined together, is that just a combination of exploring and exploring and exploring again,

Pamela 21:32 that's such a beautiful thing to say. Thank you so much. Really? That's so lovely. Ah, I don't know. I've just always had a lot to say.

Kellee 21:41 Let's not hold back. Let's say it go

Pamela 21:44 yeah. You know, here's the thing. Like I was listening to your interview with bananas. And you were talking about how you were you were seeing this connection between the writing and I don't write about it at all. But the thing is, I have been a writer, all of my life. I have written poetry. I have written for newspapers, I was a newspaper writer, I was a newspaper editor. I wrote promotional publicity writing for my previous business. So I have written all my life, and I am a natural writer, it comes very easily for me. So I think, to me, this is just another form of writing. So I think maybe I've done enough exploring with writing and now it's just all coming out. Oh, coming out and paint all coming out and paint. But yeah, I love mark making I could mark make all day, every day. It just feels like this beautiful place. Yeah, I just love it so much. And I'm really glad like when I started, I was a kid who grew up loving art, but I loved the Impressionists was really who I loved. I loved Renoir and Monet and Van Gogh. That was really what I was drawn to. And I didn't appreciate abstract art. Like I really just didn't get it. I would I remember saying to myself as a younger person, like I just don't get it. I just don't get me to.

Kellee 23:16 I'd look at a Rothko and I'm like, It's just big blocks of colour. And young person would say that, yeah, but someone who's been an artist and has an artist heart will look at that work and say, I know what it took to birth that into the world.

Pamela 23:29 Yeah. Then I just saw this that that famous painting a Helen Frankenthaler sitting on the floor, surrounded by her amazing huge canvases getting ready for that show. And she was quite young, I think it might have been the armoury show. And it was mostly men. And she was quite young, and I just couldn't even it just spoke to me immediately. And then I started painting abstract art, just like that. It was just like that. And then I was like, now I, I wasn't ready to understand it. I wasn't ready to feel what that art, you know, makes you feel because it is it's more about the feelings because you don't and especially non representational, you don't. It's about the feeling.

Kellee 24:19 I think it does take a level of maturity to get to that point where abstract can speak to you on that level. Yes, sometimes, you know, non artists end up really loving and appreciating abstract art, no doubt about it. But as artists, I think it took us some time to understand what it meant what what abstract, especially the abstract expressionists of mid century were just Yeah, revolutionary in their time as well. I think so. They just brought it and, you know, like I went to the depot. I've said this a million times. Now I went to the Diebenkorn exhibit five times because it's

Pamela 24:58 My gosh. That's the thing like I go back to see that Singer Sargent and here's Singer Sargent, who really was known as a portrait artist. His portraits are amazing, but this happens to be El Jaloe is a very active painting. It's a flamenco dancer and she's in mid dance and her arm has swung high and the other arm is low, probably with cast announced, I don't know and the musicians are lined up on chairs behind her and the other girls are on the edge of their seat the other women ready to take the dance floor and watching her do this. But he really, really just affected me. I don't know why it just, it really is amazing.

Kellee 25:45 He's one of my favourite artists too. And it was one of the first big art exhibits I ever saw was a John Singer Sargent he said credit at the National Gallery of Art. I would love to go on Madame X you know his his one with the girl but yeah,

Pamela 25:59 very we had to adjust. That was such a such a gamble. That was quite a scandal that deep cut down on her. Yes. And

Kellee 26:09 I've seen his his Watercolours are amazing, amazing storyteller in a way, you know? Yes. I'm gonna put some of these images on the show notes on my on my website, so people can actually see these works of art that we're talking about. And I think this is a note that the listeners ought to consider go see some art in person. I know we've been cooped up for two years now. But you know what? To find your nearest art gallery art art museum to make a whole destination trip and spend time in front of actual artists so different than looking at it on a screen.

Pamela 26:47 So so different. I cannot wait I have not been to a gallery yet. I said to my husband i said i i just said that. The other thing is that I have to get to a museum or a gallery soon, like I have to.

Kellee 27:03 I think we're all human. I can give up movie theatres. I'm okay if I don't eat in a crowded restaurant. Gotta go again, sir. I need to go to see the art in the gallery. There's some really amazing exhibits happening. Yeah,

Pamela 27:17 I know I would love I really would love to get to Baltimore for Joan Mitchell.

Kellee 27:22 Joan Mitchell, is going to be through the whole summer come and visit, like a second podcast episode. And we'll take everyone on a tour.

Pamela 27:31 One that she's she's amazing. She's amazing. And I feel like once I recognise this amazing, expressive energy through Helen, it just, it was like the dam broke and Joan and sigh I just, I love Joan Mitchell. I love Cy Twombly.

Kellee 27:51 I can see some references in your work. How do you stay? Here's a good question, then how do you stay true to yourself? First, we always like to absorb and see what beautiful art is out there. But stay true to yourself without letting you know what's popular, dictate what you do?

Pamela 28:09 Well, again, I think it is hard because we're all on social media every day. So I think kind of the rule that I have tried to, you know, create work by is like if I see something that inspires me, like the painting I painted last night, it was really just my happy place, the beach that I grew up on and have spent so many hours of my time. But I love that Ken Dunn, I don't know if you know him. He's an amazing Australian artist. He's like a national treasure in Australia. He's he was a graphic designer. And then he recreated his life in like, I think his 40s and started painting. And he has a very naive style, and very gestural, loose movements. And Catherine Bradford who does vary? I don't know they both just speak to me. So I gave a little nod to them in my post. But the thing is, what I tried to say is if you're looking at somebody and you don't want to be, you know, expressing yourself through somebody else's voice you want to be expressing yourself as as yourself. So what is it about even if it's Singer Sargent, if you're in a museum and you go, what is it about that piece that really speaks to me it well for that it was the energy, the the massiveness of it that he painted this wall size, painting, colour like is it the colour? Is it the composition of this artist? Because we're all drawn to different artists? I mean, I think that that is natural. But what is it specifically about that artists that really speaks to me as a creative soul? Is it the colour or is it the marks? Is it you know, the movement, the energy, is it what they're saying? Because we all like different kinds of arts, you know, different kind of art. So if it's representational like, is it the way they paint that Rose is it you know that it's not so fine, detailed or maybe it's a little impressionistic. Try to break it down for yourself, like when you are really pulled to a piece of art, you know, when you recognise that you are pulled to a piece of art, ask yourself those questions. What is it that speaks to me about that art, and I think that helps guide you in your practice. But you know, honestly, we are on the internet every single day and we are bombarded with so much imagery. So much imagery might be Kellee 30:39 time to turn it off for a little while. It's hard to do, but it's it's probably time to set some Pamela 30:45 limits. Yeah, I was just gonna say like, I just tried to get Yeah, I try to get outside in nature every day other than the last month because it has been obscenely cold.

Kellee 30:58 Yeah, winter, we're almost over winter is almost over. We're in that no,

Pamela 31:03 yeah. And it was like a sheet of ice. So I couldn't go in my yard for weeks. And then we got more snow. But usually I'm out with the dog in the woods every day taking that all in stopping at my hometown beach, and taking that in. And just the glorious, I think nature is like the soother of the soul. And really where most of my inspiration comes from, and I don't know it while I'm seeing it. And I don't necessarily know it, as I'm painting it. But I can sometimes recognise it after whether it's criss crossing of branches or shades of colour in the sunset with sunset Meadows across from me. Yeah, so I think we have to kind of almost do a cleanse, do a cleanse, of, of everything we see. But certainly, again, historically, artists were, you know, meeting together in salons, and you know, creating and seeing each other's works. So I think that that is just a natural part of creativity for many, many people that you want to share it and see what other people are doing and your influence. You can see with like the abstract expressionists in the Impressionists for that now, they have they were influenced by each other? Yeah,

Kellee 32:21 I was just gonna say that, that it's obvious that as we evolve each period of artwork, they're evolving together, because they're cutting communication. They spend their time talking, they they don't make work in a bubble, and neither do we, we just have a bigger realm of influence with the internet, but sometimes, right where it's like you find that balance between gleaning ideas versus copying ideas.

Pamela 32:46 Yeah, yeah. So I think those questions are a good place to start and to, and to ask yourself, if you're thinking that maybe I'm getting a little too close, then I don't know. Ask yourself, what it is that you want to say. What it is you what is it that you want to say? And don't be creating it so that it looks pretty on the internet?

Kellee 33:07 Ha, there it is, there's the key. Sometimes that's what we do is like, can I just make a pretty thing that people give me a lot of likes?

Pamela 33:16 Well, let's make a pretty thing is not necessarily to just want to make a pretty thing isn't necessarily bad. I think the problem, right there is that you're making it to get a lot of likes. Yes, exactly. That's the problem. And I know it's difficult. You know, I started with no followers just like everybody else and have just, it hasn't, you know, it's been a lot of hard work every day, not hard work that I grew. I mean, I really enjoy connecting with people and talking about art. So I haven't enjoyed the time that I've spent and the connections I've made on Instagram have been amazing.

Kellee 33:56 I really think so too. You know, I lament how much time spent there but then I also am so grateful for the relationships like that's how I met, you know, I did you into the previous true colours programme that I have out there now.

Pamela 34:10 I loved that class. So yeah, that that content

Kellee 34:12 still there. But you also participated in the virtual art summit in 2020. That was

Pamela 34:17 fun to my mom has that piece on her wall I gave that piece I created to my mom was like a collage. piece. Yeah,

Kellee 34:25 it was a very important like venture that I've continued with now we'll be having our third Virtual Art Summit. This means to open up the past ones for like add on purchases. So for those who want to experience Yeah, but the fun thing about the Virtual Art some is that I end up being able to support other artists, not just you in your career, but give scholarships, giving away supplies. And that's awesome. So it's turned into like this whole big, really cool thing. So and that's

Pamela 34:54 what you don't know, right? When you're doing something like that. You're just doing it because you're feeling pulled Yeah, do it. And I would say that in the studio too, if you're feeling pulled to do something to try something, oh my goodness, I try it. Yeah.

Kellee 35:11 Try it. Be an explorer in your own studio with your own supplies, go for it. And even with your art career, tell me a little about how you support artists. Are you still running your mentorship right now? Are you taking a break from it,

Pamela 35:26 I really have taken a break just because, well, the pandemics been crazy. But that really wasn't the impetus for taking a break, you know, my mom's 88. And I just took a step back so I could have more time with her. And, you know, as you age, you're, you're faced with different health challenges. And I'm, you know, just want to be able to have that, that extra time with her. And I just wanted to focus more on my art, and growing as an artist. So you have to figure out what that balance is. So I really have kind of taken a little step back from that. But the thing is, like, I really I did enjoy working with the people that I've worked with in the past. And I grew as an artist from it. And I hope that they did, but I certainly did.

Kellee 36:11 That's exactly what I'm finding too is I'm mentoring artists through their own art career right now is like, Oh, my goodness is the biggest growth process for myself too huge thrilly. Such a beautiful collaboration. So tell me about how you sell your work or tell the audience I'd love for them to understand this gratitude pricing thing that you do and how you're selling a lot of your work just right through Instagram,

Pamela 36:36 I'm selling most of my work right through Instagram.

Kellee 36:39 I just think that's amazing. When I see that happening, I'm just like, the Pap, like, in the previous days in your previous career, you'd have to like pay for ads, you run a shop, go for gallery, or whatever, and you're able to, to create your own world and your own vision about your business. And it's not really like anything else I see people doing the way you do that.

Pamela 37:03 Well, I'll tell you the back story for that because there's more to it than it appears. I started Collectors Club, which is kind of the no membership, no dues, no meetings. If you love our you're in club. That's it. That's all required to be a member of Collectors Club, there is no membership. It just is collected love if you love our stop by my feed when I'm running Collectors Club. And that really started out of the way my dad used to do things. And I lost my dad a few years ago, like four or five years ago now. But he he was a missile engineer. He was an Inertial Guidance missile engineer. So the guidance system of missiles were inertial guidance is kind of like a gyroscope that always receptors itself, which I love that I did a collection based on that. But in addition to being an engineer, he also was you know, he did woodworking. He was really a renaissance man. He did everything. He was a master of marketing. But he was also just a master of making the most fun out of whatever he was doing. And my dad Jerry, he, his friend had a restaurant in town and they're like, Well, how are we going to get people in like you're open now. But we really want to bring people in and out like dad's funeral. His friend said, you know, when I opened my restaurant, Jerry took it upon himself to claim it as like his own off Broadway theatre because they started up this thing called the bridge club. And none of them played bridge had nothing to do with bridge it was just an excuse for people that became members you know, they would they would kind of sign people in not sign people in but do ceremonies for people joining the bridge club, including many many presidential candidates, President Joe Biden came he was signed into the bridge club it was just it was just a way to make people feel to allow you know even make good feel but how to create a connection between people and make it fun and they just did fun events all the time. You know to bring people into the restaurant but always you know giving back at the same time and that's kind of where the gratitude pricing comes in. To Collectors Club. Sometimes I do I it happens right on my feed. It's usually over weekend. This one I've extended I've continued to be posting gratitude pieces with really reduced pricing but not but really as a way of giving back because I would be nowhere Kelly. If it was not for the support that I've received. Just flat across the board from my followers from Art lovers I've connected with on Instagram and locally and my collectors, I would be nowhere. And I'm just really, in this crazy world we're living in, I started it at the beginning of the pandemic, really just as a way. And also because I have so much art in my studio, if you are an artist, and you're working artist, and you're creating, you know how much art is in your studio, and I can't upload it all, I'm terrible at keeping my website up to date, because it's time consuming. And it's just a way for me to show people the other art that they might not, you know, that are in files in my studio. Yeah. And get our into people's hands because my mission is to share rat, the radical joy of soul fueled art right to seek, find and share the radical joy of soul fueled art. And I cannot do that, if the art is sitting in my studio. So if there are times that I mean, this is I can't, you know, I can't complete that circle. And I've received like the nicest messages through Collectors Club, and I made incredible connections. Like I have one collector who we just go back and forth, like he's very much follows ceramic artists and has a collection, excuse me, has a collection of ceramics and pottery. And he's introduced me like so many artists who I don't know ceramic art that well. And we just have these amazing conversations in DMS, like back and forth. And that's just one connection I have made because a collector's club, and it just opens the door and says, Come on, in, come on, in, come on, come hang out. I still say I really need to do like a collector's club, and then do like a Sunday brunch with mimosas.

Kellee 41:55 That would be so much. So sweet. I mean, you can, there are ways of doing that. Even online now with live video or anything like that. Yeah, I love that. It's like it. I love that your Collectors Club says just come on in. And there's no real joining anything, you're just part of the club, if you're

Pamela 42:15 just having fun. And if you enjoy art you'd like to, and I said it this time and I preface my collectors public when I do Collectors Club, I share a lot of art over the course of usually over the course of three days like Friday, four days, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, this one I've just extended because we're in such flux. As a world that I just, I'm just feeling, I just am feeling so much gratitude for what I have, that I just want to share my art in a way that, you know, hopefully will, you know, connect with other people and has allowed people to purchase which is always the cherry on top. But even if I wasn't a selling artist, I would still be making art.

Kellee 42:58 And that's, that's the key right there.

Pamela 43:01 I've always created in whatever way and this is just the way that I'm creating it now, but I couldn't I'm always been a creative so I got the best things, you know, childhood memories, this book that my mom had, that was crafts and I remember like choosing things out of that book and making crafts and all sorts of things. You know, once you're if you're a creative soul, you know, your creative soul, you have to express yourself in some way.

Kellee 43:27 I agree. Just never, there's always something else that we need to be able to get out and get it into the world and, and, and especially strong minded women that we are, and it can come out through our creativity. And that's kind of extra special.

Pamela 43:43 I feel like you know, maybe I wasn't ready for abstract art until I got to a certain age until I had lived certain experiences. But I mean, that's not to say like Helen Frankenthaler she was in her 20s and making that stuff. Um, but for me to appreciate it, I think I had to have gone through certain life, you know, joys and sorrows. That's, that's the story of life, you know, the joys and the sorrows and to then really see what that expression was about. And yeah, I don't know, I just want women especially to feel empowered through their creativity, to silence that inner critic. And that's a muscle to the silence that that just takes practice. You just have to catch yourself and then it gets easier catching yourself and reframing things and I just feel like this is a huge time for women to really step into their own and express themselves fully. Without editing. We have so much to add So much to add to and and that's, you know, that's taking into account that really the art world is still there's a there's a lot of sexism going on, and a lot more opportunities, even just in our museums. You look at the space that in our museums that is dedicated to male artists versus female artists and ladies, we have a very, very long way to go.

Kellee 45:27 We're gonna do we're gonna manage doing that. We got to keep pushing forward. If not now When? Yeah. Well, on that note, I'm going to say let's wrap up this conversation and make sure that everyone heads to the show notes so that they can learn more about Yeah, Pamela J. Bates and go to her Instagram, maybe the next time she runs a collector's club sale. yourself. So thank you for joining me.

Pamela 45:56 Thank you for having me. Thanks for talking with me.

Kellee 45:59 Thank you. All right. I'll see you again. Next week on the podcast. Please share this episode. If you loved it. Even if you liked it a little bit, please just hit that reshare on Instagram. Kellee Wynn studios and let everybody know that you've been listening to unfold and what you thought of it and how it's making a difference to you. And you know, subscribe. And I'll see you again next week. Thank you


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