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Can You Name #5WomenArtists?

Most people are surprised they aren't able to complete this challenge, even though the average person has no problem naming 5 male artists! Why is it so difficult? There is still a tremendous gender imbalance in the presentation of art in the U.S. and abroad...

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The National Museum of Women in the Arts created the #5WomenArtists campaign to directly address this issue. iCanvas is proud to support this campaign and our female artists to help eliminate the gap.


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  • camilla-derrico
  • elena-kulikova
  • caia-koopman
  • hikari-shimoda
  • iris-scott
  • megan-majewski
  • amanda-greenwood
  • amy-brinkman
  • catrin-welz-stein
  • debi-coules
  • hallie-elizabeth
  • julia-contacessi
  • kahrianne-kerr
  • kate-blacklock
  • lee-keller
  • linzi-lynn
  • lisa-whitehouse
  • liz-brizzi
  • sana-jamlaney
  • titti-garelli
  • mary-bacon
caia-koopman //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-caia-koopman-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-caia-koopman-mobile.jpg Caia Koopman | Santa Cruz, CA

What inspired you to become an artist?

My great grandmother was an artist, she spent a lot of time drawing with me when I was little. I loved looking at her paintings and she would say I could be an artist too if I practiced.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

I was able to be part of a huge Popsurrealism show in Leon France, it was so much fun and such an honor.

Is there a particular female artist you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

I love the work of Lolo (Lauren Ys). There is a lot of strength and meaning in her work, also just plain fun and super creative.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Be Brave

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Tatiana Suarez, Lolo (aka Lauren Ys), Hueman (aka Allison), Robin Eisenburge, Amy Sol

amanda-greenwood //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-amanda-greenwood-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-amanda-greenwood-mobile.jpg Amanda Greenwood | Vancouver, Canada

What inspired you to become an artist?

I have always loved painting and making things. My mother tells me even as a child I was straight to the painting easel at nursery.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Be supportive of other female artists. We all face the same challenges. We need more allies and less critics.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women?

Even though its a wartime propaganda piece, when I see the "We Can Do It!" Rosie the Riveter poster, I think yes, yes we can do it.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

I couldn't afford art school, even though I was [accepted] into a few. So I went to make-up school with the scholarship I had and was a fashion make-up artist for years. As an adult I enrolled in art school, which is when I decided to go for being an artist full time.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

No awards, I am still fairly new to all this, I am just very proud that I can make a living doing what I love, also see a piece up in someones home on social media.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Frida Kahlo, Georgia O’Keeffe, Tamara de Lempicka, Natalie Foss, Amy Sherald

sana-jamlaney //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-sana-jamlaney-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-sana-jamlaney-mobile.jpg Sana Jamlaney | From India, Lives in Dubai

What inspired you to become an artist?

Everything that I was surrounded with since I was a child inspired me to become an artist. The continuous growth and rapid change in the city I lived, the hypocrisy of culture and its ability to stagnate growth and the human will to push past it.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

I was fortunate enough to have an extremely supportive family and we overcame all the obstacles together as a unit for which I'm very grateful. The biggest obstacle was the stigma attached to being an artist in my culture over a decade ago. It was always viewed as a hobby and never a profession.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

My artwork 'The Silent One II', one of four paintings, each depicting a segment of society of contemporary India, was featured as the cover art for 'Gendered Dimensions of Development' published by the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development celebrating 50 years of research.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

You are only as relevant as the work you create today. Strive to create your best every day of your life.

Is there a particular female artist that you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

Shirin Neshat. I was introduced to her earlier photographs by my mentor who is another fantastic female artist named Margherita Abbozzo. Shirin Neshat's work the way I view it explores religious codes and women in Muslim societies.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Yayoi Kusama, Shirin Neshat, Ran Hwang, Niki de St. Phalle, Frida Kahlo

kate-blacklock //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-kate-blacklock-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-kate-blacklock-mobile.jpg Blacklock Studios, Kate Blacklock | Providence, RI

What inspired you to become an artist?

I am a maker and have been as long as I can remember. Transforming materials into pictures and objects captured my imagination since I was a child. I have inexplicable need to make art. Art enhances our lives. Good art makes us stop, think, remember, feel and connect. It makes us aware of our humanity. It is this aspiration that drives me day after day and year after year.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Work hard and continue to push yourself and not give up. This is the advice I would give to ANY artist. Spend 80% of your time on your art and 20% of your time on your career.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

I consider the Vietnam War Memorial By Maya Lin fills this question for me. Although it is a memorial, I consider it a work of art. It has also impacted millions of people, in an arena that has been almost totally filled by men. I think it was a game changer.

Is there a particular female artist you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

Betty Woodman is one of the artists I most admire. She died this year at age 87. Her most recent solo exhibition of all new work opened within the last 8 months. She was a pioneer in many ways. She was the first living woman to have a solo exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in 2006. She was a sculptor working primarily in clay. She was the first person who bridged the Craft World and became a "heavy hitter" in the much different Fine Art World. She was taken seriously because she took herself seriously and was tenacious in her ambition. Most of all, her creativity was boundless. She never rested, physically or creatively. In the last few years of her life, she had multiple solo shows every year all around the globe.

If you didn’t need to sleep at night, what would you spend the time doing?

Learning a new skill, such as figure drawing, or CAD, or voice training or figure skating!

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Betty Woodman, Maya Lin, Louise Nevelson, Tara Donovan, Agnes Martin, Marlene Dumas, Artemisia Gentileschi, Kiki Smith. There are so many.

catrin-welz-stein //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-catrin-welz-stein-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-catrin-welz-stein-mobile.jpg Catrin Welz-Stein | From Germany, Lives in Seoul

What inspired you to become an artist?

The desire to create something new, experimenting with colors and shapes.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

The giant spider sculpture from Louise Bourgeois, because it reflects strength, womanhood, courage, caring, courage in many ways (Even if I normally don't like spiders).

If you didn’t need to sleep at night, what would you spend the time doing?

I would read a good book, drink red wine, make long walks and examine the moon.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

I got an award for best Illustration from CA Communications Arts in 2015.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Believe in yourself.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Flora Bowley , Claire Desjardins, Alice Wellinger, Anne Siems, Betsy Walton

camilla-derrico //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-camilla-derrico-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-camilla-derrico-mobile.jpg Camilla D’Errico | Vancouver, CA

What inspired you to become an artist?

I’ve always loved and been drawn to the creative world throughout my life whether it was Saturday morning cartoons as a kid or falling in love with Japanese manga storytelling. And it was animation and comics that impassioned me to share my own stories. I couldn’t wait, I even started self-publishing in college and submitting to design projects and contests while I was still a student. The more I filled my days with art the more I wanted to be a part of it and create art for a living.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

The way I made art wasn’t always accepted the way it is now, and I encountered some resistance. One of my professors in college tried to dissuade me from drawing and painting how I wanted by telling me manga wasn’t a legitimate art form. I didn’t let that change how I wanted to express myself though. And actually it was years later that same professor contacted me to say he had taken a trip to France and saw how prevalent the visual themes I include in my art were, and apologized to me for trying to squash my style. It was an early experience that taught me to be confident in the face of adversity.

What art piece (yours or another artist’s) do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength and equality for women?

I feel a lot of my artwork speaks to people in different ways, and communicates different things I feel about what it means to be a strong person or viewing the world through a perspective of equality. In 2008 I created a painting “Yuuta” that embodies my beliefs about the mind being the most attractive part of a woman, and I feel her message is just as poignant now, or even more than ever. My upcoming solo exhibition collection opening at Corey Helford Gallery in April of this year is focused on equality and diversity as a theme. So each of these pieces would speak to how striving for equality and empowering ourselves as women and people has been important to my artwork for many years.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

I think my advice I have to share is something anyone can take to heart and that it’s to be true to what you want to express, and be willing to work hard to achieve your goals. Talent is a great thing to have, but it’s not going to be enough if you don’t invest in making things happen. There are some amazingly talented people I know in my personal life that don’t push themselves so their art stays as a hobby. But if you’re really serious about making and sharing art for a living, put your all into it! Aim high and keep working at it, and you can go places you never thought possible before.

Is there a particular female artist that you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

There are so many artists that come to mind it’s hard to choose. But I feel from my heart-of-hearts that I’m grateful for Tara McPherson’s support and encouragement as an artist. In 2012 she encouraged my new direction my art took in my showing at her Cotton Candy Machine Gallery. Tara is a strong and capable woman and artist, and her skill and passion is amazing from her toy designs to her cute characters and beautiful paintings. I love them!

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

It’s tough to pick only 5 but I would have to say #HikariShimoda #TaraMcPherson #KathieOlivas #MabGraves #ErikaSanada

amy-brinkman //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-amy-brinkman-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-amy-brinkman-mobile.jpg Amy Brinkman - Willow & Olive | From MN, Lives in FL

What inspired you to become an artist?

A strong burning passion for art and design that started when I was a little girl. It’s always been there and seems to grow stronger the older I get.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Do art everyday, in some shape or form, even if you don’t feel like it. Discipline is the key to becoming successful.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

Yes, myself. I would say I am my own biggest obstacle. Lack of confidence in my own abilities and the need for perfection in myself have been my biggest stumbling blocks.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

Being successful in marrying business with art. My designs have been sold as both traditional artwork and also turned into various products which have been distributed and sold worldwide in large chain stores, big box stores and independent retailers.

If you didn’t have to sleep at night, what would you spend the time doing?

Painting watercolor palette swatches. Very relaxing!

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Georgia O'Keeffe, Annie Leibovitz, Frida Kahlo, Mae Chevrette, Cat Coquillette

titti-garelli //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-titti-garelli-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-titti-garelli-mobile.jpg Titti Garelli | Turin, Italy

What inspired you to become an artist?

In my entire life, I didn’t think about doing anything else [other than] paintings.

Is there a particular female artist that you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

If I had the time machine I would like to know and see Elizabeth Vigée le Brun.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Today in Europe and the USA it is easier for women to be an artist. So, just do it!

If you didn’t have to sleep at night, what would you spend the time doing?

Studying new paintings.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Frida Kahlo, Angelica Kaufmann, Artemisia Gentileschi, Rachel Ruysch, Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun, Louise Bourgeois

lee-keller //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-lee-keller-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-lee-keller-mobile.jpg Hippie Hound Studios, Lee Keller | Morgantown, NC

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

My own fear of failure...and the ‘starving artist’ stigma. Took me 22 years after completing art school to pursue my dream.

What inspired you to become an artist?

My mom.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

The thought of being a 'published' artist never really crossed my mind but now I have prints of my work on iCanvas, and in major retailers...Pretty awesome!

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

I think the ‘Fearless Girl’ statue is a great representation!

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Don’t give up, find a niche and build on it!

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Georgia O’Keeffe, Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun, Sturtevant, Helen Frankenthaler, Lee Keller :)

debi-coules https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/debi-coules.jpg https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/debi-coules_m.jpg Debi Coules | From Boston, Lives in Florida

What inspired you to become an artist?

When I was three years old, I picked up a pencil and paper and fell in love with being able to draw and to create something from an object as simple as a pencil. I would draw ladies in beautiful evening gowns for all my friends who would sit and watch me. I never wavered at becoming an artist. I knew that is what I was and pursued my education. Life has been my inspiration and creativity leading the way.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

What I am most proud of is being able to do what I love. It has not been an easy road as I have worked commercially in many different areas of art but have finally been able to come back to do what I truly love, painting.

Is there a particular female artist you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

There are so many women artist who have been an inspiration to me however one of my favorites is Mary Cassatt. Many of her images created were of the social and private lives of women, reflecting the deep connection between a mother and child. I love her use of color,soft strokes and the emotional aspect of her work

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

If it is your true passion and you can’t see yourself doing anything else, then go for it! You need to work on your art everyday and always keep in mind that this will help you perfect your craft and lead to discoveries as well.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun, Mary Cassat, Frida Kahlo,Georgia O'Keefe ,Marie Bracquemond

elena-kulikova https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/elena-kulikova.jpg https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/elena-kulikova-mobile.jpg Elena Kulikova | From Russia, Lives in Los Angeles

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

Yes so many! Being a woman I feel like it's easy to constantly be taken advantage of, I learned the hard way how to stand up for myself and keep boundaries as a working artist.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

Sticking to what I value as my artistic expression and creating photographs that express how I truly feel, and now others appreciate and seek out my art - it's everything I could have ever wanted.

What inspired you to become an artist?

Childhood loneliness helped my imagination grow and want to create.

What art piece (yours or another artist’s) do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

My photography celebrates feminine beauty, my latest body of work called Rainbow Lovers lights up the female body with rainbows showing that we're light beings full of infinite possibilities!

Is there a particular female artist that you'd like to highlight or acknowledge?

Georgia O’Keeffe. When I first saw her work in 4th grade I remember distinctly being in pure awe, the colors, the shapes, the originality. Her art inspired me then and now!

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

My growth throughout the years brings me joy as I think about the gallery exhibits and publications I've achieved, most importantly finding my voice as the artist I love and respect is my greatest accomplishment thus far.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Being a successful artist on your own is nearly impossible, seek out artists you admire and collaborate with them! Share wisdom, knowledge, and love of life and art together!

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Georgia O Keeffe, Miranda July, Sylvia Plath, Frida Kahlo, Yayoi Kusama

liz-brizzi //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-liz-brizzi-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-liz-brizzi-mobile.jpg Liz Brizzi | Los Angeles

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional female artist?

Not really. There were lots of obstacles but I wouldn't call them "unnecessary". If you mean any obstacles that would only pertain to a woman... then choosing to have a child and continuing to have a presence as an artist in the art scene as well as finding the time to actually make art has been difficult. But women are strong, hard working and multi-tasking. We can do it all!

What inspired you to become an artist?

I grew up in a family of artists.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

Giving up a full time job and career...to refocus on what I really loved to do.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Don't give up!

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Swoon, Soey Milk, Loish, Chloe Early, Becky Cloonan

karina-llergo https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/5women-karina-llergo-a.jpg https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/5women-karina-llergo-mobile.jpg Karina Llergo


Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional female artist?

I needed to work hard to have credibility in art between my male colleagues, as I constantly heard them refer to it as “my hobby”. Male artists have their own circle and frequently it’s hard to break in.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

My greatest accomplishment has been balancing my family with my art career.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Above all be true to yourself. Move yourself away from the critics and release their scathing comments from your world. Surround yourself with support, inspiration and words of encouragement. Unite forces with females artist peers, work together, help each other.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Carla Bank, Kate Morgan, Jennifer Lashbrook, Kate Tillman, Mimi Damrauer

hikari-shimoda //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-hikari-shimoda-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-hikari-shimoda-mobile.jpg Hikari Shimoda | Nagano, Japan

Hikari Shimoda


What inspired you to become an artist?

I decided to become an artist because I wanted to express my thoughts and ideas about the world and issues through my art.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

Generally speaking, it is not easy to make a living as an artist in Japan. So I am always looking for different ways and connections to survive in the art industry.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

I think it's important for every artist, whether you are a man or a woman, to practice your work seriously and think about what impact it can have on others. Careers don't have genders; girls can be whatever you want to be, and I want to live in a world where the term "female artist" does not exist.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

This year, I exhibited my largest body of work to date in my fourth major solo at Corey Helford Gallery in Los Angeles.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

I don't have a particular piece in mind because all of my work is based on my experience, and being a woman, I think it is only natural that my work reflect that. However, I believe art can have the power to reveal the experience of those who suffer from social problems.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Loretta Lux, Bjork, Yayoi Kusama, Masako Ando, Kimichi Nishiki

julia-contacessi //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-julia-contacessi-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-julia-contacessi-mobile.jpg Julia Contacessi | Connecticut

What inspired you to become an artist?

I was always — even as a child — drawn to design and creating through all sorts of mediums, but it wasn’t until about 5 years ago that I really focused solely on painting. I’m a details person. I find beauty in the simplest of things. I guess, as a way to hold on to these bits of beauty I see in life, I started creating art. Each piece I create is a selfish attempt to recreate that beauty.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

My proudest accomplishment is that I can do what I love — every day — and make a living at it. It didn't come overnight and I think that is why I am proud.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

What I love about the `Fearless Girl' sculpture by Kristen Visbal is there is so much to dig into. The artist herself has said that, "We want her to stand for very specific goals: gender diversity in leadership and the empowerment of young women so they can grow into leaders." The introduction of the work in relation to sculptor Arturo Di Modica's `Charging Bull' has resulted in a request by Modica to have the piece removed. Responses like "Men who don’t like women taking up space are exactly why we need the Fearless Girl," said by NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio are just the type of interesting discussions developing out of great art. That is truly powerful.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Work and refine. Just like anything else, if you put in the hours and structure a plan, your craft will improve.

Is there a particular female artist that you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

There are so many artists that inspire me — from Candy Chang’s interactive installations to Cathy Choi and her fascination with water. Helen Frankenthaler is another favorite. Her belief that there is “no formula” and the artist should “let the picture lead you where it must go,” are principles that I embrace. If I have to pick ONE favorite it would be my very first inspiration — my mother. She is an artist, designer and teacher and encouraged my creativity in all forms & mediums.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Carol Young, Alina B, Miranda Girard, Teodora Guererra and Dolores Tema

linzi-lynn //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-linzi-lynn-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-linzi-lynn-mobile.jpg Linzi Lynn | London, Lives in LA

What inspired you to become an artist?

I grew up singing and dancing professionally in the London theater. I got married and when I moved to the South of France and I decided to give up my career in the performing arts to have a family. Needing a new creative outlet, I bought an easel and paint and one painting became better than the next and so I got inspired!

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

Not unnecessary obstacles, just life! I worked in corporate America for many years to raise my son and survive after my husband died. I was determined to give up my job as it was stifling me creatively. I worked hard on a series of paintings every weekend and began selling paintings and being contacted by online publishers. I got remarried and I gave up my job. I am now a full-time artist!

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

I have won 5 American Art Awards, have exhibited in several galleries, had a painting on the TV series Grace and Frankie and some of my paintings have become bestsellers especially WINDSWEPT... WINDSWEPT has appeared on the cover of magazines and I sell Limited Edition hand-embellished giclees on my website.

Is there a particular female artist that you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

I enjoy Paula Rego's art. Her art is dark and complex and she is a painter of stories.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

If you are as determined as I have always been, then never give up! With hard work, patience and a little luck you can grow and be successful.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Jenny Saville, Paula Rego, Artemisia Gentileschi, Rosa Bonheur, Kathryn Stats

megan-majewski //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-megan-majewski-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-megan-majewski-mobile.jpg Megan Majewski | Vancouver, Canada

What inspired you to become an artist?

It is the only thing I ever wanted to do.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

I had to overcome the idea that being a full time artist wasn't possible and was only a unattainable dream.

If you didn’t need to sleep at night, what would you spend the time doing?

I would probably spend it working. So it's probably good that I sleep, you need to take breaks from your work to see it with new fresh eyes.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Take the chance, you can always do something else if being an artist full time doesn't work out, but you can't go back in time to take that chance.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

From some of my favourite books and art pieces in my home... Camille Rose Garcia, Mandy Tsung, Samantha Williams-Chapelsky, Redd Walitzki, Tara McPherson. Too bad it's only 5, I could go on and on.

sophie-wilkins https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/5women-sophie-wilkins.jpg https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/5women-sophie-wilkins-mobile.jpg Sophie Wilkins

sophie-wilkins


What is your greatest accomplishment?

My greatest accomplishment is to have persisted in believing my dream of living my passion.

What art piece (yours or another artist’s) do you think is the strongest piece to represent International Women’s Day? Why?

My homage to Frida Kahlo. She is for me a symbol of courage and one of the great women who has marked the history of art.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

The advice I would give is that women have a place in the visual arts, it is about believing in oneself.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Frida Kahlo, Camille Claudel, Betty Goodwin, Sandra Chevrier, Heidi Taillefer

viviana-gonzalez https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/5women-viviana-gonzalez.jpg https://www.icanvas.com/img/cms/5women-vivian-gonzalez-mobile.jpg Viviana Gonzalez


What inspired you to become an artist?

I think it began when I was still at school, at the age of eleven. I liked to make illustrations and logos, which is why I eventually studied Graphic Design. With time I perfected my technique and about three years ago I dedicated myself 100% to art.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

I've made art for bands and musicians (cover arts and posters). I love to do that because music is very important in my life, and has always been an inspiration.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

It's a celebration of all women coming together, celebrating being women.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Leonara Carrington, Frida Kahlo, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jay Defeo, Ethel Schwabacher

kahrianne-kerr //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-kahrianne-kerr-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-kahrianne-kerr-mobile.jpg Kahri | New York City

What inspired you to become an artist?

I have always loved making art and fashion and now I get to combine them both.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

I started painting again after my mom died a few years ago. It helped me deal with that loss and I've turned that art into my business.

Is there a particular female artist that you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

There are so many amazing female artists on Instagram. I love seeing their creations every day.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Just do it.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

I love Rosie the Riveter in any form.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Yayoi Kusama, Frida Kahlo, Desiree Mattsson, Pat McGrath, Tanya Ling

lisa-whitehouse //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-lisa-whitehouse-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-lisa-whitehouse-mobile.jpg Lisa Whitehouse | Winnipeg, Canada

What inspired you to become an artist?

I have always loved nature and wildlife. Im drawn to its beauty and energy.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

Time! I am a stay at home mom with 3 kids under 5 and finding the time in my busy schedule to paint can be a challenge.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

I am proud of the growth I have accomplished both as an artist but as a company. I have seen my skills evolve and change over the last few years and it has allowed me to reach more people with my art.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Just start playing around and do not hesitate to get your stuff out there! I think a lot of people fear rejection so they don’t share their art with others. I sort of went about the opposite way. I started sharing my art right away and got better as time went on. Now I look back at my earlier pieces and cringe a bit!

Is there a particular female artist that you’d like to highlight or acknowledge?

I love Iris Scott! I am just completing a reno in my home and I fully intend to buy one of her fox paintings for my home.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Iris Scott, Richelle Bergen, Kari Lehr, Holly Ann Friesen, Justine Barry

iris-scott //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-iris-scott-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-iris-scott-mobile.jpg Iris Scott | Brooklyn NYC


What inspired you to become an artist?

The same thing that inspires someone to fall in love. My instincts forced me into the profession, I really never had a choice in the matter.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional female artist?

Being told a thousand times over the years that there's no money in art and it's an impossible career. I overcame that obstacle by bringing my cost of living down to nearly nothing, by living in Asia for a year in a tiny studio. Online I sold my first artworks in 2010 for less than $100/ea. I raised the prices so slowly over time, 5% at a time, and never paid for advertising. Eventually I moved to New York. My approach was to let the career grow organically and sustainably, no heavy handed marketing needed, nor fancy gallery needed to "discover" me. I invested all my money earned back into materials from day 1, careful never to overprice the paintings. I continue that approach to this day. By 2016 originals can sell for upwards of $30k. Slow and steady wins the race, let the market show you what you're worth is my advice to aspiring artists.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

Being known worldwide for starting the finger painting revolution. Finger painting is now fine art.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

Artemisia Gentileschi's work "Judith Slaying Holofernes" - To me this is the ultimate metaphor for Women's Day on multiple levels, some even gruesome. Though Carravagio's painting came first, her rendering is markedly more fantastic. It brings to mind a few ideas for me. 1. Most people don't know a women painted this over 400 years ago. 2. It's depicting women aggressively defending themselves against a giant threat. 3. Most people just assume a man painted this, which is what Women's Day is all about. Women's Day is about getting up on rooftops and shouting, "Hey! I'm here! and I deserve equal pay for equal work!"

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Truly dedicate yourself to capturing Realism before trying to break the rules. Impressionism, surrealism, etc,. are actually more difficult than realism even though the Masters make it look easier. If you actually track Masters' careers back far enough you will find that all of them could paint realistically first.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Rosa Bonheur, Maria Ambramovic, Kiki Smith, Frida Kahlo, Artemisia Gentileschi

hallie-elizabeth //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-hallie-elizabeth-b.jpg //a.icanvas.com/images/artist-featured/5women-hallie-elizabeth-mobile.jpg Hallie Elizabeth | San Jose, California


What inspired you to become an artist?

Overall, a desire to process the emotions I feel... however, recently, after a very traumatic injury, I find myself inspired all over again. I am confined to my bed for months, and so I am inspired to explore my inner world through my artwork more than ever.

Did you have to overcome any unnecessary obstacles to become a professional artist?

I have had to overcome many obstacles, and I wouldn't anticipate that changing anytime soon. I don't believe any obstacle is unnecessary, though. They are all important facets to the whole of who we are.

Are there any accomplishments that you are most proud of?

To me, success isn't measured in awards or accolades. I am most proud of my perseverance and strength.

What art piece do you think is the strongest piece to represent strength & equality for women? Why?

I would currently choose my own piece, "the patron saint of the abused" -- because women are consistently abused and marginalized in this world, and yet we stay strong, we stay compassionate. We keep fighting.

What advice would you give to aspiring female artists?

Don't feel boxed in by what society expects women to create. Create whatever is in your heart. Make people uncomfortable.

Who are your #5WomenArtists?

Frida Kahlo, The women of CLAMP, Chiara Bautista, Stella Im Hultberg, Francesca Woodman, Anais Nin