To say that I love the art of Tiel Seivl-Keevers is an understatement. I admired Tiel’s beautifully layered and detailed work for some time before I managed to buy one of her paintings which now hangs opposite my bed. I never tire of looking at it. So it’s lovely to be able to feature Tiel in my Space to Create series. I hope you enjoy a glimpse into her creative space and world, and this interview with her – I especially love her analogy about creativity and surfing.
Click on the link below for the full post…
Where do you live?
I am based in Brisbane with my family. We live close to the city but our house sits on a block adjacent to the Brisbane River surrounded by masses of flora and fauna so it feels a little bucolic. We have plenty of trees to climb, a long driveway to roller skate and ride the bikes, and heaps of room for our three dachshunds, Kransky, Sizzles and Sesame to chase our children Ari, 10 and Milena, 9. Our house was designed by architect, John Dalton in the 60s and we are about to embark on some renovation work to get it looking sharp again.
Where do you create?
Well right now, I have a corner in our very large bedroom where I work. It is surrounded by lots of windows where the eastern sun spreads from morning to night. Very soon we are going to build a wall and entrance so that it will be a separate studio space from the house…I can’t wait.
When do you create? Is it a full time job?
That is a tricky question. I could work all day and sometimes all night. But I balance the parenting role out with my creative work, so it is all over the place. I attempt to make or do something every week day, some days are just more rewarding than others. So, yes it is a full time job, that I would just love to make more full.
I work to a school term. It helps me work diligently to my goals. Come school holidays, I step back and concentrate more on the children and the house. I’m very fortunate that I am able to do this, but it also frustrates me that I have to stop being actively creative at times.
What path led you to this creative place?
I completed a Bachelor of Visual Arts degree straight out of school and majored in printmaking. From there I started to become interested in graphic design and so I worked as a designer for awhile then moved to a small town where jobs in this field were hard to come by. So I started teaching TAFE and University students Art, Design and Multimedia. Then we moved to Melbourne where I continued to teach at Swinburne whilst I did some freelance work. After our first child, and a change in plans for my husband’s work, we ended back in Queensland and I started working seriously on my freelance career. After a few years of figuring out if I wanted to be a graphic designer, an illustrator, or an artist…I chose the latter. I still design and illustrate for people, but only when I really like the brief. So painting is where I am for now.
What’s your elevator pitch? How do you describe what you do?
I am a small scale artist who is passionate about painting and creating images based on nature and change. I create art on paper, wood and canvas and produce work to all sizes that can be bought directly from my website, through retail outlets, galleries or you can commission an original painting by contacting me.
How would you describe yourself in six words?
I asked 6 friends and chose one from each of their answers.
Creative, genuine, driven, pragmatic, loyal, organic. (and a kick arse coffee maker, but that’s seven)
Where do you find inspiration and motivation?
When I walk, especially in gardens and the bush… not that I go bush walking often. We have a large and well established garden, and often just walking from one end to the other offers many visual treats. Also the beach. Art books and book shops. Holidays to new lands where the colours, flora and fauna are different. The sesaons and their changes.
All images: Tiel Seivl-Keevers.
What are the essential items in your workspace?
Good quality art rag paper. Ink and brushes. Sharp tools for scratching and mark making. My computer and my Epson printer. Stennelier oil pastels, acrylics and a slave to clean my brushes… the last one is just a wish.
What advice do you have for aspiring creatives?
Don’t give up. Don’t give in to that voice in your head that says you can’t do this. Know that the everyday, ordinary life will often win the battle, but if you love being creative, then let yourself shine and be proud of what you do. The more you do this, the better you will be and the happier you will be in your heart.
I often use the analogy of surfing. (Not that I surf, that would be just hilarious to watch.) There are good waves and bad waves… and sometimes if you keep surfing, you’ll catch a few amazing waves. But even on the bad surf days… you’re still surfing, and that’s a good thing.
Do you have a dream that you’d love to fulfill?
To exhibit more. To have two x 12hr days of uninterrupted studio time each week. To show my children that what I do isn’t just a passionate hobby, but a successful and rewarding job.
Thanks so much Tiel for sharing your work and for this insight into your creative world.
I hope you enjoyed this post. Catch up on previous posts in this series of Space to Create.