Innovative Aesthetics sat down with Elise Peterson to discuss her artwork and passion, her innovation and inspirations, and her aspirations.
Where are you from?
I always get funny when people ask me about this question. DC, and also Georgia - but DC is home.
What are you passionate about?
Self-expression, and connecting to people.
Did your hometown influence you to create artwork?
Definitely. Definitely because when I was living in DC it was when I started painting graffiti. I was teaching at the time, going to school at Howard. So graffiti was my own thing that I had control over. It wasn't just the act of creating, I had to go out and it was dark, so I got to see the city in a different way. That's what made me fall back in love with DC and made it home. The people I probably wouldn't have close relationships with I formed bonds with over graffiti, it was awesome.
How would you describe your work?
So I was working a 9 to 5 which is completely out of the norm for me, I was confined to a desk. I got back on Tumblr heavy, pulling images of interiors and photography that I liked, and I'd cut out images of myself to make a collage. I got the idea to create one a day, featuring liberated black people who I felt were prolific. So that's how "Black Folk" started, it was just my meaningful break during work that I'd make sure to have done by a certain time each day. They just started to flow, and things actually evolved from there.
What message do you want to portray through your work?
I think what makes your work successful is work that people can see themselves in. It's important to make work that makes people feel a sense of familiarity or inspired, or just to feel something.
What makes you innovative?
I would like to say that I follow my intuition, that's something that no one else can do. I try to stay to my gut feeling, I do it when and I'm cooking and shopping. So I try to do the same thing with my artwork.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I hope to be in a space where I can live comfortably just creating. Still, want to be writing and creating visual art. I want to make meaningful work that people can enjoy for a long time. I want to be happy with my work and sustain myself because that's the goal (laughs).
Also, please check out her sculpture pillows 'The Girlfriend Experience' aka 'Pussy Pillows' which are now on view at the 99 Cent Plus Gallery from now until June 14th, 2015