August 30, 2011

Artist Interview: Christas Designs

Christa has been a good friend of mine for years and years. A few months ago, she basically erupted with these beautiful doggie portraits, and she's been busy as a bee ever since. Her heart is as equally beautiful as her art. Check out my interview with her below.

Where are you from and how did you get started doing art?

I am from the rural farmlands outside of State College, PA. I grew up in a little town called Bellefonte. It's a beautiful little town with amazing and inspiring historic architecture. Currently I live in Butler, PA a town about an hour north of Pittsburgh.

I grew up drawing. In fact one of my very first drawings at the age of three, was of a cat. My mom says I titled it "fat cat". It's funny: looking back on my childhood, my primary subject of choice was dogs, horses and cats (...and if I wasn't drawing a horse or a dog I was acting like one. Another story for another time.). So, it's kind of ironic that my subject matter has carried over into my adult life and now I get the privilege of painting others beloved animals. It's pretty great!

When did you first discover your creative talents?
My family says that I have always been an outside-of-the-box kind of thinker; even as a little girl. I would always find ways to creatively use normal objects in a different ways.
The latest light bulb moment occurred late this spring while laying in bed . My friend had suddenly lost a Great Dane and I was heartbroken for her. She was one of the very first people to help me and introduce me to Great Danes. So I knew I wanted to do something nice for her in remembrance of her sweet dog. I laid there thinking and it was truly a lighting strike moment. After a sleepless night of thinking thru the process I sat down the next day to execute painting for her. It turned out great and she and her family loved it. Since then it has spiraled out of control (in a good way). That one creative idea has lead to so many incredible opportunities and I am thankful.

What inspires you?

Life. Love. Loyalty. There is something so fascinating to me about the bond that we have with our animals. The unconditional love between human and animal is so pure and so real that it blows my mind.

What is your favorite thing about being an artist?

I love being able to share and express a piece of my heart and mind with others in a creative format. I also love creating art out of something that is old and unwanted. I like giving purpose to broken-down material, allowing it to serve as a canvas for a painting of someone's beloved, furry family member. It brings me great joy.

What is your dream project?

Honestly this might sound cheesy...but anytime I can help someone cherish or honor the life and love they have shared with one of God's creature is a dream project.

Professionally, what is your goal?

I want to work hard, have integrity and execute my art with excellence. Wherever that takes me is great-- I am along for the ride.

What memorable responses have you had to your work?

A client telling me that the commissioned piece of art I painted replaced the family photo on the wall. That made me smile!

Describe a real-life situation that inspired you.

I shared in a previous answer about my friend that lost a Great Dane. That is one of the reasons I have started this; to honor and remember our special friends. I have also been inspired by my own animals past and present. Almost four years ago my husband and I had to lay our first Great Dane, Amelia to rest. That was one of the most difficult things I have had to do. So, I want to help others through that pain and grief by creating a special piece of art that they can connect with on a soulful level.

Why do you do what you do?

I do this because it brings me joy and gives me another meaningful creative outlet.

Lastly, any advice for an artist just starting out?

Be inspired by the simple and pure things in life.

Christa is such an inspiration to me.
I hope you got to know her a bit in this little interview!

Be sure to join her on facebook HERE.
Also, visit her etsy shop HEREwhere you can get a hold of your own print or original! 
Christa also does custom dog portraits! If you are interested contact her at or