I began teaching myself to paint in 2008 as I began to find some freedom from long term depression.
No matter what my internal dialogue is for the moment, painting is my method of processing my world and documenting how I am being unmade and remade by a wild and beautiful Creator. What a ride.
All the play- filled paths I've followed since 2008 have led me to my own way of painting and seeing- my way of creating. Upon closer inspection, you can see playful layer upon layer of story-telling in the backgrounds, and it's these layers that eventually yield the quirk-ily beautiful characters and scenes that make you stop long enough to smile, to think, to remember, to laugh, to feel life in all of its bitter-sweetness, and to take heart in the midst of it all. My prayer is that the art that comes out of my life will renew your sense of Wonder in the midst of a world that has so many dark places.
“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows, but take heart [be encouraged!!!], because I have overcome the world.”
— ~Jesus, the Original Wonder Worker, John 16:33 NLT
I am named after a "French" anti-perspirant (yep- you read that correctly), "Mistelle", found in a grocery store aisle of my small West Texas hometown. My mom, the teacher, worked her phonetic (umm...not so much) magic on the original spelling and ended up with "Mystele", which most people now fail to pronounce correctly, leaving me with the life-long addendum, "It rhymes with Michelle." To top off the whole name thing, I married a guy from Illinois with Norwegian heritage...Needless to say, I now have to pronounce and spell my entire name all. the. time. HAH! This guy and I have two beautiful works of art in the form of teenage boys.
- the raw expression & time-worn appeal of folk art in combination with cheerful, vintage inspired colors (red + pink + aqua= LOVE)
- the landscape and culture of Northwest Texas where I grew up (riding horses with my dad, the stories from my mom's childhood and her love of antiques and vintage goodies, both of my grandmothers' humble homes and good cooking, Miss Rosie's catfish and Aunt Mary Jane's peach cobbler)
- what happens between the beginning and the end of a painting or creative project- totally smitten. There is so much "space" to learn and listen during the act of creating...Man! The wonder of it all fuels my soul for miles and miles.
- life with Jesus, everyday life from world events to daily tasks, the people I love