Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Catherine Anderson, Photographer & Mixed Media Artist, Tells Her Story

It has been an interesting journey from attorney to photography franchise owner to creativity workshop facilitator and artist. The phrase “Feel the fear and do it anyway” has been my constant mantra. It is always a stretch to move from something you know to living at your creative edge. I believe courage is more important than talent when living a creative life. It takes courage to be a beginner again, to put your work out into the world, and to share your inner self with others. And that is what I believe our art is – a sharing of our soul.

My creative work is constantly evolving, and I love working in different media - photography, collage, mixed media art journaling – as I find that the forms influence and inform each other. Everything I create I do for myself as an attempt to get to know myself better and to make sense of the world. I am constantly in awe of the beauty of the world we live in and try to convey this in the images I make.

This collage was created for the book, Inspirational Quotes Illustrated: Art and Words to Motivate by Lesley Riley. It speaks to me of the hundreds of creative ideas out in the world which are constantly visiting us, and the need to focus on what is right in front of you to bring an idea into reality.

This digital image was made using papers I created for my art journals, together with a photograph of the nautilus shell, a symbol I find very meaningful. Spirals often find their way into my work, and the labyrinth is a pattern that speaks deeply to me. The path of the labyrinth is a metaphor for the journey of life, its twists and turns, feeling lost. However, because there is only one path in to the center of the labyrinth, it is also a symbol for trusting that you are exactly where you are meant to be.

I have inserted my photographs along the path of this classical labyrinth design. I’m drawn to photographing things that remind me of my connection to the earth and to the heavens, images that touch my soul in a symbolic way. Using this image as a finger labyrinth allows me to let the images inform my inner and outer journey.

The door is another symbolic image that resonates with me. I photograph doors everywhere I go and use them in my art journals and on my SoulCollage® cards. I have amassed a large collection of doors from India, Italy, France, Africa, Ireland and many other places. I love adding quotes to the images, as I often find that a quote will deepen the images’ meaning, while at the same time the image deepens the meaning of the quote. Together, the words and image create something more meaningful.

The iPhone camera has opened up a whole new world for all of us. Now we always have a camera with us and can record moments of beauty that appear in unexpected moments. I particularly love using a macro-lens on my iPhone as it opens me up to a new way of seeing, a fresh perspective. This photograph of bubbles in a glass of wine is something we would not usually notice, and yet what beauty we can find when we take the time to see!

My love of photography led me to study the history of photography and I became obsessed with vintage photographs, collecting them wherever I could find them and giving them new life in my paper and sewn collages. There is something magical about collecting these old forgotten moments in time and turning them into new moments of inspiration. This little muse talks about what I love to do most, which is encourage others to find their own creative passions. I really believe in the power of creativity to enhance our life in so many ways – by encouraging mindfulness and giving us a way to sit quietly with oneself and process the confusion of the everyday in a life-affirming way.

May you find a way to express your own unique creativity in our world -- Catherine

This is Week 5 of 52 Artists in 52 Weeks. Thank you for reading and sharing Catherine’s post today.  To connect with her on social media, please use the following links:


The Creative Photographer Blog:





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