Adrianne Hawthorne runs the Chicago art studio called Ponnopozz, where she sells her own art along with works by other artists. A self-taught artist, Adrianne has a background in graphic design and supports small businesses, particularly those that are women-led and/or Black-owned. Adrianne uses tarot as a means for looking inside herself and for providing clarity on life situations, and she seeks to pass this curiosity and exploration on to others. She is the artist behind Create Your Own Tarot Decks. We asked Adrianne a few question about her artistic process.
Quarto Creates: How did you first become interested in painting?
Adrianne Hawthorne: I had quit my job and was feeling stifled as far as being able to express myself creatively.
One afternoon, I went to an art supply shop to buy whatever spoke to me. Painting felt perfect – something messy and imperfect that I could do with my hands. So, that’s how it started.
QC: What is your advice for those who want to try it but aren’t sure where to start?
Don’t think about selling your piece, just think about getting whatever is inside your head out and on paper/canvas or whatever material you choose.
QC: What artists do you look to for inspiration?
AH: I love the work of Ashley Mary and Amber Vittoria.
Their work is colorful and joyful and both are always exploring new ways to evolve their work. That’s something I want to get better at. I also admire Justina Blakeney of the Jungalow. She’s got great tips on how to be yourself and create a space that feels like you.
QC: What is the biggest challenge you face while working on an art project?
AH: I struggle with perfectionism so it’s hard for me to play.
Trying new things takes a lot of internal pep talk because I’m always afraid other people won’t like my work or that it won’t sell. And those aren’t great goals to have when you’re simply trying to be creative.
QC: What is the most important lesson you’ve learned from creating?
AH: That it is really, really hard!
Sometimes the creativity flows easily but most of the time, it does not. Life gets in the way. It’s important to make time to create and to be open about what may come of the process. Learning to silence your inner critic is key.