We were thrilled to hear that this year’s featured artist for Whistler Blackcomb Artist Series was Andrea Mueller, a contemporary artist, art instructor and long-time Whistler local.
Like many people who live in this little mountain town, Andrea is a bit of a wild child. Constantly covered in paint, she spends most of her time either up in the mountains exploring or down in the valley creating in her studio.
We recently had the chance to chat with Andrea about her Whistler Blackcomb Artist Series feature and her latest work. Read on as Andrea gives us a glimpse into her colourful and creative world.
If you could describe Andrea Mueller, the artist, in three words, what would they be?
Fun. Ambitious. Energetic.
You must be so excited to be Whistler Blackcomb’s featured artist for 2019! Could you give us a bit of a run down about what the honour entails?
I am really excited to be Whistler Blackcomb’s Feature artist this year! I designed three different images for them, which there designers then applied to a variety of different products from hats, to mugs to hoodies. You can find them at the Round House on Whistler Mountain, at Essentially Blackcomb in the Carleton Lodge at the base of the Whistler Gondola and at the Base Two Whistler Blackcomb Shop in the Upper Village. Whistler Blackcomb and Cutting Edge Signs created some amazing promo pieces that include some more of my work and photos of me painting that go with the displays. I am looking forward to doing some live painting up at the Round House later this summer.
In addition to being Whistler Blackcomb’s featured artist for this year, you’ve also recently completed some pieces that are featured on four different models of Hoji skis. Any other exciting projects coming up?
It was really fun working with Eric Hjorleifson (Hoji) and the team of 4FRNT skis this fall to create the images for their 2020 line coming out this August! I did four full size canvas paintings that the awesome design team turned into the top sheets for the Hoji line. At the moment I have a few commissions that I am working on and I have just started taking courses in business entrepreneurship to step up my self-employment game. After that I am really looking forward to working on some new paintings I have had brewing in my mind that are just for me and we will see where it all goes from there.
Has your art or your approach to it changed since we last spoke?
I have definitely tried to take a more serious approach to painting and making it more of a business – but I recognize that can also take the fun out of creating – so now that the ball is rolling, I am excited to work on something a little different. I love painting animals and recently I have taken to painting en Plein Air (onsite) in the woods, by the ocean and in the mountains. I will continue to do that, but I have a few things up my sleeve that people might not expect and I cannot wait to learn, grow, play and create something new.
In terms of your work, what have you been particularly excited about lately?
I am excited to do less administration (that’s what happens when art becomes your full time gig) and do more creating! I am really looking forward to working on some more mixed media work, change up my colour pallet and to get more of what is inside my head out into the World. It’s easy to get caught up in a style that people associate you with which for me us bright colourful animals and that can seem very limiting as an artist. I have always been open to shifting my subject matter, colours and style and am really excited for a shift and do something just for me without any intention of what might come out of it, what people might think about it or if I am going to be able to sell it. Art for art sake! Let’s do this!
Any advice for up and coming artists, or people who have just started to pick up a brush?
Make a mark. Any mark on that canvas. People often tell me that is what scares them the most and is what stops them from painting. They are afraid to take the first step. I say, who cares, make a mark, make something beautiful, make something terrible, make something ugly. Just make something. You will always learn from everything you create and you can always paint over it or smash it for that matter. Then grow from what you just made and keep on making.
And – come to a Paint Night, take a workshop or paint with friends. These things will all motivate and inspire you.
Do you have any fresh new favourite artists you follow on Instagram?
5% of all proceeds from the Whistler Blackcomb Artist Series will be donated to the Whistler Blackcomb Foundation. Collection available at the Roundhouse Lodge, Essentially Blackcomb in the Carleton Lodge and Blackcomb Ski And Sport in the Blackcomb Daylodge.
Andrea is a contemporary artist and art instructor based in Whistler. Her work is characterized by bold colors, messy loose brush strokes, and darkly playful imagery. Her work examines the relationship and connection between all things including humans, animals, memory, language, belief systems, the environment and the impact these have on one another.