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Flowers, beauty & femininity: Artists share inspiration behind their floral art | Dawn, KC, Christina|

Watch & Listen to this podcast Episode.

This week on our Arts to Hearts podcast, we have three guests who are featured in our book ‘101 Art Book: Floral Edition’. Our host Charuka Arora sits down with Dawn Bouchard, KC Christmas, and Christina Cowan to talk about the creative process behind their floral art, the hardest things they have faced as artists, and their experience of getting published in 101 Art Book.

Dawn Bouchard decided to follow her passion after her retirement as a school principal, and now this is what she wants to do all the time. For the past 5 years, she has been painting and experimenting with acrylic paints and soft pastels. KC Christmas is based in South Carolina, and even though is a part-time middle school teacher, her first love is creating things and painting which involves acrylic paint and paper collages. Christina Cowan is from Connecticut, and while she is a social worker, she has been transitioning to a full-time artist. Her work involves oil where she also incorporates collages, poetry, and quotes in order to tell a story.

For all three of our guests, the hardest part about being an artist is finding their style and managing the business side of it. This is something that rings true for many others, especially emerging artists, as the initial creative journey is all about finding your voice and how you can make the most out of your work.

The creative journey is not all about the challenges, but also the rewards where the entire experience of creating something can be satisfying. It is all about taking inspiration from different elements and then using your art to bring those ideas to life, and for KC, Christina, and Dawn, that is what it’s all about!

Our book ‘101 Art Book: Floral Edition’ has a stunning floral cover by Sonal Nathwani which also makes it a perfect addition to your coffee table. You can find inspiration in floral works by 101 artists and get mesmerized by their reimagination of something so simple yet so alluring; a flower. Order our book today!

Tune in to the full episode to listen to our three guests talk about their painting styles and the process that goes behind it all!

Charuka Arora is the founder of the Arts to Hearts Project and Host of the Arts to Hearts Podcast. She is also an acclaimed Indian artist known for her contemporary embellished paintings. Her unique blend of gouache, collage, embroidery, painting, and drawing explores the intersection of art, culture, heritage, and womanhood. Through her work, she tells stories of female strength and encapsulates them in pieces that can be treasured for generations.

 Arts to Hearts Project Gallery + Studio

Charuka’s work draws inspiration from Hindu mythology, recognizing women as vessels of Shakti, the cosmic energy. She beautifully portrays powerful goddesses like Durga Maa riding a tiger or lion, symbolizing their unlimited power to protect virtue and combat evil.

Through her art, Charuka invites us into the world of women, showcasing their beauty, strength, and resilience. Her creations not only exhibit exceptional talent but also serve as an inspiration and a symbol of hope for those challenging societal norms.

About Arts to Hearts Project Gallery + Studio

Arts to Hearts Podcast is a show delving into the lives and passions of renowned artists. From running creative businesses and studio art practices to cultivating a successful mindset, Charuka Arora engages in heartfelt conversations with her guests. Experience your personal happy hour with your favorite artists, right in your studio.

Through candid discussions, Charuka and her guests reveal the joys and challenges of a vibrant creative life, both within and beyond our studios. Get ready to be inspired and uplifted as you tune in.

KC Christmas

floral art

KC Christmas is a contemporary painter and collage artist living and working in South Carolina.  Known for her unique interpretations of florals, she takes inspiration from the Old Masters of art history and combines them with current, relevant topics.  Her work explores the depth of human emotion and complexity – from snarky humor to meditative worship.

Her work has been exhibited in many shows across the United States as well as other countries including Egypt and the United Kingdom. Recently, she had her debut solo show “Selah” in Greenville, South Carolina. She has won multiple awards with her works and earned a residency with the South Carolina State Parks in 2022. She has also been published in multiple sources including Tapas Magazine and TWIRL: a Decade of Artist Interviews.

Dawn Bouchard

I am an award winning Artist who lives in the small Canadian town of Brockville, Ontario.  I have always had a love of drawing and creating art pieces. As a young person spending time painting or drawing gave me a sense of purpose. When I started my own family, my opportunities to continue painting became a distant memory. In my career as a teacher and principal teaching art to my students allowed me to continue to fulfill my creative needs. Leading up to retirement I was able to pick up my paint brushes again and truly renew my earlier passions. In the last number of years painting has truly consumed me.

Christina Cowan

Christina Cowan is an artist and licensed master social worker.

This week, our three guests are among the 101 artists who have been featured in our ‘101 Art Book: Floral Edition’. The book focuses on the theme of flowers and vividly captures each detail, color, and emotion. Dawn, KC, and Christina share their love for floral art and talk about the creative process that went into their featured artworks.

The idea behind the floral art

When we look at any piece of art, we often wonder what went on behind the scenes. What was the artist’s process and why s/he chose that specific subject? For Dawn Bouchard, her creative process varies.  Whether she is working with pastels or acrylics, she is mainly attracted to florals and landscapes. 

Because she is drawn to bright vibrant colors, Dawn likes to create a contrast between warm colors (her subject matter) and cool colors (as background). With soft edges, her paintings end up looking like a portrait mode photo. Her inspiration is often from nature, where she wants to capture something that others may not notice. Dawn believes that there are infinite small fleeting details that may be beautiful, but we take them for granted, and through her work she wants to concentrate on those nuances and convert them into lasting moments.

KC is hugely inspired by art history, florals, and nature and loves to combine these elements. Her tone is usually meditative and peaceful or snarky, two different aspects of her personality that she loves exploring. Her artistic process is inspired by art history and floral art as she believes that art history shows our humanity and all the different experiences that humanity has gone through, something that wants to tap into through her work. Her featured piece ‘Hope’ in the floral book is a direct reflection of that. Finding connections from the past and adding a twist to it, that is KC’s thing. She loves going through old art history books cutting things out and putting them together next to each other.

For Christina Cowan, her focus is more on what she finds inspiring. For her, thinking in her brain can be difficult so she creates sources on Pixelmator as it allows her to pull things together. Her inspiration comes from women in elegant poses and visuals that speak about happiness, uplifting feelings, and love. Like our other two guests, she is also attracted to florals where she first starts with sketching and then goes into incorporating things that tell a story. Being open to your feminine side is what Christina’s work is all about!

Does being a woman impact their art?

Being a woman means that you have multiple roles. As a female artist, you are also a mother, a sister, and a caregiver. Women have more presence in art right now than they had historically, and while our guests don’t really think too much about being women in arts, they do feel fortunate to be working in a time with more opportunities.

On the other hand, we must also acknowledge how being a female can have an impact on our art. For Dawn, being a caregiver for her grandchildren means that she has to work to carve out the time for her art, while her father, who was also an artist, had unlimited time to work on his creative passion. And so it all boils down to how, as women, we do have expectations regarding how we spend our time. For Christina and KC, it is pretty much the same, where over time, their art has granted them confidence.

Hardest part about being an artist

For Dawn, the hardest part about being an artist is finding the time and trying to find her style and making it recognizable as her work keeps morphing and changing.. It is all about finding consistency that is recognizable to her style, and because she paints tightly, it takes her an extra amount of time. She struggles to find a balance where she can paint more freely and loosely.

For Christina, finding her style was also hard, especially in the beginning, and it held her back for a long time. Now, while she is getting better at finding her momentum, for her finding an audience is another challenge she must face. Even though she is reaching people through her art, they do not seem to have space or can’t afford to buy her art, so she thinks that reaching the right audience or collectors is the trickiest part. KC resonates with this as she too finds the business side to be the hardest thing she has to deal with. It’s challenging to tick all the right boxes and create a balance where you are channeling your creativity which also gets more people to see your work.

On getting published in 101 Art Book

Talking about their published work in 101 Art Book, Dawn talks about her piece ‘Sunkissed petals’, and the reason why she was able to create that image was that she was instantly attracted to how translucent the petals looked in the sun along with the overlap of shadow and light. She refers to being included in the 101 Art Book as a huge honor because it has boosted her confidence immensely.

Christina’s artwork in 101 Art Book is ‘Table for 2’, a still-life part of a series she did on floral art where she focused on the theme of self-love. Her subject revolves around the quote that it’s ‘all about setting your finest china whether you are inviting someone else or just yourself’. In today’s world, such an artwork is a great reminder that you must always do the best for yourself because you deserve it. Being part of a book (101 Art Book) that’s centered on a common theme makes her feel included and she feels that it’s a good representation of her work.

KC’s featured piece stems from a series of works where she was working through the alphabets and trying to think of words she wanted to manifest in her own life such as abundance, justice, etc. Hope was one of those words and is also one of her favorites from the series of the 26 artworks she made. For her, being in the 101 Art Book is an honor as she loves to have the opportunity to be included in a book with so many other talented people.

Our three guests offer a great example of what it is like to follow your dreams, and that no matter how challenging it may seem, you must always follow your heart! Christina and Dawn are part of the women in arts network. You can check out Dawn’s work on her Instagram and website.  Christiana is on Instagram as well, and her website will be up in a month. KC can be reached on both her Instagram as well as her website.

To read up more about Arts to Hearts Podcast and its episodes, click here.


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