We had the good fortune of connecting with Karen Sikie and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Karen, how do you think about risk?
I used to think that risk was doing something that was hard, out of reach, or something physically dangerous like diving with sharks. However, I have shifted my idea of risk. I am an artist and I spent most of my career creating art to please others. If no one liked my work, I felt not good enough.
Now I choose to RISK being my authentic self because if I don’t, I will not fully understand who I am as an artist. I am no longer willing to take that risk. For me being an artist is not separate from my life. It is all blended together. So, this idea; of being authentic, is now moving into all areas of my life.
Alright, so let’s move onto what sets you apart professionally?
What sets me apart from other artists is my process and my point of view. I developed a highly specialized form of collage I call Paper Mosaics. It is a very precise and meticulous process that pieces together an image with hand cut papers. My muse is the natural world, which I consider one of my great teachers. No matter what I look at, a seed, the clouds, a tree there is always inspiration and wisdom there that helps inform my art and navigate my life.
I am most proud of my skill at doing commissions for my collectors. I know how to work with in parameters but also be myself, which is why they hired me. I also do realistic and abstract work which offers variety and options for my collectors.
What got you where you are today?
I am where I am today because of the love of my family and friends, and the belief in myself. Also, my business practice is to just show up! When I do that consistently things will flow and unfold. I love trusting the process.
Also, I have to give a shout out to my art buddy Gwen Samuels, a fellow artist. She and I check in on our work and our business and without her insights and just listening to me when I need to vent, I would not be where I am today.
What I want the world to know about me?
I want the world to know that I see my art as a reminder to all of us that we are a part of the natural world. When we feel connected to something, we tend to care about it. I am always learning to tread lightly on this magnificent planet that is such a gift. That is the message of my life and my art.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I live in southern California, so I am close to the ocean, the mountains and dessert. We would defiantly take long walks preferable with dogs out into nature. Kenneth Hahn Park is a regular stop for me, and the Palos Verdes Cliffs offers amazing views of the South Bay. However, my favorite place to hang out with friends is around my fire pit enjoying food and conversation under the stars.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My family and friends are an incredible support system. Their love and support have been one of the great joys of my life. I had a Mom who always believed in me to become an artist which helped me to believe in myself. My daughter who is currently working with me in my business has been a tremendous asset! She is smart, insightful, and talented. I so appreciate her and of course my art buddy Gwen.
I also appreciate the wisdom that I have gained through the many books that have supported my spiritual journey. My current top three in rotation are: The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, Soul Shifts by Barbara De Angelis and Power Manifesting by Nick Breau. But these are a few in my vast library that include authors like Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, Marianne Williamson, Louise Hay and so many others.