My passion for working with wood, stained glass and metals is reflected in my pieces. For over 10 years I exhibited at both art and craft shows gaining a love for working with my hands.
An Interview with Marilyn of Gala Gardens
When did you first start your craft?
Over 25 years ago I decided to take a night class offered at a local High School. The class was so much fun I couldn't wait to go each week. Never would I have dreamed it would lead me here.
How did you discover your talent?
That took some time to realize. I guess it hit me when I finally had some people in awe of my work.
The name is pretty cool, what made you decide on this?
That was painful and simply embarrassing. Brainstorming for several days only left me at the mercy of my daughter who squashed every creative idea I had. Within two minutes she blurted "galagardens" and walked away laughing.
What drives you to create?
At night when my mind is racing from the day I go to work. It relaxes me, I finish totally drained and sleep like a baby. Plus it's cheaper than therapy.
How do you get inspired?
Many, many sources. The work of Tiffany is so rewarding to read and reconstruct the designs done by his artists. If he can blow up a kiln and still pursue his dreams well then there's not much damage I can do. Walking through my gardens is another great source. There is always something new to create.
How would you describe your style?
Nature Inspired. We garden organically and have great respect for nature.
What is your favorite part about your creative process?
When someone else gasps when viewing a creation.
What are your favorite items?
Wow, tough choice. That would have to be the orchids. That started last summer when I picked up a orchid plant in clearance at our local grocery store. Not knowing where to put it, I placed it in a twig birdhouse outside under a weeping cherry tree and basically forgot all about it. It thrived under the canopy of the weeping cherry and bloomed all summer.
What environment do you like to work in?
Hawaii would be nice no? I work constantly throughout the day, it never stops. There are note pads and drawings all over because if I don't put it down right away, once i'm distracted it will be gone forever. My ideal environment is to work when it's quiet and have a window open to hear the crickets and tree frogs at night.
How much time do you spend in the studio?
At least 3 hours a day. I love the days when I can take my time and work longer.
Who are some of your biggest influences, artistically or personally?
By far it's the work and life of Tiffany. It's amazing how they constructed lamps then. The craft is so much easier today.
What are you currently working on?
You won't be too surprised, Christmas designs. There is going to be a solid red orchid with dark green leaves that i'm getting together. Also some other designs with snowmen. Fall is already done just waiting for the perfect time to put them out.
What are your plans for the near future?
Work as hard as I can. These great times won't last forever. Grab life while you can!
What was the best advice given to you as an artist?
Hmm. There are so many people that give their advice that's hard to pin down. There is no one defining moment. I guess to say the best would be "get to work"!