Featured Artist: Nikinapalm
Nikinapalm’s bright designs are decorated in unique ink washes and dazzling colors. Each design reveals mysteries that are veiled by the first flash of color; her audience can’t help but study each design over and over again to discover the hidden horns, sharp teeth, and extra eyeballs.
Nikinapalm admits that Oregon is her “forever home” and — although she’d also enjoy living somewhere else — she will always come back to Oregon because of the diverse terrain, the beautiful seasons and, most importantly, her history there.
She shares that creativity is “everything” to her because it is a way of making sense of emotions, experimenting with ideas, and even connecting with the world around her. She confesses that “I don't think I would continue to function without at least some creative outlet.” In fact — even though she sometimes knows where her creative process will take her — she believes that the “journey is always very intuitive” and even she is surprised by where it leads.
She loves working with pre-treated paper like coffee staining or “just a watercolor mess” because it removes some of the fear associated with a blank page and “it has this way of kind of telling you what it wants on it.” She trusts that although an art piece might feel like it is “ugly or boring or uninspired” that it still deserves to be finished. She enjoys painting with ink washes or watercolor but jokes that she has a “horrible habit of putting my paintbrushes in my mouth, haha!”
Nikinapalm is not only interested in the highly ornamental style of the Rococo Period in the 1700s, but she also finds inspiration from artists who can “grow and get better while staying true to themselves”; she hopes to follow in their footsteps someday. However, her greatest influence — and maybe even her muse — is Peter S. Beagle’s fantasy novel, The Last Unicorn, which she reads “at least once a year.”
Nikinapalm hopes that — by making art that she loves — she will encourage others to be creative as well. However, her philosophy that “while art CAN say big important things, it doesn't necessarily have to to have value” is a perfect reminder of what art can be to people. She reminds us that the greatest value in art is that it can mean something different to everyone.