Here are our incredible 2016 Official Alchemists!
Rachel Whetzel, Alchemist Team Coordinator: I specialize in creativity and mixed media art through thrifting, up-cycling, re-purposing and new design. I am the owner of A Year in the Life of an Art Journal and Monday Mugshots! I am: Thrift junkie. Free Spirit. Believer. Artist. Photographer. Mom to boys. Rust Lover. Worm Farmer. Blogger. Creative Soul. Rule Bender. Spider Saver. Coffee Drinker. Cream Lover. Chook Farmer. Goat Milker. Sailor Mouth. Music Listener. Phone Talker. Garden Grower. Beek. Mess Maker. Risk Taker. Chewy Mom. Gritty Gramma. Good Intender.
Chantal Johnson: I am so excited to be an Alchemist for Gauche Alchemy! My heritage is one of Southern hospitality and European style but my heart is pure Texan!! My home, as well as my art, resound with sentiments from a joyful, grateful spirit to that of faith and hope mixed with a touch of wonder. I love all things that can inspire others to find joy in the everyday. As a mixed media artist/teacher and designer, my many passions include gardening, interior decorating, crocheting, needlework, cooking, swimming, sewing, jewelry design, metal and wire work, paper arts, creating patinas and textures and of course treasure hunting (antiques). Most days you will find me creating in my Art Studio that my husband and I designed together.
Rebecca Janousek: I have been making art since I was in junior high school, scrapbooking for over ten years and art journaling for about six years now. I am a bit of a craft-a-holic. I make everything from purses to journals to jewelry and altered art as well as anything in between! Art journaling is my love and passion and I hope to one day teach classes and share my love for it. Besides crafting I love to read, go shopping, spend time with family and spend time outdoors. I am married, have five dogs and am a preschool teacher full time.
When I started to take crochet seriously I lived thousands of miles away from my mom. So I picked up a book ‘The Happy Hooker’ to brush up on some additional crochet skills. I made many scarfs at first. Then I started making crochet jewelry. I added beads to thin crochet thread. Then I took a sewing class. A soldering class. A stamping workshop. A collage workshop. A zentangle workshop. I took everything that looked interesting enough that I could expand on.
Nowadays in my small crafting studio at the back of our home you will find: two sewing machines, a cabinet full of fabric and textiles so to repurpose, a suitcase full of beads, a shelf of paints, several boxes of stamps, boxes of ribbons, trinkets and who knows what else.
Erena DiGonis: Hello! My name is Erena and I live in New York. I come from a family in the arts, growing up in my mother’s studio where I had my hands and imagination in and on materials of every kind. I put my creativity in the background as I pursued an education and career as a psychotherapist. Over the last few years, I have incorporated the creative process and love of materials into my patient care. Art heals and soothes the soul. I love bold, fresh, modern juicy color. My favorite projects are collage, mixed media, the concept of layers, the complexity of personalities of various materials, colors, and textures. I love ATCs, altered art (such as matchbooks and puzzle pieces), postcards, and some art journaling. I love playing outside of the box, the place where creativity lives!
Bea Grob: Looking forward to share some of my new adventures with Gauche Alchemy. I’m a Mixed Media Artist and formerly handweaver from Switzerland. Color was and is always the reason for me to work, whether with threads, on canvas or with paper. I have passed several Fibre and Art related educations, but also commercial school or the latest addition Educations for Educators Level 1. I’m also the president of the association Handwerkkunst, which runs every year one of the biggest Art & Craft shows in Switzerland, with about 60 to 70 artists in an old Knightshouse. You can follow me on my www.facebook.com/BeaGrob
Jackie Jimerson: I’ve been surrounded by crafting my entire life, with my grandmother being a major contributor. I remember her saying, “I’ll try anything once.”, and I believe, even now, that’s what nurtures my desire to continuously learn new crafts and techniques. Currently, my creative journey has taken me down the path of Zentangle, mixed media art, and the occasional invitation and greeting card. I would love for you to join me as I continue to learn new things along this path. And maybe, just maybe, I can lend a little inspiration and motivation to your journey. So, if you’re ready, let’s go!
Kiki Halbert: Hi all! I’m Kelly-Ann or Kiki to all my friends. I started my creative journey back in 2005, with digital scrapbooking and moved into art journaling, and scrapbooking with paper (oh my!). I’ve worked with some amazing people along the way, and love expanding my artistic skill set and increase the joy I get from creating something that was just an idea in my head. For those of you that think you aren’t creative guess again, because I’ve always thought that I couldn’t make art of any kind, and the last decade have proven that idea wrong for sure! My style is quite eclectic, from elegant layouts, to grunge, to delicate. I’m a very random person I guess. I’m looking forward to a continued journey with this team of amazing artists, and look forward to sharing some fun projects with you.
Ashley Findlow: I am 28 years old, and live near Cincinnati, OH with my husband, daughter, and nine pets.
I do not have a full time job, so I am able to work on my art whenever I like. I try to take classes whenever possible. I always look forward to learning to techniques. I work with all different mediums and in all different areas of arts and crafts. Some of my favorites are book binding, card making, and art journaling, but my heart truly belongs to mixed media. Happy Creating!
Susan Brown: I reside in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with my husband of 23 years. During the daylight hours I am a graphic artist working in the fast-paced printing industry. I spend my days in a busy print shop working my computer wizardry producing printed materials, and at night… I create with abandon while all the world is asleep. I have been creatively inclined since a very young age, and I am privileged to share my knowledge with others, as well as ART-ing for sheer enjoyment. As a fellow crafty hoarder, I don’t stick with just one thing… the muse rules! I dabble in pretty much all media – if I need a card I make one, and the next day could I be playing in my art journal or altering a recycled container. I love to include repurposed items into my creations and using materials in new and unexpected ways. I’m excited to be joining the team of Alchemists and to share my creative adventures!
Marsha Mees: I’m Tatteredchick, a dreamer, junker, creative gal who loves animals, my husband and Sophie, our Boxer girl. I am eclectic when it comes to creating. For a few years I had a business called Sassy Mini Dolls. I burnt out and took a break from creating, searching for what to do next and a whole new art adventure opened up for me! I returned to my passion for junking, flea markets, garage sales. I started selling at a local flea market twice a year and decided to take some of my creative wares with me which led me to jewelry making, found object art, assemblage, textile art, encaustic, mixed media, journaling and I even pushed my fear aside and submitted one of my assemblage art dolls in an art competition and won second place! I don’t know that I have a “style”. I’m a little bit grungy, tattered and sometimes I am really colorful. I am addicted to taking online classes and attend a local art event, Art Is You, yearly. Every year I seem to focus on a different form of art and this year it’s photography. I have no idea what lies ahead with this new adventure with Gauche Alchemy– let’s find out together, you never know what new door will open!