The Creative Unconscious: What's your name, age, and professional title? Where are you currently employed?
Meghan Bogden Shimek: Meghan Bogden Shimek, 36, Artist, self-employed
TCU: What hobbies do you have outside of your professional field that keep you inspired and motivated to generate personal work? How do they inspire you?
MBS: I am quite a homebody and like to read, bake, and cook. I also really love spending quiet time outdoors, I would say hiking, but really just walking outside. I love swimming in rivers when it is hot enough, but probably the most inspiring thing is surrounding myself with other creative people. All of the things I do besides creative work helps to give me time away and allow new ideas to enter my consciousness while stepping away from fiber and work. Having creative people around me helps me to see the world differently and again, to give myself a break from the work I am creating and entering another world of creativity.
TCU: Do you have a hard time balancing being a creative professional and generating personal work that you're proud of?
MBS: I have a dream that every week I will set aside time to work on personal projects, but sometimes that doesn't happen or when I decide it is time to work on something personal I don't feel inspired to create something new. I find the most important thing is to work when I am inspired, even if it is for a short time or it means I am putting off professional work, sometimes it just has to be done!
TCU: What time of day do you feel the most creative? What about the most productive?
MBS: This has been really interesting for me to recognize in the last year or so. I used to be so productive in the morning and valued that time immensely, however, recently I have become much more creative and productive when I work late at night. I don't always have the energy for it, but the nights that I stay up late working I tend to get so much done and am really excited about the work I have created.
TCU: What are your creative goals for the future?
MBS: I am more and more interested in creating large, site-specific installations and sculptural objects made of fiber. I want to continue to make accessible pieces, but would love to step into this other role as well.
TCU: Are you working on any personal projects right now? If so, can you share a little bit about your inspiration and your creative process?
MBS: I just returned from having my first exhibition in Paris, much of the work felt like personal projects. I was able to collaborate with an incredible indigo artist, Anais Guery, and the work we created together felt so raw and emotional. It will definitely be informing upcoming work. I am currently trying to catch up on all the things I wasn't taking care of while I was gone, so everything feels a little in limbo at the moment!
TCU: What scares you?
MBS: I am scared of becoming stagnant or uninspired. I am also scared, as most artists in the Bay Area, of how long I will be able to continue to live here. I absolutely love it and have never felt more at home anywhere else.
TCU: What does success mean to you?
MBS: Success to me is creating work that I am proud of that also evokes emotion in others. My work isn't for everyone, but the last couple years this work has been so incredibly healing for me, that I hope others are able to sense that and have it bring them comfort or help them to confront their own fears and challenges.
If you'd like to see more of Meghan's incredibly beautiful work or to learn more about this Bay Area-based artist, head over to www.meghanshimek.com.