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Maker Of The Month: Art By Mandel

Ashley Morken of Unglued shares about a local maker each month: first up is Art By Mandel!

Photos courtesy of Art by Mandel

Tell us a bit about yourself

Hello! I am a painter, illustrator and architect living in Minneapolis, MN. Before moving to Minneapolis two years ago I lived in Fargo-Moorhead for 12 years. In my free time, I love creating art and exploring Minnesota with my husband Grant and our dog Morgan.

Describe your handmade business

My paintings are acrylic paint with a paint pen for outlines and accents. The prints I create are often high-resolution images of my paintings but sometimes they are illustrations made with pens and Prisma color markers. In addition to my paintings and prints, I am also passionate about street art. I have illustrations on electrical boxes in Moorhead and Minneapolis, and in 2016 I completed a mural on Junkyard Brewery in Moorhead.

What is one of your most favorite items you have made?

I really love my series of small 6”x6” paintings; they are so much fun to create and can sometimes lead to great ideas for larger paintings.

Tell us more about what you did for the Unglued Craft Fest

For this year’s Unglued Craft Fest I decided to focus on my floral art. I had small floral paintings and a variety of floral prints. I wanted my booth to feel like a boutique floral nursery. I love the feeling you get when you walk into a floral nursery and you’re surrounded by beautiful flowers, greenery and cute pots. I really wanted people to have a similar experience at my booth.

What is your favorite flower?

That is a really tough decision but hydrangeas are the first flower that comes to mind. I love their color palette and I love how full they can get.

What are your most essential tools?

My most essential tools are paint and brushes. More specifically I use a lot of white paint, I mix almost all my colors with white.

What is a word that best describes you?

Idealistic. In my day-to-day life I can definitely be idealistic and I think it comes across in my art. I always strive to have my paintings be reflections of the beauty that I see in the world.

What advice would you have given yourself 5 years ago?

Don’t worry about certain “rules” that go along with painting. Just create art you love and, more than likely, there are people that love it too.

How can our community support you as an artist and/or your creative business?

Continuing to have fun, unique opportunities is a great way to keep artists and the community inspired in art. I really love how much Fargo/Moorhead is embracing murals, public art, craft fests and street fairs. Incorporating art into everyday activities is a great way to expose the community to art and give artists more opportunities.

The 9th Annual Unglued: Craft Fest took place February 22 and 23 and we were so inspired by all the incredible local makers we found there. These artists and makers deserve all the recognition, so we’ve recruited Unglued’s owner Ashely Morken to help us highlight one phenomenal maker each month. First up: Mandel Cameron of Art by Mandel.

You can find more works by Mandel at artbymandel.com

Ashley Morken

Written by Ashley Morken

Ashley Morken is the owner of Unglued, a modern handmade gift shop featuring over 300 local and regional makers in downtown Fargo. She also a founding member of the Creative Mornings Fargo committee.

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