I'm a Southern California transplant to Lexington, Kentucky as of 8 years ago. When I started my company, Handmade Hope Rags in 2010, it took a couple years to find my voice here in Lexington, KY and where I could serve and be part of a fresh burgeoning art community; you can imagine my joy when I saw the creative grassroots effort to revitalize NoLi, akin to the Punk Rock revivals I've been a part of in Venice Beach, Long Beach, and Orange County in the 80s. It was an honor to be a Vendor for 2 years at the Night Market, and to make life-long friends while meeting a plethora of kindred spirits. I'm honored to be a Bluegrass-based Artist in the homeland of my paternal family, a land they helped establish since 1798; a blessed land, where I create as I was eternally designed to do being made in the image of The Creator. I am a Trans-Disciplinary Artist and professionally published Geo-Archaeologist - yes since I was a kid I've always scored pretty much 50/50 for Artist/Scientist on those aptitude tests. I have combined my two passions as an "ARCHival Artist" - yes a term I made up to describe my passion. I professionally and beautifully craft original art, and vintage images from the plethora of archives and information centers, typically not privy to the general public, and transform them into quality home decor products and fashion accessories utilizing exquisite designer fabrics and tapestries specially procured from the world famous Los Angeles Fashion District, fabrics from domestic Hemp distributors, and various home decor mediums. I love collaborating with institutions, just like my academic research collaborations. It humbles me that I can take sentimental historic photos from the archives of famous historic landmarks like Shaker Village, and Henry Clay's Ashland Estate and translate them into distinguished and beloved art and decor items that can live on in families' homes for perpetuity and the love of cultural legacy. I am honored to have the distinction of being the first Artist signed on the H. Clay and Company mercantile line back in 2015. It has been a pleasure to bring the beautiful nostalgic charm of the Vintage Equestrian esthetic into people's intimate living space; it's been a labor a love complying and editing over 600 black and white photos, and over 500 color illustrations of these historic vintage equestrian artifacts in my personal artist archives of which I am constantly adding to.
I hand-craft each piece with the precision of a trained scientist; I imbue each piece with the empirical aesthetics of an artist who is passionate about cultures, prehistory, history and the perpetuity of lineage and heritage; as a business woman with over 20 years as a Director, and Administrator in the Cultural Resource Management, and Environmental Engineering & Construction industries: I am one who understands that in order for implements of cultural imperatives to survive it must have an expressed utilitarian need which can bolster the profane and mundane into the sacred by imagery, ritual, heritage, and legacy. Hence, I elevate common household decor and regalia apparel as my artistic medium. In short, I create Handmade Family Heirlooms imbued with the sweetness of enduring nostalgic charm. This, sincerely, is my "art-making process": it is my heart and passion cultivated by my discerning mind which propels me to be a conduit of culture: an Artist. ~ Joanne Hope Skiles Couch
I know a lot about magico-religious totems and symbol sets: cultural artifacts of past lifeways. Elevating the mundane profane to the ritualized sacred by imbuing it with meaning and consequence beyond its cultural materialist function. And the logistics of procurement practices of said lifeways stretching from roughly 9,000 BP to present, and the warranted logistics of meticulous excavation practices, while maintaining a humble role as Activist and Servant to the Native American Tribes whom I serve, and promoting and fostering a respectful advocacy to the land owners, and government agencies I mitigate with by convincing them to "do the right thing": this has been my professional pursuit, livelihood, and contribution to humanity for the past 28 years. For the last 8 years, I have taken my logistical passions and applied it to various art forms for the modern day Art Patron. My line of home decor and apparel are simply put: Handmade Family Heirlooms - a catalyst for celebrating culture and heritage - a direct dejection of modern day consumer fetishism and the conjured up throw-away society. ~ Joanne Hope Skiles Couch
Branding, Web Design, Internet Marketing.
"Just because you're different; don't expect people to treat your 'differently', because they will." ~ My Pops to me since I was a kid.
My Mom, my Pops, my Husband: they are the most hardcore, sterling people I know.
empathy; spiritual empathy.
After 20 years in the construction industries of Environmental Engineering, Cultural Resource Management (CRM), and Technical Artist, I am now living my "backup" career as a Homeschooling Mom to my 9 year old son and 5 year old daughter, and being an Artist of esthetic pursuits.
.... inane things: drives most people crazy that don't have an aptitude; thus I have suffered from tremendous lamentful laughter in years past, consequently, in my 47 years I have greatly learned the art of adaptation and employed stoic philosophy. But when I meet a kindred spirit, the music slays me and the moments are so sweetly sterling.
How to do a 1 minute life drawing of their hand: without lifting their pencil, without looking at their paper; in order to train their eye to see what is actually empirically there (rather than infer their cultural biases of what a hand is supposed to look like); hence, this exercise with help communicate their eye-hand coordination precisely over time and with lots of practice. This simple exercise was taught to me as a Freshman in college in my first Life Drawing class and I attribute this simple practice to making me an excellent Geo-Archaeologist, mastering the skillset of seeing the innate "essence" of inanimate objects and thus attributing subtle variance of color and texture to their correct mineral constituents of the aggregates (i.e. artifacts, stratigraphy, geoartifacts, anthropogenic activities). The remaining 4 minutes would be used to explain the challenges of this seemingly simple task which highlights the confounding phenomenon of cultural bias in our subjective, and assuming norms of conditioning.
I have never given one such attention to "favor".