I get most of my printing done at Metropol here in Victoria and the other day when I walked in to pick up the cards for my candles I gasped at the beautiful, massive, back-lit print of a woman at their front door. I walked up to the counter and exclaimed how much I loved it and discovered I had just gushed to the artist herself. I immediately wanted to know more and to help her share her art. Read on to learn a little more about astrology, her experiences with fluctuating creativity, and her favorite places to eat, shop, and visit in Victoria.
Her prints are available here, and please know that 80% of the sales go to Claire and 20% is being donated to the Victoria Sexual Assault Center to support their work with survivors of sexual assault and childhood sexual abuse through advocacy, counseling, and empowerment.
Meet Claire Beauchamp of 11th House Creative:
You’ve named the creative company that you share with your partner Jaxon Gerrand, “11th House Creative” because you are both ruled by 11th Astrological House. If someone reading this has no idea what that means, how would you explain that particular house and the signs of the zodiac?
Most people know that there are 12 astrological signs of the Zodiac, but a lesser known fact is that each sign is the ruler of an “Astrological House”. Each of the 12 houses represents an aspect of our day to day lives, like Travel, Health, Money, Love, etc. The 11th House is the “House of Friendship”. It is the house that governs the coming together of people; the collective. It further represents how working with others allows us to make a positive difference in the world and can help each of us fulfill our greatest desires and even our destiny. Jaxon and I are both Aquarius and have a desire to bring great minds together. We sometimes work on solo projects, and sometimes collaboratively, but under one roof, as it were. 11th House seemed like the perfect fit for this!
Aquarius and Pisces begin the calendar year and follow each other in the zodiac but you also have another reason for choosing these two signs to begin with, can you share what it is?
It was actually during the creation process of these two prints that I realized that they were Aquarius and Pisces. Once the color and the expressions started coming to life it came to me, and it made perfect sense! I’ve always had a very special relationship with Pisces. Many of my dearest friends and past roommates are Fish. Aquarius is the water bearer, represented by a vessel holding water: intellectually creative thinkers, analytical and sometimes distant. Pisces is represented by the two fish, they are emotionally creative thinkers, running deep with feeling and warmth. Both signs love people and I believe in my life there has been a symbiosis with Pisces for this reason. Aquarius lovingly holds the space for Pisces to fill with love, nurturing both simultaneously.
You’ve mentioned that you have had periods of creative rest and that you are now in the flow. Do you think there is anything in particular that influences those times of inspiration or lack thereof?
I sometimes can go years without making, and although it can be uncomfortable and difficult for morale at times, I’ve grown to trust that the flow will come again. I don’t think there’s any one particular thing that motivates the beginning of a new creative flow for me. But, to be honest, the first drawings that became these first prints were drawn directly after watching the Iris Apfel documentary. Watching other people create, imagine and be inspired usually makes me want to do the same. It makes things seem possible again.
What would you say to someone else out there who struggles to put their work out there?
As cliche as it sounds, the best advice I could give is to trust yourself. I think some of the most beneficial things for us are the hardest to do, and I would say trusting ourselves can be one of the hardest things to do in this life. I know for myself and from many friends and colleagues who create in many capacities, that trusting your own style, motives, and aesthetic can make you feel exposed and vulnerable. The first irony is that the most compelling work exposes difficult truths, candid honesty and secrets. The second irony is that showing vulnerability takes strength. Magic.
What / who was your influence or inspiration for the style of your work?
Although I have too many to name in WAY too many genres, some that come to mind more prominently are Audrey Kawasaki, Camille Rose Garcia, Julian Callos and Chris Ware in the world of visual art. I’ve always lusted for graffiti and went to Art school during a resurgence of “Low Brow” art and Kitch, so I often naturally direct to those elements when making. Music (especially electronic), fashion and film also influence the mood of my pieces.
Can you tell us a little about what you have planned for the other zodiacs and when they would be released?
Lately, I find myself thinking about all the different aspects of each sign… What facial expression would work best, what would their features be like, what colors would best express their aura, mood, being? I don’t plan to release the signs in order, as I want to allow myself the freedom to go in the direction that feels right, but Scorpio has been on my mind … They are considered one of the most deeply emotional and mysterious signs in the zodiac, full of creative and sexual energy to express but often holding their true selves very close to the chest. I’m dreaming of some very deep blues and shimmering pigments to dive into the sparkling cavernous pool that Scorpio seems to be...
When someone is visiting from out of town, where do you send them to eat, drink, shop and see in Victoria?
I have an eclectic streak so it depends on my mood, but some of my favorite go-to’s are the places that pay attention to detail and have a bit of an electric buzz with a comfy vibe.
- I love Rise and Grind for breakfast… Lively soul and beats playing while you eat the most indulgent, thoughtful treats… and the staff has a great sense of humor.
- Hey Happy for coffee-type drinks... Always offering original flavor combos in a tiny space that feels SO bright and big. When I lived in Fernwood I would visit your Picot shop often for my craft chic and alchemy needs!
- When I want to shop around I tend to gravitate towards shops down by the Johnson bridge... Little Gold, Vintage After Death, Local Assembly, Regional Assembly of Text and Lore General are usually on my list... So much more to list... We’re so lucky to have so many innovative businesses here!
Can you tell us 5 things people generally don’t know about you?
Thank you so much for reading this interview with Claire, please check out her prints and if you loved this interview please share it or leave a comment! She is working on a website but you can follow along with her work or reach her directly through her Instagram.