We had the good fortune of connecting with Gia Findley and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Gia, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
My love for art stretches back to my youth. Most kids played sports, but I typically spent my weekends playing with my sisters and creating something new with paper and crayons. Art was always my favorite class, so there was no question it would be my elective of choice in middle school. It was there that my Art Teacher pulled my mom aside and said that she saw something in me and recommended I take AP art classes in high school. I loved art before, but I really found my happy place in high school. I won two gold medals for “Best in Show” for my artwork submissions of horses at The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. I graduated and left for UNT to pursue a degree in Design, but quickly saw that art was going more digital, which was not in alignment with what I wanted to create. So, I changed direction and got a degree in Fashion Merchandising, which prepared me for an almost decade long career in Product Development and Brand Management (also creative roles!) for well recognized retailers. This experience gave me the business know how to eventually launch Life To Art Portaits, several years later, after taking time off to start a family. As my kids got older, I began to rediscover this part of myself. When you are a naturally creative person, you can’t suppress it for long! My oldest son came home from school one day telling me that they worked on self portraits in art class that day, and he asked if I could draw him. That was the day that reignited the flame. There is no denying that I enjoy bringing people and pets to life on paper. I look forward to each new opportunity to create something special for my clients.Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am a photorealism Artist. I mostly draw pets and people, but when other interesting subjects catch my attention, (like the succulent holding water droplets in my flower pot), I will draw that, too. I’ve also been known to take on projects outside of my photorealism realm, and those have been fun, also! I am a passionate and determined person…I’m always looking to improve my craft and expand my horizons. Life To Art Portraits is a reflection of my creative discipline. I enjoy the challenge of bringing a subject to life on paper, and the way artwork has the ability to bring something beautiful into this world. And hopefully, it brings happiness to the recipient of the portrait. That is always a goal I strive for with each new piece.Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
My best friend also has young kids, so we would probably go somewhere kid friendly! I love to be outdoors when the weather is nice. McKinney is home to a lot of beautiful parks that we frequent. The Heard Museum comes to mind. My kids and I love walking the trails and checking out the butterfly garden. As for food, I’m a fan of brunch! I love going to Starwood Cafe and First Watch with my friends.The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to thank David, for coming home that day and asking me to draw his portrait. That simple request made a huge impact on my future, and I will always remember it as the moment that led me here. I would like to thank my husband, Jimmy, for supporting me and our family so that I could take the time I needed to pursue this dream of mine. It wouldn’t be possible without you. I would like to thank my parents for encouraging and supporting me in reaching every artistic milestone I aimed for as a child and young adult. I wouldn’t be here today without that foundation. I would like to thank my sisters for being the creative geniuses they are…always inspiring me with new ideas and cheering me on in my journey.
Photo credit of Sunrise Succulent (The photo over the couch) – Fine Art America