Mixed media artist Dawn Corner is one of those people who you can talk to for an hour and feel like you’ve been friends for your entire life. I first met Dawn a few years ago at Spotlight on Art where we spent the entire night walking the show floor and geeking out on the fabulous paintings. It’s no wonder she was among the first people I knew I had to interview for “When Artists Drink Cocktails.”
Fun fact: Dawn was a bartender back in the day– so who better than to serve up my very first Manhattan? Although there are many ways to make a Manhattan (check out this recipe from cookieandkate.com) her version of this classic cocktail includes Maker’s Mark bourbon, orange bitters, and a healthy dose of Bada Bing Cherry juice to sweeten things up.
With our cocktails in hand, we sat down and she opened up about how different life circumstances pushed her to where she is today. Early on, Dawn wanted to pursue art on a professional level but her mother insisted on a more practical, “business” approach. She majored in design and then worked as a buyer for several years until she became a mom. Although she left the corporate world behind, that business experience eventually paid off for her art business in many ways. Dawn tells us about one of the pricing strategies she learned that allows her to reach more audiences with her art. She also speaks about her son Brian who was born with autism and the cool way he helps her in the studio (and makes her artwork even more special.)
Dawn gave me a tour of her basement studio and talked about how she starts her day with meditation and her art journaling practice. First, she uses a “hidden handwriting” technique that allows her to get her thoughts out and then makes three specific lists to help guide her day. She also showed us the different mediums that she incorporates into her artwork like acrylics, paper, ink, and her latest obsession Stabilo woody pencils. Last but not least, she shared a sweet strategy she learned to silence your inner critic.
This interview is packed with so much goodness – watch the full conversation here. If you’re local to the Atlanta area, Dawn also offers meditative art journaling classes and open studios throughout the year. Be sure to keep an eye out for announcements on her Instagram or Facebook pages. You can also visit her website for more info on her work.