Saturday, February 13, 2010

Artist Spotlight - Kim de Broin Mailhot

What better weekend to introduce you to someone that is the author of a blog called the Queen of Hearts? On February 14, with thoughts of valentine's and love, I'd like to introduce you to someone that just oozes good thoughts and cool art.

Kim de Broin Mailhot is an upbeat, kind, and giving blogger. I'm quite confident that she is also an upbeat, kind and giving person (sadly, we've not met in person). She must have her bad days as we all do, but even then she offers words to inspire and lift up others. Her artwork is usually bright, colorful (gee, I wonder what attracted me to her work?) and fun. She also has quite a campaign going. No, she's not running for office. She anonymously leaves painted rocks about town to get others thinking. Her "Rock My World" rocks have been a real hit and are available for purchase so you can make your piece of the world a bit better too.

Kim and I "met" last year during the One World, One Heart blogging event and have corresponded since. I always read her blog and hope that, after reading her interview and enjoying her artwork, you'll check it out too.

Kim de Broin Mailhot,
Mixed Media Artist, Rock Fairy, Blogger

Where are you from? And, where do you live now?
I was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada and lived there until 9 years ago when I moved to New Hampshire to marry my sweet hubby, David. I still go back to Montreal monthly and have a wonderful family and many great friends there.

What is your art education?
I am a self-taught artist. I have taken classes here and there in drawing and painting but I am really an explorer of a wide variety of art mediums. Experimenting and learning how to use many different tools and techniques is a big part of the creative process for me.

Have you always been an artist or are you “new” to it?
I have always enjoyed art but I think I became an artist in my 20’s when I realized how wonderful it felt to take time for myself and to be a creative being. I learned to express my feelings and thoughts through art. I have often described art as therapy with a paint brush (cheaper that the other kind too, but just as effective I think!).

What is your specialty? And, have you always worked in this medium?
I have dabbled in all kinds of different mediums, from paper mache to stained glass to jewelry making to painting. Right now, I work mostly with acrylic paints, india inks, and a lot of collage.

One constant since I started exploring my own artistic talent is working an art journal of some kind. My art journal has become a place where some of my best art work is created, but also some of my worst. My favorite thing about it is that it becomes a document that chronicles my experiments with art, but also my life and thoughts and feelings. It is kind of my way of leaving my story out there in the world.

What does your work space look like?
I am lucky enough to have a whole room dedicated to my studio space. It has a large bay window which brings in a lot of light and the window sill is filled with plants, many of which flower all year long. I also have two French doors that lead out to a big outdoor deck with I love in the summertime. I have a lot of storage space, with a large armoire and an old dresser with big wide drawers. I do my art play on an 10 ft kitchen counter top supported by two nightstands I purchased from Ikea years ago. The counter top is usually covered with all the supplies I pull out for collaging, stamping or painting. I tend to start off with a nice tidy work surface and end up in a very messy one by the end of a play time session. I used to moan and complain about it but I have come to realize that the cleaning, then messing things up, is all part of my creative process. It is how I work !

Please describe your work.
Most of my work has bright, vibrant colors of acrylic paint with dark black India ink, and white paint pen pen work as well as many textures made from stencils, rubber stamps and paint techniques. Since I have discovered the rich blackness of India ink, it has made its way into almost everything I do. I also love the fact that I use my father’s old dip pen to get the ink on the page.

The majority of my work takes place in a journal and I like to keep that together as one document but I do make prints of my pieces, and also add them to cards. I also love making small more “sellable” pieces, such as magnets, jewelry, and fabric trinkets like my lavender stuffed birds.

Do you have any special art tips for others?
I guess my biggest art tip for others is to learn to tell that big, bad inner critic to buzz off! Don’t let that voice in your head that says “but I may make something ugly” or “what I make will never be any good” or even “I will look stupid if I really play like a child would” stop you from creating. The process of creating is inherent in all of us, in some form. If you are drawn to express yourself through art, just go for it! Give yourself the chance to just make art, even if it may be “ugly”. What is really important is the process, that you have taken time for yourself, to play with color, with a variety of mediums that feel good in your hands, and to let little bits of yourself out into the world. The end results are not really so important. It is not like you are performing brain surgery or something! Just learn to play and keep that mean inner critic away!

What inspires you?
My art play tends to be inspired by my desire to express myself, my thoughts and my emotions. As I said, it is kind of a therapy or a ritual practice that makes me feel whole. It has become so important to me, like exercise feels to the athlete, I guess. If I go a few days without creating something or doing a journal page, I actually get kind of an itchy feeling in my hands and in my imagination!

My pieces themselves tend to be inspired by interesting quotes I come across, by the work or writings of other artists or bloggers, or by the emotions I am feeling on a particular day. I also occasionally use art journal prompts to get me going in my play time, especially if I am feeling a little stuck and need to loosen up or to shoo that inner critic away.

When you’re not making art, what are you doing?
When I am not doing art, I may be walking with my dog Chica, leaving Rock My World rocks on my way. Or I may be spending time with my wonderful family or great friends, talking and sharing stories. Or I may be in Blogland, writing my blog or visiting my blog pals, in a community with so many wonderful, caring, talented people, that I am so proud and grateful to be a part of.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I would just like to thank people like Lorrie and so many other members of the art blogging community for all they do to support one another and to provide a real connection to other artists. Blogland offers us opportunity to reach out, to feel connected and to learn from and share with each other. It is something really special and I am grateful for it in my life.

How can you be contacted about your work?
I can be contacted on my blog at
My etsy shop:
Or via email at

Please visit her blog and Etsy site. While you're there, shout out a hello to her too. Happy Valentine's day everyone!



Sherry said...

Lorrie, having met Kim this past November, I can tell you she is every bit as open, giving, caring, sharing, bubbly, laughing, lively as she appears on her blog.

Thank you for sharing this wonderful interview with such an incredible heart, an incredible woman.

As for that studio of Kim's?? It's awesome!!!

Olivia said...

I agree with Sherry, ditto! Loved the description of Kim's studio; how about some pictures? And I'd like to know what Kim did before as a career? Merci beaucoup to Lorrie and Kim!

beth said...

kim and I don't know each other as far as meeting in person, but we've talked on the phone and as far as I'm concerned....she's not only the queen of hearts...she's the queen and owner of the biggest heart walking....HER HEART....what a priceless gift she is.....
love ya kim !

Kate said...

First I have to say I loved the interview. The questions were different and interesting. Kim is such a sweetheart and I am a faithful reader of her blog and consider her a good friend. Thanks so much for featuring Kim.....

last minute lynn said...

Thanks, Lorrie. Love the colorful, cheerfullness of Kim's work. I have subscribed...

Joanne Huffman said...

Very good interview. I'm off to check Kim's blog now...

martha brown said...

Hi Lorrie! Well, you didn't win the heart bag prize on my OWOH giveaway -- but I decided to give away some other prizes -- please visit my blog to see why you won! Oh, and email me your mailing address so I can send you something :)
(p.s. I love this interview with Kim)

Lorrie Grainger Abdo said...

Thanks for visiting my blog to learn more about Kim! She's pretty special.

Related Posts with Thumbnails