© 2018 by Tiffany Conway 

Art has always been with me. It’s been my outlet as an only child and I chronicled my emotional teenage years using illustrative journals. My love for art, however, came when my world fell apart and I needed to rebuild myself. I was going through the motions of life as a young woman and at a job that I hated for years. Until I got to a point where I could not hold onto the mask I was putting on every day to face the world. When I was at my lowest, a friend asked me a simple question, "What do you like to do?" And I thought about what always stuck with me as a child, and that was art.

 

From then on I immersed myself  in education, learning about art history and the fundamentals of how to draw and paint. As time went on and my education came to an abrupt end,  as I could not afford to continue my school. Even though I decided not to return to college my art supplies followed me in the next stage of my life. I went from painting abstracts in the classroom to teaching myself how to paint portraits and reimagined illustrations. I did not know what I would do with this newfound skill but I continued to practice. I started drawing to process my life up until that point. Turning negatives into positives, I came up with my first coloring book "Project Get Free - Navigating the World as a Diasporian". I did not know it at the time, but creating my coloring book was extremely therapeutic. It covered lighter topics from hip-hop song lyrics to more introspective themes, of depression, sisterhood, and self-discovery.

 

As time continues, I explore themes that directly affect black women. I believe that it is important to unmask the myth of what strong should be. My overall vision is to create art that empowers vulnerability, as I believe that this is the ultimate superpower. When creating, I try to portray “softness” through my technique with skin tone in the attempt to portray us just as we are in the physical realm in the attempt to show our spirit. When looking at my work I would like my audience to feel at peace, and to also see themselves, without hard lines, multidimensional and navigating the world from the inside out. What drives me is the desire to heal others and myself in the process of creating and showing my work. Being an African American artist in today's day and age for me is to focus on our humanity and the magical creatures of resilience that we are.