I am so grateful that I was able to grow up with a name that is so closely linked to art.
-Margaret Campbell – Ryder
Chloe has managed to reflect on her father and grandfathers work whilst forging her own unique style in the arts.
Almost every single member of my family on my father’s side is an artist or has made art a huge part of their lives, and that really encouraged me to be more creative and to become an artist myself. If I didn’t have that, I don’t think I would have had the courage to pursue art as a career or to let creativity influence my life the way it has. The art world is a difficult one to break into and to be successful in, and it’s so much harder if you don’t have your family supporting you to go in that direction. I am so lucky to have that and to have been able to explore that creative side of myself right from the start. I think back at how encouraging my parents always were with my art and how they helped me get my career started at such a young age, and I don’t think I could ever thank them enough for that
It has obviously come with its own set of challenges though, mainly in the internal battle of doubting my own abilities and questioning whether I really deserve to be where I am. I see so many artists struggling to make it, so many incredibly talented people who just don’t get the opportunities that I’ve had, and it can be hard not to feel guilty about it. I often find myself comparing my art to theirs and feeling like I’ve gotten to take their spot just because of my last name.
I think every artist struggles with feeling like they’re not good enough, and not knowing if your success is because of your merit or your last name can make that really hard. I have to remind myself that that the effort I put in is why I do actually deserve to be here. My Change of Season project has definitely helped me to understand that. I really felt that I needed to do something for myself that would set me apart from my family name and allow me to see that I have something to offer outside of that.
For a while I was kind of separating myself from art and trying to do something on my own by investing my time in writing. I got a bachelors and a masters and thought that I had to follow the path of writing and leave art behind me. It wasn’t until I started on this project that I realised I could do both.
Using art and writing to bounce off each other has honestly been life changing.
I didn’t know I could use my own work as inspiration, I thought it had to come from somewhere else and couldn’t figure out why that never really worked for me. The process of painting has always been very intuitive for me; I can look at the colours in the paint tubs and see what they can transform into.
I can’t believe it took me so long to realise that I was seeing a story in those colours and bringing it to life on the canvas. When I realised that, it suddenly made so much sense to then flesh out those stories with words on a page. I think that’s also why I’m so drawn to abstract art. I used to tell myself that I had to make abstract art because I wasn’t good enough to paint anything more realistic, but now I think I do it because the stories I’m trying to tell don’t necessarily look like anything from this world.
I’ve always felt that I see the world as a muddled abstraction of reality; painting and writing helps me make sense of it all and helps me understand and explore things in a way I otherwise wouldn’t have been able to.
One thing you’ll notice is that all the paintings in this project are centered around trees. To me, nature is concrete and real, and sometimes the only thing that seems to make sense. I admire the way trees stand tall and unconcerned with all the chaos that goes on around them, and that’s the feeling I try to capture in my work. I’m not sure if that’s something I’ll be able to move away from in future projects, but I’m excited to see where my journey takes me.
To me, nature is concrete and real, and sometimes the only thing that seems to make sense. I admire the way trees stand tall and unconcerned with all the chaos that goes on around them, and that’s the feeling I try to capture in my work. I’m not sure if that’s something I’ll be able to move away from in future projects, but I’m excited to see where my journey takes me.