Living Life in Full Color LA Artist Profile: Emily Keating Snyder
We loved catching up with Los Angeles-based artist Emily Keating Snyder, who mixes paint and thread to make vibrant embroidered paintings and art that inspires.
“I’ve always been obsessed with color,” she says. I’m also inspired by materials and tactile elements, thinking of new ways to layer materials. Overall, I’m inspired by visual art that fosters direct experience, meaning something tangible as opposed to something we intellectualize or try to explain with words.”
Her newest collection, “Louver,” came to her on one of her many walks around her neighborhood. “Since Covid-19 began, I would take photos of interesting archways and windows I found along the way. I love the 1920’s and 30’s Spanish style architecture that’s so prevalent in LA,” she shares.
“I started noticing these beautiful shapes and architectural elements everywhere. While I was translating some of them onto canvas and sketching out my early ideas, I was hit with a feeling that my interest in them had something to do with my feelings of feeling stuck due to travel restrictions. Doorways and openings are elements that take you from one place into another, the physical passages between private space and the outer world.”
Blending fabric and paint makes me feel closely connected to the work, because I’m often physically holding the canvas in my hands and touching the art much more than I would be with traditional painting,” Emily shares. “I also love the idea that I’m working in the traditional women’s craft of embroidery - especially with needlecrafts passed down within my family - but using an artist’s canvas and incorporating abstract painting, which was historically reserved for men.”
They say that creativity takes courage, and it’s a journey Emily embarked on early. “I’ve been an artist my entire life, and then studied Art History and Studio Art at New York University’s Gallatin School. “But coming out school, I had no idea how I would turn my creativity into a career,” she shares.
It was the pre-Instagram era, and conventional wisdom had it that artists went from gallery to gallery, hoping for representation. Having limited success this way, she instead armed herself with free online marketing and creative courses that honed her skills on developing her art career online. When Instagram, blogs and artist websites became ubiquitous, her artistic career ascended as well.
Emily’s artistic journey inspires her to share her advice for other aspiring artists and entrepreneurs:
- Improve your relationship with money. “Cultivating a positive relationship with money helped me to feel confident in my pricing and my worth as an artist.”
- Get comfortable approaching people with your work. “It can be intimidating to submit to a gallery or email an interior designer for the first time, but building relationships continues to be one of the most important things I do in my career.”
- Be open to the many ways success can come to you. “I became comfortable with slower growth. What I didn’t realize early on was how impactful it can be cultivating one sale - or one social media follower - at a time. Not only do these things add up but getting to know people who love your work and connecting on an individual level is so meaningful and exciting.”
When asked how her art intersects with interior design, Emily shares that she has a passion for interior design and “loves that my work gets to live in homes and in intimate interiors like hotels. I love creating art that is seen in more of a personal context.”
Over the years her own interior style has changed from what she calls “a colorful maximalist” to a soft minimalist. “Going more minimalist in my home has helped me feel calmer and more content with my surroundings and has lessened my urge for constant change,” she shares.
Still, nothing is more exciting for her than to see spaces filled with color and textures. “My pieces fit right in with those kinds of playful environments,” she notes. “I also think bold, colorful art can look perfectly at home in a clean, neutral space. That contrast is always beautiful.”
To see more of Emily’s work, visit her website at emilykeatingsnyder.com and follow her on Instagram @emksnyder