Where are you from? Where did you grow up? How did you grow up?
As a first generation American, I was born in the peak of a New York summer to two wonderful immigrant parents hailing from Italy and Switzerland.
They raised me in the eclectic city of San Francisco which I called home until my early 20’s. I was really fortunate to have parents that not only encouraged my creative tendencies from an early age but supported my curiosity for the world.
Are there any special childhood memories that you can recall that have set you forth on the creative path that you are on now?
Not that I can recall. I was quite the active kid, always playing outdoors or creating art projects in my room. My imagination was constantly keeping my hands busy.
Did you always know that you wanted to be an artist?
No, I was really torn between a direction in natural science and that of design but didn’t consider a career in art. I eventually chose to pursue a degree in illustration with much of the course work focusing on technical skill development which I loved. The year following graduation I worked as a freelance illustrator and designer, fulfilling different clients desires but not my own. I hated not having creative freedom or being my own boss. With this realization, I dove headfirst into a fine art path that merged my love for the environment and art and haven’t looked back since.
Most of your art is inspired in nature, how do you relate to nature? What inspires you? Are there any special aspects that open up your heart and imagination?I’m constantly curious about the natural world and what I can do to protect it. Painting flora and fauna gives me purpose and allows me to learn about different species, their habitats and ability to survive. It is my hope that my art sparks thoughts and conversation about conservation.
Do you have any special rituals you do to get inspired or before you start painting?
I love my mornings and the rituals that comes with the new day.
Whether, taking a walk along the beach, listening to podcasts (The Daily or BBC global news) or going for a quick surf/swim, movement is so important to harness focus.
And somewhere in between, either before or after the morning activities, making coffee is a must. If you know me,… really you know me and my moka espresso pot - ha.
What's a normal day in the life of Velia? How does your Greenpacha reflect your lifestyle?