Sunday, December 22, 2019

A chance for you to meet my art friend Cindy McMath

Thank you for agreeing to allow me to interview you, Cindy.

Thank you for asking, Elizabeth!

I’d like to begin by asking you to introduce yourself to my audience, since they may not be as familiar with you as I.  Please explain a bit about yourself and your art. 

I live on the West Coast of Canada and have been creating something or other for as long as I can remember. 
My mum was very creative and we used to take classes together when I was younger - we learned to make our own clothing patterns and even took a stained glass class for example.

Do you have formal training in art?
I have taken some classes but I don’t have a degree or anything fancy like that. Mostly I learn from reading books and watching tutorials online.

When did you start making art and in what genre?

I used to draw non-stop as a kid. In fact my first “mixed media” pieces were pencil drawings coloured in with my mum’s old eye makeup she gave me for that purpose. 

Of course that was in the 60s and 70s so the colours were amazing. In my early teens I had an art teacher who really discouraged me. 

Although I still kept creating I was more focused on 

sewing and crafty projects. 

Have you always been a paper crafter?

I found my way back to art through paper crafting. For my son’s first Xmas I decided to make my own cards with his photo in a frame card.
I drew holly around the frame and coloured it with markers. This was about 30 years ago and it was just before the big craze of scrapbooking and 

rubber stamping started in earnest. 

In the Spring of the following year 

I happened on a demo of rubber stamps and gold embossing powder. I was absolutely hooked! I 

stamped for quite a few years, got published in the Stampers’ Sampler 

and even taught rubber stamping classes 

What prompted you to start blogging? 

I wanted a place to record my progress and share my work. Blogging seemed like a really easy way to do that at the time.

How did you come up with the name Pink Bird Studio?

I have a lovely pink bird who lives at my house. He is a rosy Bourke, which is a pink parakeet - about budgie size.

I know you were big in collage because of your affiliation with ARTChix and Collage Cats. Can you elaborate on those experiences?

I had been 

stamping for quite a few years and wanted to do something different. I happened to find the Collage Cats group online and found that they also published a zine. I loved the group and was published in the zine several times. 
Shortly after, my cousin told me about her friend Helga who had an online business 

called ARTchix Studio. 

I loved her collage sheets and other art-making supplies and placed an order at once. 

Eventually we met in person and I agreed to moderate her Yahoo Group (remember those?). It was a lot of fun.  

I know I met you online when we were both working in altered books. How did you get started in that genre?

Altered books were another thing that kind of burst on the scene in those days - I remember especially the True Colors book published by Stampington & Co. It was about a group of artists working on a round robin. 

I loved the altered book process. I was used to making art to give away or sell (mostly cards in those days) and this gave me an opportunity 

to make art for myself just for fun. 

I worked on some round robins both through the mail and locally and created my own books as well. Such fun. I haven’t worked on an altered book for a long time but 

I do work in art journals both just for fun, 

and for the Sketchbook Project at Brooklyn Art Library. The main difference between an altered book and an art journal is the pages of a journal are blank.

When did you begin creating mixed media?

Other than using my mum’s old eye shadow,

my mixed media work really started when I started to add collage to my stamped creations.

Most of my collages are not “pure” collages (cut and paste), but incorporate other media, whether that’s paint, crayons, pencils or all of the above.

What advice would you give to those wanting to get into collage and mixed media?

Spend time learning about composition.

Look this up online and spend some time looking at different pieces and artists you admire

and deciding what you like about the composition.

Composition transcends all media and techniques.

I remember you used to make the most beautiful cards that you stamped using commercial stamps. Now you make your own. Do you enjoy the process?

I do enjoy making my own stamps, but have to be in the mood. It’s not my favourite thing but I love using them because no one else has them. 

The thing about commercial stamps is you’ll see those stamps in many other peoples’ work, whereas I won’t see my own stamps replicated. 

Even if someone copied my design it would never really be the same.

What type of materials do you use in your carvings?

I use a multi-blade carving tool (the blades are stored in the handle, much like a multi-head screwdriver) and rubber that I purchase at my local art supply shop. You can use dollar store erasers,

but I like the flexibility of having a large rubber sheet that can be cut to whatever size I want.

What are some of your favorite art supplies?

Where do I start?! I love paint, 


Caran D’Ache Neocolor II water soluble crayons, 

pencils, pens 

and of course images to use in my collages. 

I also really enjoy using my gelli plate. 

On the subject of supplies, which tool can you not live without?

My scissors would be my favourite and most-used tool.  I actually have a nice pair of Tim Holtz scissors that I’ve used for years.  I like the big grip (I have big hands so teeny scissors are just annoying for me!) and the fact they are non-stick because

I am always cutting through stuff that has been glued or taped.

Do you ever have artist's block?

No I do not.  I have the opposite problem - too many ideas!

sometimes it’s hard for me to focus on one thing.

I don’t usually write them down because I know I’ll never have time to execute them all.

Is there anything you would like to add that I haven’t already mentioned?

In the past few years

I’ve expanded my art practice to include more painting. Some of the pieces are mixed media and some are acrylic paint.

I really enjoy creating abstract art as everyone can see something different and they can all make up their own story.

Thanks again for asking me to be interviewed on your blog. If your readers are interested in seeing more of my work they are welcome to visit me on my blog, or on Instagram @cindymcmath

I want to thank Cindy for graciosly giving of her time to answer these questions.  Please be aware that all art in this post belongs to Cindy.  PLEASE do not pin her art from my blog. I'm certain she will give you permission to pin from her blog. 

Cindy can be found on the internet at or

her Picturetrail 

16 thoughtful remarks:

Valerie-Jael said...

Wonderful art from Cindy, beautiful pieces and she has a flair for good arrangements. Have a great day, Valerie

Jorin said...

Thank you for this wonderful interview! I love Cindys work, and the questions give me more infos about the background!
Merry Christmas, Jorin (@jorinfrosch)

Nancy said...

Lovely work! I enjoyed your interview

Anne (cornucopia) said...

Great interview of Cindy, Elizabeth. I like her artwork, and usually get to see it once a week when she participates in Sunday Postcard Art. I didn't realize what an expansive background in various forms of art that she had. This was an enjoyable read.

Iris Flavia said...

Fancy things like a degree - I so agree with that!
Changed my life as in not getting a stupid-fancy degree Volkswagen wanted and I lost my job (our small company hired me to Volkswagen).
It does not matter if you have a certificate but if you can DO, right?

And decouraging teachers seem to be all around in the world. It´s jealousy, I suppose...

Those are very beautiful pieces of art!

I so wish you all were available say... 30 years ago! I lost it all, I try to come back, very slowly.

To be able to have too many ideas must be bliss! (or torture?)

kathyinozarks said...

Wonderful art from Cindy-I enjoyed the interview and seeing her art very much

Divers and Sundry said...

What a beautiful variety! I enjoyed the interview and looking at these works, but I hafta admit I'm now following the google bunny trail of Bourke's parakeets. I'd never heard of them, and I'd never seen a bird like that before. I'm enchanted :)

CJ Kennedy said...

I enjoyed the art and interview

Cindy McMath said...

Thank you so much Elizabeth for interviewing me for your blog. And for all your lovely followers who took time to read it and look at my work - thanks so much! I will say you also did a fantastic job of picking art to go with the interview! Xo

Aimeslee Winans said...

Great interview, Elizabeth! Love all of Cindy's makes. I know her! We both play at Sunday Postcard Art (she's a regular, I'm an occasional). Didn't realize she'd done Artchix too! And probably some yahoo groups in common, too. Happy Christmas and New Year to you both! xoxo

My name is Erika. said...

Wonderful art and it is so nice to meet Cindy. Thank you for introducing her to me. And Cindy is quite talented, isn't she? This was a feast for my eyes and a very nic interview also. Hugs-Erika

Jeanie said...

Well interviewed, Elizabeth. And Cindy, what a fascinating woman you are, and gifted artist. A pleasure to learn more about you!

Rita said...

That was fun to hear from her and see her art! :)

Birgit said...

What a dumb ass art teacher who was not appreciating your creativity. Sometimes, I think the are just jealous b cause they can’t think outside the box. Your creativity is boundless and I love the mix d media with the person holding his head and a butterfly on the shoulders instead of the head. I love the old film stars you used. I am trying to figure out who they are but I think one might be Aan. Sheridan and the last one, a young Myrna Loy?? I am one who uses rubber stamps and actually like how so many use a stamp but each one is different. I loved seeing all your works and so wonderful to be showcased here. Your budgie is so cute and I don’t think I have ever seen a pink one

Meggymay said...

Fabulous art Cindy its good to meet you. It is a lovely interview post that I really enjoyed reading ,
Yvonne xx

Lowcarb team member said...

Lovely art from Cindy, a very nice interview :)

All the best Jan