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Otherwise Known as SLAGLETRON

My full name is Jessica Slagle, but most of my friends call me Slagle or Slagletron. I’ve been living and working in New York City. I’m originally from Saint Paul, Minnesota.

How do you describe yourself?

Within the first couple of weeks of moving to New York City, I came across this quote from Frida Kahlo (my favorite artist). I feel that it describes me perfectly: “I used to think I was the strangest person in the world but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone         just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do. I would          imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me too.     Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it’s true I’m here, and I’m just as strange as you.”

Medium, what do you use to create?

I used to do all my work by hand – cutting out all the photographic elements and gluing them down. This tactile process was something I really    enjoyed about my work. Once I moved to the city, it became nearly   impossible to work this way. My apartment is so small so there is no place       for me to set up a work space.  It forced me out of my comfort zone and          pushed me to start working on the computer. Digital collage is something   that has brought my work to the next level. I am able to capture colors and          subtle layering qualities that I would never be able to do with traditional          collage.

Describe your work.

I’ve been told by several people that my work is like ‘high fashion on acid’   as well as ‘neo-pop art’. I think both of these descriptions describe my work well. My work is a fusion between beautiful photography and digital   collage. Each piece is a day dream captured in a single moment. I love   using tons of bright, saturated colors and subtle layers of pattern. 

What inspires you?

My work is highly inspired by my surroundings and my own experiences     within my environment. Moving to the city has drastically influenced my          work. If you held a piece up from two years ago next to a piece I created    while in New York, you would be shocked as to the differences. New York   is such a magical place, and I feel that my recent work captures the magic         I’ve experienced here. Music is another huge influence. Most of my pieces are titled after the song they were inspired from. I often find that music       helps create a siren like quality in my work – and helps to create a rhythmic      progression though out each piece.

What motivates you when you may not be inspired?

When I’m not feeling inspired and for whatever reason I have to get something done, that is usually the time where I’ll try something totally   new. Generally for me, that is the best time to try something new because I         don’t have an preconceived notion of what I want the end result to be, because I’m not in the ‘inspired’ mind set. Sometimes in these situations is when I create my best work – this is also the time when some of my worst   work gets created too. I feel that its always important to not let yourself get        stuck in a particular style – forcing yourself to work outside of your comfort          zone really helps to evolve your work.

Why do you create?

I create because I have a basic need to create. It’s my way of leaving my    mark on the world. Each piece is an extension of myself and my   experience and my thoughts. 

Describe any elaborate activities, rituals you may have done while seeking inspiration…

My senior thesis project was about art as a tool for meditation. I made        seven chakra meditation posters – while making each one I would open   that particular chakra and infuse the piece with my own energy. Hilma Af    Klint is another artist I admire, she often would invoke spirit guides and   translate their messages through her art. I’ve done something similar in my     recent work. The recent digital collages I made are all portraits of various   meditation visualizations I’ve had since living in New York City.

When did you know you wanted to be an artist?

I’ve always wanted to be an artist! I can hardly go a couple days without creating something… one time when I was three years old I painted a giant  floral scene on my parent’s living room wall using my mom’s makeup –  she was not happy about that. 😉

What do you hope to accomplish in 5 years?

In 5 years I hope to be showing my work in solo shows around New York,   as well as selling my work on a regular basis.

Which is your own favorite piece or body of work? Describe why.

My own favorite piece would probably be my ‘Transcendental’ piece. It represents my ultimate transition between traditional and digital art… as well as from small town to big city, and from adolescence to adulthood. 

Who is your favorite artist? Describe why.

My favorite artist is Frida Kahlo. Her work is brilliant and highly personal,    and she views the world the same way that I do. She is not ashamed of       who she is or what she does. I hope to be as influential in my own time as she was in hers.

Any words to live by for an artist starting out?

Don’t let anyone tell you who you are.

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