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Meet Miranda Pikul

Today we’d like to introduce you to Miranda Pikul.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Miranda. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
For as long as I can remember I always wanted to be an artist in some form, probably because I grew up in an environment where I was constantly exposed to the arts and culture within my community. So I’m lucky to have had that inspiration from a young age. I don’t think I started to take my work seriously though until I was twenty years old when I had my first real art show at a first Friday event at a shopping center in my hometown, Scranton Pennsylvania. This event was the first time I put myself out there as a painter and the reactions I received in return were what made me realize, “Wow I can do this.” Shortly after that, I had an opportunity to move across the country to California. From then on I dedicated any free time I had to paint and I became the sort of obsessed, its one of the only things that have ever made me feel like I have a purpose. It wasn’t until I moved to California, more specifically San Diego, that I came into my style, and this style wasn’t anything I intended to obtain it just sort of happened after years of experimentation. More recently I have been branching out into installation work and creating three dimensional paintings that you can walk inside of. Installation wasn’t something I ever thought I would be so passionate about its something I hope to continue with, because I very much enjoy making an interactive art experience for the viewer.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I must admit it has been anything but smooth, especially since moving across the country and being on my own. One of the first struggles I had, probably about two years ago now, I had left my job as a barista and for the first time found it to be very hard to find another job, so I was unemployed for a while and I haven’t yet gotten to the point where I’m confident enough in my ability to be a full time artist. When that happened I sort of stepped back and decided I would go try community college out, so I guess you can say I sort of panicked. But no, I’m glad it happened, otherwise I don’t think I would have ever even considered going back to school and taking art classes, because I’m self taught so it never appealed to me much before this. But I have learned more than I ever thought possible and have met so many wonderful people since enrolling, so for that I am grateful. Despite all of the other impossible struggles that forced me out of my comfort zone, in the end, they have only made me stronger and there is always a new lesson I can learn when I find myself in doubt.

Tell us more about your work.
I mostly focus on an oil painting that has some form of narrative to it, I want the viewer to come up with their interpretation of what is going on within the painting or installation. Sort of like that common phrase you always hear, “It’s up for interpretation.” I mean that quite literally when I present my work in shows. Psychology is something else I have been studying in school for the past two years and the human brain has always fascinated me. I thoroughly enjoy the responses people come up with when they try to break down my work because each response is always completely different! I suppose if there is anything that I am most proud of, it is a simple fact that I haven’t given up yet. When you tell people you want to be a painter, they sort of look at you as if you are insane. At the same time, so many people have come across my work at shows or festivals and you can tell my art impacted them in some way, and they remind me to keep going and to never stop. So I’ve always been so grateful for these people who I have come across and who I’ll most likely never see again because they are the reason I’m still working as hard as I am. My only goal, in the end, is to just inspire others, as others have inspired me.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Hmm luck, I’m not sure. I do always joke around that I have bad luck because I was born on Friday the 13th, but no, in all honesty, I’ve been very lucky so far, just for the mere fact that I have even been able to survive out here in California for as long as I have. I have been here for nearly four years now, I’d say that is some damn good luck right there.

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Image Credit:
Josie Hanson

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