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Meet Savannah Simmons | Artist & Writer

Today we’re excited to introduce you to Savannah Simmons. Savannah is an Artist, Writer and is also a content partner. Content partners help Voyage in so many ways from spreading the word about the work that we do, sponsoring our mission and collaborating with us on content like this. Check out our conversation with Savannah below.

Hi Savannah, thank you so much for sitting down with us again. For folks who might have missed our initial interview, can you start by briefly introducing yourself?
Isn’t it funny how you seem to clam up every time someone asks you to introduce yourself? I can’t speak for anyone else, but I know that whenever I hear that question I immediately forget everything about myself and everything that I do… Anyway, my name is Savannah and I’m a young artist based out of Big Bear, California. My main mediums are writing and film photography. I write anything from short stories based on my life, to poetry, to music, to social media captions for clients. In terms of film, I love to shoot photos of anything that speaks to me, and have spent a large amount of time perfecting my own unique style of self portraits taken on 35mm film.

What type of art/culture do you consume? And who are some of your favorite artists?
I try to stay pretty diverse in terms of art and culture. I like to think that the more mediums I am exposed to, the more culturally informed my own art becomes. Lately, I’ve been really into books, music, and movies specifically. I try to take in art from mediums that I don’t work in more often than not, because I think that makes it easier to not get too burnt out on the current projects I am working on. Lately, I’ve been really into the musical artist Jodi. They have a sweet, melancholy sound, and I have been guilty of listening to their 2017 EP Karaoke on repeat for far too many hours while I write, or work on other artistic projects. I am patiently awaiting their newest album release in mid July. I have also been largely diving into the works of Ocean Vuong, who is an incredible author and poet. His style of writing is unlike anything I have ever experienced before; I feel like the second I finish one of his books, I immediately want to open it on page one, and throw myself right back into his world again.

Are there specific subjects or themes you return to regularly in your art? If so, what are they and do you know why?
To put that simply, yes. Almost all of my art is centered around my experiences with my mental and physical health, and my relationship with my body. I have spent a lot of time trying to break away from these themes, but it seems like I only end up diving deeper into the concept of physical bodies as time moves on. I spend so much time contemplating my own body, my health and wellness, and the normal everyday functions that go on inside of every human being, it seems almost impossible for me to channel any other thoughts and ideas into my work.

My health influences every single aspect of my life, whether it be my romantic life, my hobbies and interests, the food that I eat, or even the clothes that I wear. So, I think when you are constantly thinking about how your health might be impacted by the things that you do, that trickles down into whatever you might be creating, the mediums you are using, and of course, the subject matter. A lot of my poetry, short stories, and even my self portrait photography, hold heavy influences from the medical world, the impermanence of human bodies, and how sickness can infiltrate your entire life with no remorse.

Creating art about the health issues I experience has become such a cathartic experience for me. When I first started really diving into the heavy themes that I work with these days, I was afraid it might impact my mental wellbeing in negative ways, but it ended up liberating me and making me feel like everything I deal with is all worth it, if it can be turned into art. I love using my unique personal experiences as a way to give anyone consuming my art a peek into my own little world.

What are you besides an artist; how do you define your role in life?
I think this is such an important question. It’s almost difficult to answer because I have always had a deep internal attachment to being an artist. When I think about defining my role in life outside of that, I think about how I am someone who sees beauty in everything and loves to share that beauty. I guess you could say my role in life is to simply be a lover. A lover of everything and everyone. One of my favorite activities is simply just walking around the grocery store because you get to see people in one of their most natural states, and I think that’s really beautiful. I try to bring the same passion that I have for art into every conversation and exchange I have, even if that happens to be the aisles of a grocery store.

How did you start making art? And why do you continue to make art?
As cliché as it might sound, I am one of those people who cannot remember a time when I wasn’t making art. I remember filling up notebooks with little stories that I would spend hours writing, at a really young age. I have also always been really interested in music. I sang in as many public spaces as I could, until I graduated high school, and I even had a Youtube channel for a while, although that’s one of those things I look back on and laugh about. I got my first “real” camera when I was about twelve, and at this point in my life, I feel strange if I don’t have a camera in my hands, or around my neck. I’m really thankful that I found music, photography, and writing at such a young age. I feel like they have been my saving graces, and I really don’t know where I would be without them. So, I guess that’s why I continue making art. I had a few rocky years that I wasn’t sure I would make it out of, but I think art is really what solidified my strength and my ability to get through that period of time in my life.

Thank you so much again for sharing all of this with us. Before we go, can you share with our readers how they can connect with you, learn more or show support?
Of course!

I write a weekly newsletter where I tell stories based on my life and personal experiences. I include a digital mixtape each week that is inspired by the themes of whatever I wrote about in that weeks letter. It’s pretty cool, if I do say so myself. You can subscribe, or just read past issues at https://libraryoffeelings.substack.com/welcome
My portfolio can be found at https://savannahleesimmons.myportfolio.com/
I am also very active on my Instagram page which can be found at https://www.instagram.com/theboringfriend/

As of right now, these are the main places I share any projects I might be working on and are the perfect places to connect with me. My contact email can also be found in my Instagram bio, or by replying directly to any of my newsletters, and is always the perfect way to get ahold of me quickly.

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Image Credits
Savannah Lee Simmons

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