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Chatting with Lacey Russell


A friend directed me to Lacey's art, and I was immediately drawn to it.  I so enjoyed interviewing her, because I really see why I loved the feather: I hope that you will take time to read the story behind the feather below.  

I love that her art is simple, clean, and elegant.  I know you all will fall her pieces as much as I do!  (Also, if you live in Greenville, you are a lucky duck because you can see her work in person at the BOCO Art Show!) 

 

How long have you been painting professionally?

Professionally for about two years. Art was my childhood hobby. I took art classes all the time, but never thought art would be a viable career option so I studied Graphic Design at Auburn University thinking it was more practical career choice. Upon graduating, I was burned out on looking at the flat screen. I realized that I loved being tangibly interactive with work I created but didn’t have a way to share it as a stay-at-home mom. Thank God for Instagram!!! He was way ahead of me;). Instagram opened a whole new world for me and all artists to share and interact easily. Instagram has allowed my childhood hobby to blossom into a creative and fulfilling career and remain a stay at home mom. It is my dream job.

What do you think you are most known for?

Definitely my watercolor feathers. Some people have started calling me "The Feather Lady". I accept the name gladly because feathers have a deep and very personal meaning to me.

About 12 years ago, I was lying on my bed, eyes shut, with my head phones on. While resting and worshiping, I saw, in my minds eye, a feather. I didn't know what God was trying to tell me other than the fact that I knew He was with me. His presence was with me and I thanked him for that. As I stood up to take out my head phones, I looked in the mirror and there was a real feather on my forehead. It floored me! He later led me to Psalm 91:4, "He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.”

Now, every time I see a feather, whether on the ground or coming out of a pillow, I thank the Lord for being with me as my cover, my refuge, my shield, and rampart. I may be in a happy state or a distraught state, but either way, seeing a feather turns into a "trigger point" for me to acknowledge Him in that moment.

This really came in handy when my husband and I had a rough couple of years of marriage which led to being separated for about five months. I had a two year old and a four month old and moved back into my parents house. It was a hard, confusing time for me but I clung to Psalm 91:4 and acknowledged His presence and faithfulness.

During that five months i was drawn back to my old basement art studio and started to paint again. I posted some of my work on Instagram and it began to sell. The feathers were an expression of my trust in God’s protection and faithfulness taken out of Ps. 91. I think I saw more feathers during those hard days than I ever had before!!! God was continually reminding me that He was in control and that His will was good, acceptable, and perfect even through the hard times!!

The Lord has miraculously restored my marriage and my family. I will say, its way more fun to be on this side now... seeing the beauty that has come from the mess.

I never dreamt that my "trigger point" would turn into something that would, not only, bring me through some tough times, but also, jumpstart my creative side and lead to something that would bless others. He intentionally lined all of this up over 12 years. I think that's why I describe my feathers as part of my calling rather than my profession.

What is the scariest part about having your own business?

Keeping my balance. As the business grows, it is a challenge to balance being a wife, mother, friend, and family member with the increasing responsibilities. My husband is a caterer so he is gone a lot on weekends and nights. We both work hard to keep our balance.


What is your favorite tool you use to create your art? 

With a lot of my work, I use a pen nib and ink well. I prefer Windsor Newton ink. I love the way ink and water flow together and create such dramatic light and dark with beautiful shading.

Do you have any really large/interesting jobs you are working on currently?

I recently did a painting that will be auctioned off at a local church here in Birmingham. They called it the Psalm Project. Each artist was given a Psalm to illustrate and the musicians from the church created music to go with the it. Pretty cool! I was assigned Psalm 8 and look forward to showing it on November 1st at Cahaba Park Church.

Who are your favorite artists?

I have always loved Degas, particularly his ballerinas. I love how he captured their posture and poses.

What is your favorite part about being an artist in the south?

Welp, I don't have much to compare it to! It's all I know! But it seems that people love to support local artists. They don't feel like they have to go far away to get something amazing for their home. There are so many "small world" connections down here.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Goodness, I never saw this two years ago! But if I'd have to guess, my kids would be in school and I'd be able to paint more. I'd have artwork in galleries and my gender reveal game ("What's The Bump?") would be selling like crazy through big stores.

What is your favorite color?

Right now, blush pink.

What inspires you creatively?
Feathers ;), landscapes, textures, ballerinas, postures, music, dance, His word.