fbpx vie magazine subscribe button

Finding Magic in Art

A Childlike Wonder

Artwork by Talula Christian

On the walls of Talula Christian’s home, the smiling face of Mr. Rogers might be neighbors with the Golden Girls, while rock’n’roll stars like Freddie Mercury and David Bowie could be flanking a scene from Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Christian describes the space, adorned with her colorful pop culture icons and other illustrations, as her own little world. The Boston-based artist has been drawing since she was a child, but it wasn’t until around 2014 that she discovered a love for the whimsical celebrity portraits that have become her favorite to paint. Sometimes adorned with glitter, pearls, and other trinkets, her Antoinette series features a variety of celebrities whom she admires—both past and present—all sporting tall, extravagant pouf hairstyles reminiscent of the collection’s namesake.

VIE featured several of Christian’s paintings in the 2019 Artist Issue, and we were thrilled to catch up with her again to discuss the evolution of her work.

VIE: Tell us a little about what you’ve been up to since we last spoke. How has your art career evolved, and what new ideas have you been working on?

TC: My work with my Antoinette collection has continued to be my main focus since we last spoke. I get a lot of pleasure in creating them, and thankfully, my customers have continued to support me and make it possible for me to keep a focus on this collection. Recently, I’ve considered stepping away from them for a bit to work on a new collection, but I know I’ll keep coming back to them.

VIE: We’ve seen some new styles from you lately, including a series of images and movie scenes with illustrated characters whose faces are not shown. What inspired this new collection? Is the lack of faces a significant detail that aims to say something or just a style choice? It’s interesting to see this contrast from your very detailed celebrity portraits.

TC: Growing up, movies—especially classic movies—were my favorite hobby. I would sit in my room for hours watching and sketching my own costume designs for the films. I ended up getting a BFA in costume design thanks to the inspiration some of those films gave me. So, I have a long history of being inspired by movies. I guess my Antoinettes show that as well.

The movie sketches were something I started for fun. I would love to say that the choice of not showing the faces had a deeper meaning, but truthfully, it was just to save me time. The ability to watch a movie that I loved and quickly sketch a scene from it brought back some of that happiness I felt as a kid sitting in my room doing the same thing.

I started to feel some of that magic that I felt as a child, and that helped me continue to create and enjoy creating.

VIE: How have recent events such as COVID-19 and other changes in the world affected your art?

TC: The isolation that COVID has brought has affected my art in certain ways. I noticed recently that I was no longer getting the same enjoyment from painting. I was starting to not want to draw, and I had to find new ways to bring myself out of that state of mind. I started to get back into things that inspired me as a kid. I started reading more about Mr. Rogers, someone I loved back then. I started to look at books of Disney animators. I started doing the movie drawings and then I started drawing Disney characters for my warm-up sketches every day. I started to feel some of that magic that I felt as a child, and that helped me continue to create and enjoy creating.

VIE: You are a traveler, normally. Has the past year affected this pastime for you and your fiancé, and has it affected your work or ideas?

TC: Normally, we would travel around New England quite often, especially during the summer. It’s been disappointing to not be able to travel, but it also feels like a small price to pay for the health and safety of others as well as ourselves. Luckily, we were able to follow the travel guidelines and take a small day trip here and there this past summer. Being able to get out of the house on occasion and be outside by the water helped rejuvenate my spirit. I wouldn’t say that my work was affected solely by the lack of travel but more by the isolation that all of us have been challenged with this past year.

VIE: How has living in Boston been an influence on your work? What do you love about the area?

TC: I’m actually from a small town in southern Missouri but I’ve lived in the Boston area for ten years now. I don’t think that my work tends to be influenced by where I live; it is influenced more by my current interests and, at times, my mood. I would say that where I live influences my mood, though, and in that way, it might affect my work. My favorite thing—and the thing that inspires me the most—about New England is being by the coast. Knowing that I can get to the ocean easily if I wish brings me peace for some reason. There’s something magical about the water, wild and misbehaving. I feel a connection and I think that would be the main reason I want to continue living by the coast.

VIE: Are there any ideas or art forms that you have always wanted to explore but have been too busy or afraid to do so?

TC: I’ve always wanted to write and illustrate a book of my Antoinettes! I’m not sure it’s something that will ever happen, but I think it would be a ton of fun. My Antoinette collection is partly about drawing people that I find inspiring for the things they contributed to the world through their art. I always thought it would be fun to choose fifty people and talk about the amazing things each person did, and then have the coinciding page show them drawn as one of my Antoinettes. I hope that I get the opportunity to create that someday!

VIE: Why do you think art is important to the world?

TC: I know some people might not agree with me but I feel that, to some degree, we are sustained by art. This past year, pretty much everything I’ve done to entertain myself or to help lift my spirits has been some type of art. Watching a TV show or sitting down and enjoying a movie, getting lost in a book, painting, listening to music, cooking a nice meal—all these things that help ease my fears or concerns for a moment are creative outlets. I would have found this past year even harder without some type of art to help me escape from the world, even if just for a moment.

VIE: Are there any projects coming up in 2021 that you’d like to share?

TC: I’m currently working on a couple of new things, but I’m not sure I can share those quite yet. I’m constantly working on new projects and commissions and sharing them on my Instagram, so stay tuned!

VIE: Thank you, Talula!

— V —


Follow Talula Christian on Instagram @talulachristianart to keep up with her most recent work. To purchase her work, find her on Etsy at TalulaChristian.etsy.com, or see more of her paintings and illustrations at TalulaChristian.com.



Read Responsibly

VIE Magazine January 2021 Special Commemorative Edition
VIE Magazine September 2020 Wanderlust Issue, Fancy Camps, The Idea Boutique
VIE Magazine August 2020 Art & Culture Issue, Nathan Alan Yoakum Art
VIE Magazine - Architecture & Design Issue - July 2020
VIE Magazine - Decor and Home Issue - June 2020
VIE Magazine May 2020 Entertainment Issue, Leslie Odom Jr
VIE Magazine - April 2020 Culinary Issue
VIE Magazine March 2020 The Fashion Edit, VONDOM, Alys Beach Fl, Digital Graffiti, Tres Chic, isidro dunbar Modern Interiors, Digital Graffiti Festival
VIE Magazine February 2020 Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine - Travel Issue - January 2020 - Tanzania Safari Cover
VIE Magazine - Women's Issue - December 2019 - Tina Brown Cover
VIE NOV19 Goodness Issue
VIE Magazine, September 2019 Art & Culture Issue, Paul Hanninen
VIE Magazine - August 2019 - The Architecture and Design Issue
VIE Magazine - July 2019 - The Artist Issue
VIE Magazine - June 2019 - Fashion Edit
VIE Magazine - May 2019 - Culinary Issue
VIE Magazine - April 2019 - The Health & Wellness Issue
VIE Magazine - Special Entertainment Edition - March 2019
VIE Magazine February 2019 Luxury Homes & Technology Issue with Robbie Antonio of Revolution Precrafted
VIE Magazine - January 2019 - Southern Sophisticate Issue Cover
VIE Magazine - Special Anniversary Travel Edition - December 2018
VIE Magazine - The Goodness Issue - November 2018
VIE Magazine - The Art & Culture Issue - October 2018
VIE Magazine - Home & Garden Issue - September 2018
VIE Magazine - August 2018 Animal Issue
VIE Magazine - July 2018 Architecture & Design Issue - Subscribe to the magazine!
VIE Magazine - June 2018 Travel & Tech Issue
VIE Magazine - May 2018 Couture Issue
VIE Magazine - The Culinary Issue - April 2018 Cover - Chef James Briscione and Brooke Parkhurst
VIE Magazine - The Entertainers Issue - March 2018
VIE Magazine - February 2018 Destination Travel Issue
VIE Magazine - January 2018 Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine, The Sophisticate Issue, December 2017
VIE Magazine - November 2017 Art & Culture Issue
VIE Magazine - October 2017 Home & Garden Issue
VIE Magazine | September 2017 | The Stories and Storytellers Issue
VIE Magazine - The Adventure Issue - August 2017
VIE Magazine - July 2017 - Art & Artist Issue
VIE Magazine - The Voyager Issue - June 2017
VIE magazine 2017 March-April Cover South Walton Fashion Week
VIE Magazine - January/February 2017 - The Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine - Nov/Dec 2016 The Sophisticate Issue
christian siriano vie magazine september october 2016 vie magazine
the modern minimalist issue
Summertime!
the culinary and couture issue march april 2016 vie magazine
the voyager issue alys beach vie magazine january february 2016
cultural issue vie magazine november december 2015
home and garden issue vie magazine september october 2015
the art and style issue vie magazine july august 2015
the wedding issue 2015 May June vie magazine
the food and fashion issue vie magazine march april 2015
the travel issue vie magazine january february 2015
the music issue vie magazine 2014 november december
The Animal Issue vie magazine september october 2014
the home and garden issue vie magazine july august 2014
the wedding issue vie magazine may june 2014
emeril lagasse food and fashion vie magazine
the men's issue january february 2014
the music issue november december 2013 vie magazine
the home and garden issue 2013 october september
the wedding issue vie magazine july august 2013
the artist issue may june 2013 vie magazine
the food and fashion issue march april 2013
the men's issue january february 2013 vie magazine
The Holiday Issue
the love issue july august 2012
the all american summer may june 2012
the entertainment issue march april 2012
the fashion issue vie magazine winter 2011
the home and garden issue vie magazine fall 2011
the anniversary edition vie magazine summer 2011
the wedding issue vie magazine spring 2011
vie magazine the holiday issue 2010 Dec
vintage swimsuits vie magazine 2010 Fall
judith march designer vie magazine summer 2010
wedding giveaway vie magazine spring 2010
holiday gift guide vie magazine winter 2009
emarketing explosion vie magazine fall 2009
tribute to mother's day vie magazine summer 2009
james and robert redford vie magazine spring 2009
zz top vie magazine fall winter 2008
project dreams vie magazine new york fashion week
Sign-up for VIEmail

Sign up for VIEmail

X

A LIFESTYLE