We had the good fortune of connecting with Linda Clayton-Behr and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Linda, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I started out in the “creative career” doing graphic design. I worked as a designer for 15+ years and it left me feeling unfulfilled, like I was wasting my life. I would ask myself “What am I doing that makes a difference in this world? I’m making ads to convince people to purchase things they don’t really need. To spend their money on things that isn’t really going to make a difference in their lives in most cases. And who really benefits?” My mind wasn’t fulfilled, my heart wasn’t fulfilled and my sense of servitude, of “what am I doing to make the world better” was definitely not fulfilled. I was (thankfully) laid off, which gave me the freedom I wouldn’t have otherwise given myself as a single mother, to create, to paint. I would apply for jobs in the morning, and each afternoon I would paint. I found a following, people connected with my work. The response was overwhelming as people shared their stories of being connected to a painting I created. Watching the reactions, from tears of release, to joy, to chuckles and boisterous laughter, I realized that there is indeed magic in this world. The freedom of pursuing your dream and using your gifts/talents to bring that to another human being is nothing short of magic. When I get messages from customers stating that each day the piece of artwork they purchased brings them joy, or makes them feel empowered when they pass by it in their home brings me the fulfillment I was lacking for so long in my life.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My work is intuitive, yet there is a lot of thought that goes into each piece before starting. I think about what I want the viewer to feel and then get to work creating in that space to manifest that feeling. I started working on series based on music when people would ask about what inspires me and it really all comes down to I always am listening to music. Music is something that can turn a crap day into a better day by changing your mood or your energy level. The beauty in paintings can also bring you feelings of joy or inspire you (giving you a burst of energy). I decided that an easy way to bring people more into the space I was in when I was creating the piece would be to have them listen to what I was listening to when I created the work. The results and feedback were fantastic. I would watch people enter the gallery and try to figure out what the headphones had to do with each painting. Then watching them listen and do the deep dive into the painting. Some would dance, some would jam out, some would tear up. Most would comment about how much more they enjoyed viewing the artwork, because instead of walking by a painting for like 10 seconds, they stayed there, present in the moment and saw so much more, felt so much more. The really great thing about this was that they then carried that to the next artwork they would view. They made the conscious decision to stop and view each piece vs strolling by. Being able to bring joy into another person’s life each day is the greatest gift I could receive. I am so grateful that I have been able to and will continue to do that.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
In Minneapolis I would definitely have them come during the spring when the North East Art’s District hosts their annual Art A Whirl event. It has everything from art galleries, art projects, live music, micro breweries, distilleries, food, people watching etc. It has been voted the best Arts District in the Nation.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to thank my husband John Behr for being the person who pushed me to take the road less traveled. To pursue the “risky” career as an artist. To start putting my artwork out in the world. Without his support I would’ve continued to paint/sketch, only to hide them from the world.

Website: www.lindaclaytonart.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lindaclayton_art
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LindaClaytonArt
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lindaclaytonart
Other: https://www.etsy.com/shop/LindaClaytonArt

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