Even as a child in Chamblee, Georgia, Angelic Martin, better known as “Angel,” was always making things from whatever materials came to hand, even digging up clay from the creek bank (although she admits those creations always fell apart since she didn’t have a kiln back then). Throughout her life, she says “working with my hands and clay has been one of the things I’ve always enjoyed the most.” Twenty-one years ago, the Martin family moved to Starkville, Mississippi. Since then, Angel has exercised her creativity in many ways: catering, cake decorating, sewing costumes for school plays, creating most of the decorations for special school events, and being an active band parent – right up until her daughter’s graduation from college. She also teaches after-school programs in art and pottery.
Angel does wheel, slab, and hand-sculpted work, and says she loves finding out what different types of clay will do in different situations. She also works with watercolors and acrylics and loves pushing the boundaries of the materials here as well. As an artist, she feels that the more you do, the more you learn and the more you want to push the boundaries of what your materials and tools can do. While she has created lots of pieces that she likes, Angel has yet to create that one favorite piece that she can’t let go. Her creations have gone to people all over the country, including New York, Ohio, North Carolina, and California. She jokes that she expects one of these days to be on “Antique Roadshow” and learn that a piece is now worth $100,000, at which point she will finally feel that she’s “made it!”
When asked for advice to give aspiring artists, Angel suggests: “Just keep trying to create. Look at things around you, and see if you can re-create them. Just constantly do it. Don’t give up. It’s not always going to be a perfect piece the first time; so if you keep working at it, you’re going to get better at it. And if that’s not the particular medium for you, check another one. There are so many different art mediums out there, you just have to find the one that speaks to you, that helps you express what you’re wanting to express.”
By Monique Troth
Taken from Magnolia State of Mind 2014 edition. The official magazine of the Mississippi Craft Show. www.magnoliastateofmind.com
About the Mississippi Craft Show
Mississippi Craft Show – August. The state’s only 100% Mississippi Handmade art and craft show. Featuring handworks from Mississippi craftsmen. www.mscraftshow.com
Handmade USA Show – March. The same quality handworks you expect at the August show from Mississippi craftsmen and also from across the region. All 100% handmade in the USA. www.handmadeusashow.com