Meet Patti and Mark Mohrenweiser of Beyond Letters. They have always enjoyed art and creative pursuits, and have long been interested in a variety of media. Calligraphy as an art form was a very exciting discovery. It was a creative outlet that allowed the expression of thoughts and emotions on many levels. While calligraphy still remains a constant in a lot of their work, a focus on mixed media, the blending of a variety of styles and materials, has begun to take center stage. Their pottery is created from vintage blocks and license plates. When they decided on a name for their business, they had no idea how appropriate the name would become!How long have you been creating your artwork?
We've enjoyed using vintage license plates and other vintage items to create our mugs, plates, and other ceramic pieces. It's a great way of bringing a nostalgic touch to an everyday object. What people may not know is that we now have plates from all 50 states, so we can make whatever state mug you might want. It has become a popular wedding gift lately...a mug for the bride and groom from each of their home states.
Do you have any notable awards or accomplishments?
We received a Best in Show award at the Crozet Art Festival in Virginia, and a first place award at St. Stephens in Cocount Grove, Florida. We also have an artwork which is going to be included in a book of illustrated quotes being compiled by Leslie Riley. We just had two of our encaustic pieces included in a North Light book of illustrated quotes compiled by Leslie Riley called Inspirational Quotes Illustrated.
What do you most love about the creative process?
Mark is much more technical in nature, so he likes to plan his pieces. I prefer to let the art dictate what comes next. I am completely comfortable with serendipity, and letting the creative process take over. I just hold on and see where it leads. It is gratifying to look at the finished work and see other people's reaction to it. That is the best!What do you remember wanting to be when you grew up?
Mark always intended to go into architecture, and his love of nature led him to landscape architecture. Patti remembers wanting to be an architect too, and then a lawyer, and then a nurse, and then a musician. But art was always there, very much an everyday connection. It was a natural transition. And having Mark join in full time was really a dream come true. The creative process is such a powerful thing, and being able to collaborate is amazing.What inspired you to start creating your artwork?
The desire to leave the workforce and be home with our children was the driving force for each of us. Being able to do this together is a daily blessing. Two of our kids are in college now, and it still continues.What do you enjoy doing besides making art?
We've become big participants in family game night...which started when our older two were home from college for the holidays. It was their idea to put the electronic devices away and enjoy an evening with no distractions. It's hard to get everyone together when they're in college, so these moments are treasured.
Quotes you love or live by?
"Every great thing starts out a little scary, doesn't it?"
On particularly rough days when I'm sure I can't possibly endure, I like to remind myself that my track record for getting through bad days so far is 100% and that's pretty good."You can see much more of Patti and Mark's encaustic & ceramic artwork at Yellow Door and online. Stay tuned for more fun & interesting info about this talented couple all week!
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