The Acrylic Paintings of Meighan West Explore Self & Feminism
Who are you?
Meighan West. I am a woman trying to explore feminism and myself through the wonderful expression of painting.
What do you do?
Acrylic on canvas
Why did you get started?
I've painted since I was a little girl. It's how I express my curiosities.
Tell us about the 1st time you knew what you were doing was the way you wanted to approach your art.
I had a vision of my mural and when I finished that labor of love and pain I realized I needed to keep exploring feminism through this medium using the raw female form.
What are you working on right now?
A collection of varied female nudes, each pose expressing a different emotion. It's called "read my tits". So often women say read my lips because men are just looking at their bodies, with this I'm hoping people can understand what these women are saying just by looking at their bodies.
Describe your creative process.
I often get inspired by an image in my head that comes from whatever I'm experiencing either through my daily life, what I'm reading at the time or what I'm learning about.
Who is your art for? Why is it important?
My art is for feminists (male or female) who want to feel the expression of women
What is the hardest part about being an artist?
Finding your confidence. Every artist is different and can be considered "better", you have to believe that what you're producing is worth sharing.
If you could tell your younger self anything, what would it be and why?
You are an artist. It is worth something. As a child art was connected to my mother and I had a very strained relationship with her so I didn't see the value in being an artist. I hid from it for a long time to distance myself from her. I should have embraced my art and lived in it, through it, as I do now.
Why is art and creativity important for the community at large?
It brings beauty and self-expression to everyone. Even those who don't feel they can express themselves in artistic ways can feel connected and represented through other peoples art.
Have you had to deal with isolation, mental illness, and/or homelessness? What did you learn from your experience?
I have self-isolated. I grew up with a traumatized mother which made me feel like I couldn't connect with people because no one would understand me. I went through therapy and worked through a lot of my childhood issues which allowed me to let in the incredible people in my life and find ways to accept love and happiness. It's a long, maybe never-ending process but it's worth it be able to fully experience the beauty in your life.