Illuminate Collection - Fall 2019

by Mari Robeson


It’s been a long-time, let’s say a life-time, in the making. Back when I graduated college, I went through a challenging time in my life and since it’s my nature to paint, I used Art as a way to heal myself. That was the last, and only time, I had created an original body of artwork for sale. It was life changing, very healing, and exciting!

I then went to work in marketing and advertising. I honed my skills as a graphic designer and eventually fell into another passion of mine, interior design. For many years I designed beautiful homes and restaurants. Every project was different which I enjoyed immensely. During that time I also had wonderful opportunities to use my art to design products for the home decor industry. I met many amazing people and enjoyed learning from them all.

One of my favorite parts of interior design was sketching the rooms for my clients. I saw it as a quick and easy way to relay my ideas visually. My art became the combination of designing textiles, wallpaper, and interiors all rolled into one. A couple of years ago, I even decided to write and illustrate a book about the things I had learned in life and as a designer. It too, was another very fun project.

Then life handed me a blow, that this time, I found much more challenging to overcome. One I didn’t fully process because I went straight into caring for others. After taking a long break from my work during this time, I somehow lost myself. Thankfully, almost a year ago I started a podcast in memory of my sister, to Support The Arts and share advice. We created scholarships and in the process of interviewing all these amazing artists and creatives, I started to find my joy again.

These past couple of years I spent quite a lot of time going within through hours of reflective journaling and sketching. I honestly faced the dark and light sides of myself. I chose to consciously change the way I think in a way to stay as positive as possible, even when life felt incredibly overwhelming. I forgave others. I forgave myself. I started over.

In my dreams I started to see bold and bright colors and patterns and places that made me feel happy again. It is the first time in many years where I finally feel the time is right to follow this path of creating original work and to fully embrace my life as an artist. I’ve chosen to call this first body of work the “Illuminate Collection” because I found that bringing everything in my life to the light, is not only healing, but powerful. You will see the lanterns throughout, each bringing light to different aspects of ourselves.

Many of the room details like the cloud wallpaper in this painting came to me in my dreams. The colors and patterns flow as the painting unfolds. I never really know exactly where the painting will take me. I do however, know that I am really fortunate and feel very blessed to have the time and space to create these paintings. It feels like I am coming alive again when I paint. It feels like fresh air.

Joy is an emotion most of us experience when looking at a rainbow. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you stand on this earth. Joy connects us all. It is my hope that my art makes you really, really happy when you look at it and even better, if it brings you JOY.

“Whenever you are creating beauty, you are restoring your soul. “ - Alice Walker

xoxo Mari

Illumintae with Fig Tree.jpg
Illuminate Close Drape.jpg