We had the good fortune of connecting with Anna Leckie and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Anna, how do you think about risk?
There has always needed to be some level of risk taking in my career, regardless of how comfortable I was with it. I grew up knowing that I was a creative minded person. I gravitated towards creative hobbies and interests and knew that I would be the happiest in a creative field. I received my bachelors degree in Theatre at The University of Georgia and originally planned on doing the “move off to a big city and starve until you make it big” life plan. However, I got sideswiped by life and my plan dissolved. I didn’t want to have to force myself into a cubicle job, seemingly wasting my talents and my vision. If the life I want for myself is to be joyful, triumphant and filled with satisfaction and inspiration, I have to be: vulnerable. The vulnerability of starting my own business with my art was intimidating at first because it was putting something personal of myself on display every-time I create something. This risk however, is exactly why it is so rewarding and healing. The risk of not being where you imagined you would be in your career as a small business owning artist is present as well. I have to make myself stop and smell the roses and see how far I’ve come in my career in such a short amount of time. I will say I am less intimidated by risk after working on my business the past few years. Risk in my opinion is a necessary ingredient to build a life you really and truly want. I don’t want to settle for less when I can work towards my goals everyday even if it isn’t exactly like I pictured. I often have to take risks when doing work outside of my comfort zone, that is how I grow and become a better artist and business woman.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am an Artist and Small business owner currently based out of Athens, Georgia. I work as a commissioned artist, free-lancer, creative designer, and as an independent artist all over the United States. I have been revolving around the world of creation ever since my first memory. I have always communicated visually and shared my view of the world through an artistic lens. I have never stopped my pursuit of any medium that allows me to do that. Within my business Art 4 I have been lucky enough to find a way to be of service through my art. I do freelance art for others as well as sell my own personal work. The commissioned work allows me to create incredibly meaningful gifts for people: something to commemorate an anniversary, birthday, marriage, or the passing of a loved one. It allows me to honor their pets, a prized memory in their lives, or create something for a marriage proposal, a prop for a theatrical performance, even drum head for a band. I have expanded my work into the corporate atmosphere in 2020 by illustrating children’s books, logo design, and book cover design amongst many more projects. I have been challenged and am truly never bored in my pursuit to help people with the art that I make. My soul finds its way onto the canvas as I create these things for others! This year I have dedicated half of my time in the studio to make the art that I want to make. I am inspired by animals, colors, emotional healing, working through traumas through art and experimenting with textures. I am inspired by the heights of joy as well as the depths of suffering and transmutation. I find both to be incredibly valuable experiences when making art. I sell prints of my work and originals as well as merchandise. I want my art and creative business to be constantly evolving and expanding. I want to grow my own brand with my personal work as well as broadening the scope of my commissioned work. My ultimate goal within my business is to touch someone’s life with my art, whether I am handing them a commission or if they are seeing my work and it makes them feel something. I hope it can make them feel recognized or excited or intrigued.
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?
A day in Atlanta is never boring. Undoubtedly my tour of the city would start with a stout cup of coffee most likely from Village Coffee House in Little Five Points. My idea of a good time would be browsing the thrift stores and small shops while moving over to Ponce to continue shopping for unique items. I would eat at one of my favorite restaurants Minero’s in Ponce Market and grab the best tacos in the entire world, in my opinion. Getting outdoors on our tour and enjoying some fresh air would be perfect in Piedmont park. I always love spending a day at the aquarium because I love animals and they are often the subjects of my art. Later on, a comedy show at Variety Theatre would be a great start to the evening. Finishing the night in Majestic Diner would be tasty and entertaining. Who knows what could happen though, nothing wrong with a little spontaneity.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Though there are a million shout outs I could give to people who inspire me everyday, I think the main people I have to thank for pushing me to give my all to my Art Business is my support team of people over the years that have encouraged me to never give up on myself and to keep working my butt off on the things that I love. I have a very close friend named Johnette who has believed in my talent and my capability to make a difference in my clients lives. My best friend Mariah is always there to hear me vent when I am doubtful or stressed. My partner Jacob has heard my countless ideas of how to expand and he gets to witness my hyperactive eclectic moods in their full creative swing. Art is powerful and it is a powerful healing tool which I have used to come through the darkest times in my life. My best friends have pushed me to be a light in the lives of others with my visual art, and to create to make a difference in the world. Never once have they doubted me or belittled my desires to be a fine artist and make a living in this line of work. My supportive friends are the reason I started making art and getting paid for it. After painting a drum head for my friends band I shared it on social media and it go circulated on social and I started getting inundated with commission requests, thus the start of my career in art and my business Art 4. Thank you to all of the creative people out there who inspire me by using their gifts in the world to make a difference in this life. Thank you to everyone who follows their joy instead of their fear!