We 💛 artists. YellowDog has collaborated with many talented artists over the years — usually by making prints of their original works. We’ve helped artists productize their art with everything from giclee prints on canvas and archival posters to stickers and postcards.
In this series, we interview a new artist each month and talk to them about the life and business of being an artist here in Colorado. Today we’re talking to Anita Ashfield-Salter, the creative mind behind Monkey Mind Design.
YellowDog: Hi Anita! Can you briefly tell us what kind of art you do?
Anita Ashfield-Salter: I love design, illustration, and making things by hand. I am currently concentrating on greeting cards and art prints. I am a digital artist and work on a Wacom drawing tablet. I use a variety of digital brushes like gouache, watercolor, and chalk which allow me to work in a painterly style.
YD: What has been your journey into an artistic career?
AAS: Having grown up in Santa Fe, New Mexico, my artistic style and point of view has been heavily influenced by folk artists. I studied Fine Art and Design in college. After leaving the Graphic Design world, I discovered my love for drawing all over again.
In the Fall of 2016, I started focusing on daily drawings and making personal art. This helped launch the art licensing side of my business. It’s been a dream come true to license and sell my artwork to big box stores and independent gift shops.
YD: Describe your artistic style in three words.
AAS: Whimsical, colorful, happy.
The Business of Art
YD: How do you get the word out about your art?
AAS: I love posting on Instagram. It allows me to tell a bit about each piece I share. I also have an art agent who represents my work online and at licensing shows in New York and San Francisco.
The Artistic Life
YD: What has been the proudest moment in your artistic career?
AAS: Seeing my artwork in the gift shop of The Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe. I can’t explain how proud and grateful I was to see my art in a museum I used to visit as a child. I was one of twelve artists featured in a sugar skull calendar.
YD: What part of being an artist do you like the best? Least?
AAS: The notion that I can come up with an idea, make a quick doodle and then work the piece from its simple raw beginnings into something I really like and I know others will too.
The part I like the least is creative dry spells. They never last long but are stressful when they pop up.
YD: Where do you go virtually or in-person to experience great art?
AAS: I love going to exhibits like Frida Kahlo and Degas at the Denver Art Museum. Whenever I travel I try to squeeze in a quick museum visit. Virtually, Instagram and Pinterest are my daily dose of inspiration.
Are you a dog or cat person?
Dog and rescue all the way.
Early bird or night owl?
Go-to drink of choice?
Mornings: Matcha green tea soy latte with lavender honey. Evenings: Any drink with a salted rim.
What show are you currently binging?
All shows HGTV
Any book you are currently reading?
My latest audible book is The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle by Steven Pressfield.
What is your favorite podcast?
Creative Pep Talk with Andy J. Pizza
What do you miss most about the pre-pandemic life?
Concerts at Red Rocks
YD: Thank you so much for sharing, Anita! We always love it when your greeting card designs pop out of our printers. Keep ‘em coming.
Where Can We Find You?
Would YOU like to be featured as an Artist We Love? We’re always looking for local artists, makers, and designers to feature in this series. Get in touch to find out more!
Artist We Love: David Martinez
Artist We Love: Mallory McCamy
Artist We Love: Robin Faye Gates
Artist We Love: Karla Horst
Artist We Love: Sara-Lou Klein of BirdHead Creations
Artist We Love: Georgann Low