What is your name?
Erin Michelle Trimble or just ‘e’.
Where are you from?
Born in Sullivan, Indiana on June 28th of 1980; making me 34 years old.
Where do you live?
I currently reside in Plainfield, Indiana.
As soon as I realized the potential of pencils and crayons; and pausing my Walt Disney movies so I could mimic everything that I saw. I was an only child and I think that helped my imagination; I was drawing make believe characters in preschool and my imaginary world was and is still one bit of magic that I hang onto so tightly.
Who influenced you as an artist?
Honestly, no one...not right away. The influence is embedded in my childhood, taking that only child, alone time and bringing things to life. No one in my family is/was an artist but my folks were/are very supportive. At Monrovia High School, here in Indiana, my 7th grade art teacher, Mr. Schafer was a really big influence. He paid for me to go to my first nude figure drawing college class for HS students and also made sure my art was always in school shows and such. I went to a lot of Herron High School Saturday classes with his daughter back when it was at the ‘old’ Herron; so much fun. He really pushed me, made me feel as though I had potential and that certainly gave me inspiration and influenced me. Just a few better known artists that I love and appreciate are Kathe Kollwitz, Frida Kahlo, Shepherd Fairey, Swoon and Monica Caanilao.
What is your favorite medium?
My Art Collaborative partner, Nevada Buckley King and I had a ‘BlOODSISTERS’ show a few first Friday’s ago and a fellow from the Indianapolis Star asked what it was we do? Slightly taken off guard, instead of saying, ‘We are Artists.’ I blurted out, ‘Dabblers! We dabble!’ ha-ha and that is indeed true. It is very hard for me to name a favorite because I mix so many; Watercolor, ink, pastel, found objects, installation, transfers; printing,weaving and textiles, books, jewelry...on and on; So many tools, so many ideas and possibilities.
Do you have a studio? Where is it?
I do indeed, it is my garage hooked onto my apartment. Sometimes I fantasize about extra money to have a nice, fancy studio at a different location like others I know BUT my garage is great. I sit on my cushions, on the floor, surrounded by all of my supplies and treasures; candles, music (or solitude and silence), paper, books, and all the things I need…surrounding me in a circular manner. And it is at home! To me, it is the best place and my favorite place to be.
When did you become a mother?
I became a mother on September 11th, 2003 at 1:10 pm in the afternoon….such a beautiful day.
What are your challenges as a mother artist?
Just trying to stay afloat financially, I suppose. I do not get child support so I have to work, mother and make art; I also have to have part time jobs that allow me to take my son to school and pick him up (child care is crazy!) so it is really slim pickings out there. I do have a fellow of 4 years that has given us stability, love and care and I am grateful for that. Even with our incomes, it is still a dang struggle! I always thought getting a college degree would assure financial stability, but I was a wee bit mistaken, ha ha ($50,000 I feel as though I will neeever be able to pay back), aye!
What has been the driving force behind keeping a balance between being a mother and an artist?
Balancing being a mother and an artist was of course difficult when Silas was an infant. I had no help from his father so it was Silas and I solo quite often. I made when I could; while he napped, late nights or while he was content with his swing. There would be times I would go days and weeks without making but with my first baby, I suppose that was to be expected. The driving force with raising a baby/toddler and going to college at the same time was all Silas. I wanted that degree to be an educated mother, to expand on my art knowledge/tools and to be able to get a good job…because I wanted it to benefit him and myself. Nowadays, it seems as though the driving force has been an entity all of its own.
When do you spend time making art?
When I am off work and Silas is at school, so early mornings are my favorite, around 8 a.m. Then, after Silas goes to bed at night, that is my second wind and I usually stay up way too late.
Do you want more?
I just have my one, sweet guy (11 yrs) Silas Michael. I think I would really love to have a daughter too, but it depends on my partner. I have already had a child with one man that doesn’t help; I am kind of scared to be put in that situation again. Although I have no doubt that I could raise another child alone, money unfortunately is a big part, being able to get the kiddo everything he/she needs. Baby fever is no joke! They are just so wonderful.
I would lose my sanity if I ever gave up making art!! The thought has honestly never crossed my mind. I think that things have always worked in our favor to where my art time has never interfered with me being a mother.
Do you have support from your family and friends to keep making art?
Yes, 100% from my mother, if my father were here, my tiny tribe and my dearest friends. I get doubts from some people, I pick up on vibes like, ‘it is obviously not a money making thing so why are you doing this’ like it is wasting time!? I am going to keep doing it no matter what people think. It is my career, I have spent my whole life getting to this point, making it through schooling and of course I hope to make money from it. It isn’t just the money though; it is something that I have to do every day. It is almost a compulsion,release of different emotions, it will always be therapeutic thus it is needed.
I do from the people that matter most in my life.
Has becoming a mother influenced your art?
I think that it took me back to my roots; of imaginary stuff, animals, dreams and magical things…things that are so important to children. They should be just as important to us!
They better be!! I assumed we were all equals so I hope that’s a good thinng!!Honestly, that really has not crossed my mind in that manner either…but maybe ‘re-phrased’ in my mind a bit. I had a moment while at Herron, where I realized that a majority of my class mates were almost a decade younger than me; did not have children and lived a totally different life style, which is fine! I just felt pretty ghostly for my first 2 years…even invisible to teachers; like being older and having a kid put me in some sort of high school group. And for awhile, that did give me a feeling that I wasn’t taken seriously but eventually I found a nice handful of old souls that I fell in love with and will forever hold dear in my heart; Amazing artists and such wonderful people. Now I need to ask other lady artists! I don’t know if this was just situational or a common theme.
Most folks know that I am not married and if they ask what my fellow does, I just tell them…he delivers delicious organic food and sometimes we get freebies! At times, I think I do get a defensive feeling. Again, I pick up on strange vibes that folks think that because I am an artist that I don’t do enough. I may only work a part-time job, but I do that, deal with Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus and other Auto Immune Disease symptoms, clean house, do laundry, raise a young boy, make art, have shows, run an etsy store so just because I don’t have a normal, full time job like the fellow, certainly doesn’t mean that I do any less.
What is your story?
My dad used to tell me that crows and vultures dropped me off on their door step and I was so cute they had to keeep me. I was actually born in a hospital…in rural, Sullivan, Indiana to Michael Dean Trimble and Julie Kay Meier Trimble. The greatest people I have known. My dad was a Police Officer and my ma has always been in the Mortgage Business. I started Kindergartenbin Monrovia, Indiana and graduated from there, with no more than 70 kids in my class; small town business. I was the tiny, bullied child but the 90’s changed me. I got into art more as an escape…release, music, bought a bass & amp; guitar, the riot grrrl movement, feminism and all of that combined gave me the strength to power through and figure myself out; to never let anyone make me feel bad about myself without my permission. I still have to remind myself of this at times because I am super sensitive. In between my HS graduation and now…are SO many shenanigans and stories…a tale of a young lady’s evolution; young marriage, divorce, off and on college classes, living in New Orleans for a bit, ridiculous, fleeting romantic ‘moments’, jerks, playing music in bars on open mike nights, meeting amazing people and friends, life lesson learning, meeting my sons father, giving birth, raising thatlil’ babe as a stay at home mama until preschool and taking night classes at college and being a fine art model (sticking with college this time, Silas being the major drive..to better our lives), more life lessons, becoming a single mother, the death of my father to ALS, graduating Herron School of Art, surviving, job hunting, art making It’s a long, rambling story and it isn’t done yet.
What have you learned about balancing motherhood and your passions?
Balancing these is crucial...yet I do forget sometimes when I fall into a depression chunk hole. Being a mother, the kiddo is always first and foremost. ‘Mother’ is a beautiful name and thing to be; but how can a Mother maintain her state of total well being if she has no passions? Or gives them up? We are multi-faceted and can do more than mothering. It is the passions that keep us going, as well as our children. We are some multi-tasking mother, artist, warrior, magic ladies!!
Passions are important to the soul, never give those up. You are a mother, which means that you are powerful and can do anything!! The struggle can either be temporary or permanent, but with that we must deal. Key word…multi-tasking.
What do you want to be remembered for as an artist?
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*All photos were submitted by and belong to the artist