All About MJ:
Marijanel Knight is a talented visual artist who is currently focused on illustration and online teaching. She lives in beautiful British Columbia, Canada with her family. MJ has two kids, a son (21) and daughter (16). She’s been married to her hubs, Steve, for 26 years and considers herself blessed to have a family who supports her creative endeavors.
MJ is the accomplished creator of whimsical illustrations for children (and young-at-heart adults) and the maker of the character Little Missy-Mae Hedgehog who is featured on a line of greeting cards.
In her personal artwork MJ often uses a hybrid of watercolor ink and digital, but her talent in art mediums spans a large range of variety.
Marijanel began creating online video-based classes because she’s passionate about teaching art techniques and helping others find their style and discover talent.
Here’s a bit of Marijanel’s creative history and how she ended up here:
In her twenties MJ was very active in performing arts including singing, songwriting, dance and drama. At this time she also became a hair stylist, which has been a trade that she’s always worked in as a way to balance out her arts and stay in touch with her community.
In her mid-twenties Marijanel founded a children’s music production company who performed on stage throughout Canada, recording CD’s and providing educational entertainment. During this time MJ began dabbling in cute illustrations and paintings.
Through a natural course of changes, including having her children, MJ shifted from a performing arts focus to visual arts.
Through her thirties MJ focused on photography, excelling in that field and operating a busy local portrait business. To offset how busy she was with photography MJ began hobbying with pottery and it wasn’t long before she was known as a clay artist.
Marijanel gave seven years to the art of clay, developing a name for herself throughout her province. She became known for her creative sculptures, which often resembled organic twisted tree branches, and her unique functional pottery which had its own flare. Marijanel was blessed to be nominated for an applied arts award and recognized among artist peers for her work and style.
At this time MJ was also granted kids-start funds that allowed her to travel to most elementary schools in her region to host clay days where she was able to demonstrate the pottery wheel, and allow young students to make a hand-built bowl and many touched clay for the very first time in their life.
The work that MJ did in schools was like a seed planted in her heart to teach art, skills, and build confidence. It was the seed which has led to what is now MJ Art School.
How did Marijanel go from pottery to illustration?
Often if a pottery customer would order a custom piece, for instance a sculpted tea-pot, MJ would paint her vision in watercolor first. The time she spent painting and illustrating her sculpture visions led into more. Many of life's circumstances were used together to bring MJ to a place of embracing a new season as illustrator and closing her pottery shop and portrait studio.
Marijanel wasn’t too surprised by this shift in art disciples as she’d seen whimsical illustration surface in her art many times especially when her kids were little. Over the years MJ had often made characters to tell stories and drew adorable critters for greeting cards even just for friends.
This style illustration was something Marijanel had always wanted to give herself time to sink in and freedom to explore and finally the season of life had come, and here she is.
Marijanel has an online shop for her whimsical illustrations found at Marijanel.com, and here on this site MJ Art School she teaches her style and techniques to online students.
When you take a class from MJ you are not only going to learn skill, but gain confidence and have a teacher who is truly cheering for you to be successful. Marijanel pours her heart and talent into everything she does, and the classes of MJ Art School are unique, special and full of possibility for you as a student.
For any questions you can email MJ at firstname.lastname@example.org and you can find MJ's illustration shop at marijanel.com
Thanks for taking time to learn about MJ, can’t wait to see you in class!