Friday, September 5, 2014

Cheryl Maeder: A True Original

 Image courtesy of Tony Arruza
Today’s post is about the truly one of a kind, ‘original’ artist, Cheryl Maeder. She is not only a Fine Artist Photographer, but also a designer of Gardenhouse, a home décor line for outdoor and indoor living spaces. She’s also the designer of a line of nature-inspired wall coverings, ‘GardenWalls’, falling under her Gardenhouse brand. Her work was recently selected in a curated exhibition for Foster Care by Hamburg Kennedy NY and to be exhibited along side Diane Arbus and Sally Mann. Before I say more about my personal take on Cheryl, I feel as though I should mention her websites well worth recognition. and As for her history, well, she’s arrived at a pretty amazing place and we’ll let your imagination take it from there as of now. Hopefully, we’ll get there in the future.

Cheryl Maeder is truly one of a kind. Whether admiring from across a room or with a three foot separation of space between you, being in her presence is a true pleasure. How perfect our introduction was. I’d been in her store multiple times (Gardenhouse in the Northwood area of West Palm Beach). In fact, in a former blog, I’d written about the store, sharing images of her work and marveling at the many talents she possessed. Little did I know, I’d have the pleasure of sitting down with her to chat about the art of life.

I could go on and on about her talent. I could tell you the details of how with her was born what I like to refer to as the photographic “let down your hair and get real” model movement. This would be when Cheryl realized that we’d all witnessed the airbrushing and perfectly made-over looks and were ready to remember the beauty found in women “as-is (or were)”. I could speak of all of the places she’s lived and the amazing experiences she’s had in life as an artist, a photographer and incredibly creative mind.

Rather, in describing Cheryl, I’d like to focus on my personal experience with her (the rest will speak for itself). I walked up to a coffee shop where I saw a woman in all white. It took me two seconds to figure out through the sea of people that it was Cheryl Maeder I was looking at. Little did I know what a colorfully white canvas she would turn out to be. She was an artistic statement dawned in white. It was perfectly Cheryl as a perfectly free spirit. She’s was and is the most beautiful cross between free spirit and driven woman. Insert my random analogy: you can’t paint the canvas until you’ve cleared (or cleaned) the dust. I’m not actually sure that’s accurate, but it is how I feel about her approach to life and creative expression. Again, the white made perfect sense.

The clutter was cleared and she was free to just be her. There was no beating around the bush, nothing to hide and she was comfortable in her own skin, allowing her to say what she thought and I can assure you it was worth the listen. She spoke of not letting others cloud your creativity and how crucial it is to work together rather than creating walls around your creativity and artistic development. She spoke of not being afraid to go for it in life and to never set limits on that “it”. Even more beautiful, she took the time to give credit to the person that consistently stands beside her; her husband. Allowing the beauty in that story to remain private, I’ll share one of the most beautiful phrases I’ve heard in a while when referring to her encounter with him. According to Cheryl “He just felt like home”. That might be the very best way to think of Cheryl. When you are with her, you are at home and home is an incredibly inspiring place.

Thank you, Cheryl for taking the time to meet and share a portion of your day with me. It was an absolute honor.

Warmest Regards,


No comments:

Post a Comment