Borrowed from A Silent Film’s website:
Catherine Marie Thompson is the artist behind all of the images used for the Sand & Snow packaging. We caught up with her in Portland to talk about it all…
Hey Cat, thanks for talking with us. So you’re based in Portland, Oregon. Being a very contempoary, art-based town, do you find living there helps you with your creativity and opportunity as an artist?
Absolutely. The creative community here is very alive and vibrant, which provides constant inspiration, open communication about creative ideas and doesn’t limit my creativity in any way. It’s a unique city to live in and that is why I am here. Any given day I could meet someone with a new project to work on or space to have an exhibition. Plus, it’s always interesting to be surrounded by artists.
You’re part of an installation show in Times Square soon right?
Yes! I submitted a portfolio to participate in an unprecedented, large scale art exhibition in Time Square and was voted in by people from all over the world to participate. The goal is to get people to stop and look at art in a place that is very busy and generally full of advertisements. The exhibition is put on by a company out of NYC called Artists Wanted, which gives recognition to new creative talent.
Tell us about the cover painting for Sand & Snow, ‘You Are Small’…
‘You Are Small’ is a painting I did that organically captured my thoughts and feelings. I grew up in the mountains of Idaho and have spent a lot of time on the road traveling. I love to watch the landscape change, the colors morph into bold highlights… I am very inspired by nature. I chose the title ‘You Are Small’ because that is how I feel when in the presence of such great natural beauty. All my stresses seem so small in comparison and it is very comforting. For me, mountains have a sense of Home and these unique mountains I painted emerged onto the canvas straight out of my subconscious. Like everything in nature, the mountains are in a state of transformation, though their lifespan is much greater than ours, and the liberties I took in this painting represent that.
You did a total of four paintings for the campaign. Do you have a favourite piece or is there one that holds more sentimental value to you?
I’m torn on this one. ‘You Are Small’ holds a special place for me, but the others do as well. I like the “eagle” piece I did for the album because of the way the wings melt into the sky. Both pieces show that constant transformation of nature that is a common theme in my work, but in different ways. But I also really like the abstract texture piece I did, which has a way of referencing both the terrestrial and the extraterrestrial all at once. I like keeping the interpretations open in my work, it invites the viewer to pose his or her own questions, or thoughts on the work. When people come up with a conclusion about a painting’s meaning, I believe that they are all correct, there is no right or wrong answer.
Are you pleased with how the paintings were used? The layout utilising the diamond shapes must have been a surprise to you the first time you saw it?
Yes! I love how the album turned out. It was so fun to see it in the flesh for the first time. The diamonds are fantastic and I enjoy the way they are used throughout the booklet. I really love geometric shapes, too and the way that plays off of my work looks great. I also appreciate that the lyrics to your songs were placed in the booklet. Not everyone does that and I find it to be nice when that happens. It’s very clean and modern, but also practical. I can’t wait for the vinyl to come out.
Where can people check out more of your work?
My work is online at catmt.com and I keep a blog where I show pieces in development, sketches and what is inspiring me whether it’s visual art, music, fashion or architecture, etc. The blog can be accessed through my website.