One artist's renewed calling: Starting an arts business during a pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has been exceedingly difficult for everybody. Not knowing what to expect on a daily basis has been anxiety producing. Needing to isolate and social distance has resulted in many event cancellations and frequent disappointments. Still people are amazingly resilient. Over the last year the old adage, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” would have resulted in an ocean of lemonade. Artist Emily Peterson rode on that wave of lemonade and started her own business.


Artist Emily Peterson holds one of her paintings. She began a new business Transatlantic Chic Studios during the pandemic.

COURTESY PHOTO



Starting a business is challenging, starting an arts business amid a pandemic takes courage. Peterson began painting in high school, “I fell in love with it,” she says, “I took painting and drawing almost every semester, I would paint for family and friends.” When she went to college at Kent State she majored in fashion merchandising. “Art was just a hobby,” she says. Her studies took her abroad to England where she met her now husband. During this time, she took a hiatus from painting. Though now when they look back at the letters they exchanged, once he returned to the states, there is a theme. Emily wrote a lot about painting, how she missed it and wanted to get back to it.



A painting by artist Emily Peterson

COURTESY PHOTO


When she went to college at Kent State she majored in fashion merchandising. “Art was just a hobby,” she says. Her studies took her abroad to England where she met her now husband. During this time, she took a hiatus from painting. Though now when After her marriage, Peterson became a stay-at-home mom. She has a 5-year-old and a 3-year-old. Like many mothers of young children, she began to feel a loss of her own identity. “Right before the pandemic, we traveled to England and went to the National Gallery. I loved the paintings and talked and talked about them. My husband encouraged me to start painting again. During lockdown I was stressed out, painting was a release. Painting mentally saved me,” she explains.


A painting by Emily Peterson displayed as it would appear in a home.

COURTESY PHOTO



So, as if being a stay-at-home mom of two small children during a pandemic and trying to paint every day wasn’t enough, Peterson started an Instagram account to share her paintings. “I was nervous to share them publicly,” she admits. “But, then these amazing people purchased my paintings on Instagram. People said the way I painted gave them feelings. I want people who view my art to have a nostalgic feel, to feel transported to another time and place. I want them to bring love into a home. I put my heart and soul into my paintings. When you see them, you can tell how I feel.”


A painting by artist Emily Peterson

COURTESY PHOTO



Peterson’s business was officially launched. In addition to sales on Instagram, Peterson sold several of her paintings at The Home Store in Dover last year during the Art Walk. “Over the last six or seven months, I have honed my own style. I paint to please myself first. I do commissions that fit my personal style. Painting is my passion, I feel it is my calling,” she says. “I want to keep painting and some day have an in-home studio. My business is called Transatlantic Chic Studios. I would like to have a place people can view and purchase art with vintage goods from Europe. I truly believe when you hang original art in your home, it brings soul to your house.”

0 comments