STORY OF AN ARTIST
Art has been an essential part of my life since early childhood. It wasn't until being knocked down a few times to realize how necessary it was to my livelihood that I decided to make the switch from side job to a full-time career. In late 2010, with a Bachelor's degree in Fine Art from Montclair State University (NJ) and a few small exhibitions under my belt, I drove across the country to Southern California to start my journey as an Artist. Though I stumbled for what felt like too long, it was through these mistakes I made and met helpful artists and mentors that are still a huge part of my career. Utilizing social media and advice, I was eventually greeted by a warm San Diego art community of local artists, galleries, and collectives, such as La Bodega Gallery, Thumbprint Gallery and RAW Natural Born Artists. Receiving the award for RAW’s 2013 Visual Artist of the Year catapulted my exhibit experience from Southern CA to LA, Laguna Beach, and San Francisco.
Since then my art has received recognition and awards for drawing, in print (The Studio Door’s 50 to Watch, 2018) and fairs (2018’s Jury Select's Award at San Diego's Contemporary Art Fair) to name a few. In early 2020 I received the Business of Art Scholarship, awarded and mentored by The Studio Door, San Diego Visual Arts Network (SDVAN) and Mission Fed's Little Italy ArtWalk.
In 2018, my family and I moved to the South Bay where I was almost immediately presented with an opportunity to paint a mural in town, as part of Imperial Beach’s beautification project, “Rock the Walls”. Since then I have had the pleasure of painting a mural every year since, challenging me in size and surface.
In between series of fine art and commissioned portraits and projects, I have continued to self-publish creative non-fiction books, intertwining them into workshops I have led, focusing on the importance of balancing mental and physical well-being through journaling and meditation. As a female artist and advocate for mental health awareness, my hope is to share healthy creative outlets to help build self-love and the strength needed to fuel honest communication and connections in this ever-changing world.
#mdferrera #sandiegoartist #figurativeartist #freehanddrawing #artonwood