We are beyond excited to share our new artist collaboration between Codie O'Connor and Recess Pickleball!
Meet the Artist: Codie O'Connor
Codie is an abstract painter with a studio based in Austin, TX. Growing up she always gravitated towards the visual arts as the most natural means of expression. Later, at the College of Charleston, she earned a BFA in Arts Management with her sight set on spending her days working in galleries, installing curated collections of art, and picking up her own paint brushes at home. In 2017 she began painting full-time, maintaining a steady output of commissioned and series paintings, murals, and other goods.
Codie’s current work is equal parts day dream and a response to inspiration found in everyday life, channeled through the meditation of colors, blended with organic shapes and lines.
Her work is intended to be playful, warm and natural.
Tell us about yourself. How did you become a full time artist?
My name is Codie O’Connor and I am a visual artist with a studio primarily based in Austin, Texas. I sort of accidentally fell into doing this full time, It wasn’t necessarily my intention nor did I ever have the guts to plan for it. Creating things and using my imagination has always been what I would naturally do with my time. It certainly helped that I was surrounded by very creative people growing up. In college I studied and interned to work in galleries and help with installations, when I got home I’d work on my own practice, mainly for fun- like an athlete would naturally work out in their free time, I would paint. If I were to pinpoint when painting started to transform into a full time gig, it would be in 2017 when I was asked to create a series of paintings for a small business and I worked up the courage to actually take the project on-things sort of naturally snowballed from there and I’ve been making it up as I go along since.
What inspires your artwork?
Music plays a huge role in my process, but it's really never the same thing twice. Fragments of conversations, color combinations my eye landed on when traveling, anything. I wish I could distill it all into definitive categories for you, but really, what I’ve come to find is that if you’re open to it, and you’re paying attention to your environment, you can find inspiration anywhere and it’ll strike you down at a moment's notice.
Tell us more about the inspiration behind the Recess x Codie O'Connor pickleball paddles. How did you land on the colors, patterns, and shapes?
I made several mock ups (nothing new here), just having fun doodling casually like I would on a napkin at a diner. Instinctively I knew I wanted the design to have lots of movement, the colors are derived from the paintings I’m currently working on and what's bouncing around in my brain at the moment, and the line work (which tends to be a common theme in my work) is intended to feel like a remix of lines found on a pickleball or really any sports court without feeling too literal. I limited myself to only submitting the drafts that I enjoyed making the most and let the incredible team behind Recess take it from there!
What is your favorite medium?
Painting has always been the most natural medium for me and therefore the one I instinctively reach for. But really I like to try my hand at a myriad of mediums with no expectations of being “good”- my brain is happiest when I’m creating, it doesn’t matter in what form.
What other artists inspire you?
Oh wow. Okay for starters, Kaleigh Heydon, Rafael Uriegas, Adam Pogue, Ellen Siebers, Skylar Hughes, Laura Burke, and of course, my first artist crush, and a mainstay in my brain Helen Frankenthaler- but the list goes on and on, and on and on…Please pick up a pencil and write their names down, look them up and feast your eyes.
What is your current favorite color?
I don’t know if I have one favorite color right now, I’ve had my eye on a few different color combinations though, like the way orange + blue feel together. It sort of has a hold on me right now. It’s funny how when your mind fixates on a certain palette you start to notice it all around you, it's kinda magic.
How do you overcome a creative block?
I try not to force anything, I turn to other things that make me happy when it starts to feel like things arent flowing naturally. Cooking, experimenting with my camera, listening to my records, or going camping until suddenly I feel like turning how I'm feeling into something tangible again.