Creator Spotlight: Mindy Byrd

October 20, 2022
By Claire Xue

As of August 2020, myself, my partner, and our 3 years old and now 10 months old decided not to renew our lease, but all of our belongings in storage hitched our travel trailer and took off to tour the country safely from our socially distant home on wheels.

" I like to use color to add depth and dimension to the overall image while drawing the eye in toward the subject. " ‍

What does a week of life look like for you? What do you do each weekday?

We had been quarantined in Portland, Oregon basically since the birth of our youngest, far away from all our family back in Texas and decided this was the safest way to see them and explore nature during a worldwide pandemic. My partner and I are both photographers and artists, able to work remotely during this time on the road, so we’ve packed a small studio, printer and supplies to make freelance road life more manageable. It’s a delicate balance with two little ones, but we are making forever memories with each other and bonding more than ever. Being on the road has been creatively inspiring for both of us, allowing us to brainstorm new ideas and growth for our future as creatives while both the industry and the world adapt to this new normal. 

How do you incorporate colors in your work?

Color is a major factor in my work, I’m always searching for the perfect balance of color, texture and shape. I’m currently drawn to bold, vibrant colors that compliment each other, red and orange shades are my favorite at the moment. Red is such a powerful color, one I subconsciously gravitated toward when I was pregnant with my first child almost 4 years ago. It must have been a maternal strength from within, if I go back and look at my work I can see a definite shift from a softer more muted palette to a bold vibrant palette right around the time he was born. In my collage work, I like to use color to add depth and dimension to the overall image while drawing the eye in toward the subject.   

How do you define/find pieces/props that work for your aesthetic? 

I’ve just recently begun to dive into creating sets for my collage work and I’m really enjoying the process. Most of my work up until now has lived in a flatter, more two-dimensional world using paper cutout shapes as my props. I’ve moved away from exclusively shooting all my collages overhead to occasionally creating a diorama-type environment using various objects as my added texture to the scene. I’m fortunate that my partner uses a lot of found objects and props in his work, so I’ve been able to share some of his pieces to use in my own projects. Thrift stores, art supply stores or even creating my own objects by hand have been my go-to ways of collecting pieces and props lately, and Moodelier has definitely been a game changer for set pieces. I’m so excited to play and explore different ways to utilize them in my work moving forward! 

What is your favorite type of project to work on?

I love a true collaboration, one where the client has total trust in me as an artist and will let me take their concept and run with it. This can be a rare occurrence with bigger brands sometimes, but it’s a beautiful thing when the stars align with the right client. I’ve also had the most fun working on personal projects with fellow creatives when we are all working through new ideas, it’s such an inspiring thing to see a brand new idea come to life with a team of people you admire. That’s definitely something I miss terribly right now during the pandemic, the creative recharge you get with collaboration. 

" I want to further explore the idea of using them as collage elements within my set design, there are seemingly limitless ways to utilize each one!‍ "

How do you incorporate Moodelier pieces and other props into your workflow? Can you show us some photo examples?

I recently had the opportunity to work with Moodelier on the most recent creative course bundle with a group of super talented artists, it was such a wonderful experience! It really put working on the road to the test, I filmed the video portion of my project and created the final images in one afternoon at a friends house the day before we left Texas s few months ago to head to our next destination. I recorded all the audio in our car in various state parks along the way after putting the kids to bed and the same good friend pieced the whole thing together remotely. This was my first time working with Moodelier pieces, and I treated them like collage elements for this specific project. It was really cool to use this opportunity to work through a new idea in real time for the tutorial, I hope others are inspired to try new things and work through new ideas with me. I’ve been brainstorming like crazy for the next several personal projects I have in mind and can’t wait to create more with these pieces. I want to further explore the idea of using them as collage elements within my set design, there are seemingly limitless ways to utilize each one!

What are your enneagram types? 

I am an Enneagram 9 all the way with a 1 Wing. I think my focused 1 Wing keeps my 9 head from floating away in a daydream. I’m also a Libra, so the idea of balance and harmony is basically the ruling factor in all aspects of my life. Creatively, this plays heavily in my collage work as I’m alway searching for a balance between color, texture and shape. 

Who and what are your inspirations currently? Any apps and accounts that we should follow that have been helpful or inspiring for you?

Like most people, I’ve found myself scrolling Instagram more frequently during this pandemic. This can be good and really bad, but the great part is that I’ve been able to keep up with artists I love and discover new artists I admire. I’ve been drawn to all types of work lately, from straightforward photography to painters to mixed media artists. I think it’s always a good idea to look outside your own creative lane and absorb all kinds of work, you never know what might spark something in your own mind. Here’s a shortlist of just a few people I’m currently inspired by (IG handles included if applicable)

Barbara Kasten (not on Instagram)

Ashley Mary  @ashleymaryart

Quentin Jones @quentin_jones

Savana  Ogburn  @savanaogburn

Tyler Mitchell @tylersphotos

Cho Gi Seoul @chogiseok

Doan Ly @doan_ly

Lane Walkup @earthtolane

Obidi Nzeribe @obidinzeribe

Camila Falquez @camilafalquez

Monique Baumann @baumannmonique

Jazz Grant @jazzgrantstudio 

All photos by @Mindybyrdlegs



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