Using classic mediums like sculpture, drawing, and painting, artist Jessica Locklar portrays modern themes like gender roles and female sexuality throughout her captivating portfolio of work.
But don’t let the serious overtones of her subject matter fool you — this Atlanta-based artist has a lighthearted sense of humor and a serious love of all things water. As a Pisces, Jessica finds herself daydreaming quite often about oceans and beaches, so much so that she tapped into this self-professed obsession for our Daydream Artist Series.
Read on to learn more about Jessica’s inspiration behind her work, where her infatuation with water began, and why it’s important to daydream during this time.
Q: Tell us a little about yourself and what you do.
Jessica: Who is this weirdo sculpting tiny women in her basement? My name is Jessica Locklar, I am mostly a painter, but in grad school, I took a summer sculpture class and realized I could sculpt as well, WHO KNEW! I used to just sculpt the figure, but lately, I’ve been drawn to creating an environment for them as well — it’s a bit like playing with dolls in that I create their reality. This gives me a sense of power and control, something I have struggled with lately. THANKS, COVID-19!
Q: What does the perfect daydream look like to you?
Jessica: My perfect daydream is like a favorite book or album. Something I can slide into anywhere, anytime, and be taken somewhere else. I try and feel it with all of my senses and all of my heart and let it raise me up.
Q: What things do you consider part of your "artist's toolbox" of inspiration?
Jessica: My toolbox consists of joy, trauma, love, pain, beauty, connections and memory, fantasy, desire, lust, and the mundane. Light and dark.
Q: When are you most creative?
Jessica: I am most creative when I am not overworked or in a deep depression.
Q: If you had three rules to live by, what would they be?
Jessica: I think Kristen Ramsey (@kristenramseyart) said it best. “Be kind. Show grace. Love others. Forgive. It matters.” I know that’s more than three rules to live by — oh well!
Q: Tell us about your process and inspiration behind your artwork. What is your daydream and how can people feel inspired to daydream during these tough times?
Jessica: I made this piece after seeing some beautiful paintings by Jonathan Wateridge (@jonathanwateridgestudio) with these bright, phthalo-green-glowing bathing figures and I was inspired. I am a Pisces, so I’m naturally drawn to water and have been obsessed with Ophelia imagery since I was a child. I dream of beaches, waves, water, swimming pools, a carefree summer, youth, spending all day swimming and getting so tenderly burnt, and the feeling of warm water sliding out of your ear as you snuggle your pillow for the night, your back bared to the ceiling fan with a solid inch of aloe vera gel on your skin.
My advice for inspiration or daydreaming? Think of your favorite thing, place, people, or memory. Do not dwell on that you are not there now in body, but go there in spirit. Be grateful that you lived that moment and you can relive that moment whenever you close your eyes.
Q: What do you hope people will take away from this piece?
Jessica: I hope people will remember the cool water on their skin. The simple excitement of sinking into a pool at night, or the thrill if they’re skinny dipping!
Q: How can the community support you during this time?Jessica: You can see more of my sculptures and paintings at jessicalocklar.com, but my Instagram is more current — @Jessica_Locklar.