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Meet Jeni Himmer

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jeni Himmer.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
My artistic journey has been a fun one and I couldn’t have done it without the help, motivation, and inspiration of both my parents and boyfriend! My father was a software developer and very “techy,” buying the newest technology. This sparked my video game obsession at an early age and taught me to create my own adventures and find inspiration in the strangest of places. My mother taught me to create with my hands, putting me through several art classes and later wanting me to focus on a journal throughout my home-schooled years.

Throughout most of my childhood, the journal actually plays a very significant role in my artistic career/development. The book began when my mother wanted me to write down the lesson plan I completed each day, though I quickly grew bored of writing and decided to draw comics instead. I developed a turtle named Sam and a giraffe named Jerry who (in the book) participated in my adventures for that day (whether it’d be swimming, traveling, or watching a famous endurance artist trap himself in an ice block).

Eventually the journal ended, but from there my creativity exploded and I experimented in acrylic, watercolor, photography, and sculpture including plaster, metal, and wire. I now primarily focus on both digital art and watercolor painting.

My small business, BehindTheBits, was formed in 2015 when I decided to sell my artwork online. I began with video game “fan art” as that video game obsession from my childhood stuck. The name “BehindTheBits” is also a play on my original style which showed a slightly darker yet comedic side of a video game the player may not see. I slowly worked my way towards “punny” art as I wanted to find my own style, something many people could possibly relate to and laugh about.

Please tell us about your art.
I currently focus on “punny” art as I love comedy and bad jokes. I used to say I “lived” for puns and say some pretty bad/lame ones on a daily basis. The work I do and the characters I create are very much an extension of myself. The greatest reward and why I do what I do is getting to watch and hear people laugh at my work, even if there’s no immediate revenue. I love putting a smile on someone’s face, even for a moment!

What do you think about conditions for artists today? Has life become easier or harder for artists in recent years? What can cities like ours do to encourage and help art and artists thrive?
As I’m very new to the scene in regards to selling my work, it’s hard for me to compare or put an accurate opinion on the conditions for artists today. I believe the city and even curators themselves are doing a wonderful job helping artists grow and become recognized. My feedback to other thriving artists is very cliche, but to never give up! You will crawl, believe me you will crawl. But then you will walk and quickly pick up the pace before you know it!

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
People can find my work online on Instagram (@behindthebits), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/behindthebits), and Pinterest (https://www.pinterest.com/behindthebits). I will be attending the Gilbert Art Walk 10/6, 11/24, 12/8, and 1/5. I will be a vendor at the Pinners Conference in Scottsdale, AZ 11/9 – 11/10.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Several images were taken myself, however other image credits go to Genesee Jay (https://www.facebook.com/geneseejay/)

Getting in touch: VoyagePhoenix is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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