During this holiday season, home and family are topics of the utmost importance and a local artist brings that theme to her artwork which makes great gifts for Christmas. “I’m an illustrator,” says Pam Bailey. The talented artist creates intricate original illustrations and then burns the designs into various items, primarily made of natural wood and leather. Bailey is also a member of Flint Handmade, a nonprofit organization that encourages creative expression and artistic entrepreneurship in metro Flint.
“People are finding their connection to peace and that sense of peace comes through in my work.”
Bailey’s artistic style is called zendoodling, which she describes as “a meditative way of drawing” adding, “you just let your artistic talent take over.” She often draws whimsical animals, filling in their shapes with a variety of patterns. She also teaches zendoodle classes. “It’s just a beautiful process and very relaxing,” she says. “I do it for my own mental health and other people find it to be healing, as well.”
Bailey works at the Flint YMCA in fundraising and public relations. Born and raised in Flint, she grew up on the south side. A Flint Central High School grad, she attended Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in photography and sculpture. She received her Master’s Degree from Savannah College of Art & Design in Savannah, GA. When she returned home, Bailey was excited to see the resurgence of the arts in the area. “I came back to Flint,” she says. “It is where my family is and this is home. I love this city, even the ugly parts. There are scars, but I see the beauty in them.”
Initially, Bailey’s artwork was a hobby she enjoyed after a busy day working in the nonprofit world. “I wanted to reconnect with my artistic side,” she remembers. Then, it turned into a business as many people connected with her work. Her pieces can be purchased through Etsy and at craft shows. She also does commission pieces and custom work. “People connect with my illustrations,” she shares. Just recently, Bailey started working with leather, making purses, bags and wallets stamped with her illustrations. She admits to learning the craft through trial and error, and by watching many YouTube videos.
Many people love Bailey’s artwork because it is so distinctive and different. She is busily preparing for the holiday season making Christmas gifts such as custom-made welcome signs for homes, home decor, jewelry, whimsical animals, wooden ornaments and much more. Her coloring sheets and coloring books are also very popular.
Bailey feels that as people are spending more time at home, they are celebrating the importance of home, family and want more peace in their lives. “People are finding their connection to peace and that sense of peace comes through in my work.”
For more information about Pam Bailey’s artwork, visit phbailey.com. Photos provided by Pam Bailey