We had the good fortune of connecting with Jenny Goring and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jenny, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
Visual Art is my tool for communicating my values and priorities, uplifting other people, and easing the pain of daily life. I am working on a series of “Portraits of Inner Beauty” which shift the focus away from socially imposed criteria for physical beauty and onto the things which are really important—such as our strength of character, our kindness, our ingenuity and so on. This project is in its earliest stages, and subject to evolve. At this time, I envision conversations/interviews with a great many people across a wide spectrum resulting in a gallery show of portraits in my signature style of Collage-Painting, enhanced by audio of the subjects explaining their story in their own words. The purpose is to invite viewers to see the positive aspects of my subjects which they may have overlooked. Our society is so divided today, and it is so easy for all of us—including me—to judge someone based only on one little thing about them. I’m hoping to lift up the positive aspects of many different kinds of people, making it more difficult for us to view them as the “other” and to help us start thinking about how we are all integral parts of Humankind. I will be launching the interview phase on my website soon. Everyone is welcome to contribute!
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My mixed media collage paintings delve beneath the surface appearance of my subjects to showcase the layered biographies and experiences at work within each of us. Composed of oil paint and repurposed magazines, vintage photos and maps, art paper and botanical illustrations, the images I construct are both straightforward and complex. The making of my art, like the subject it hopes to capture, is a work in progress—constantly evolving to invoke greater meanings, incorporate more perspectives, and convey narratives about what it means to be human. As I approach my 50th birthday I am developing a larger project to expand myself, personally and professionally. It is sort of a mid-life check-in. I am hoping to participate in one or more Artist Residency programs, and I plan to spend some time in Spain next year. I was born there while my dad was in the Navy. My family returned to Pennsylvania when I was only three, so I don’t remember anything about it. I believe that going back and seeing where I was born will fill in some gaps in my psyche. I am working to align my actions with my values and use my artistic communication skills to change hearts and minds, to foster empathy and healing. I believe that taking a little time to learn more about myself is an important next step. Being an Artist is never easy. I’m not sure I would want it to be. I have to do a lot of different kinds of artwork to make ends meet. I freelance for clients and I am working with an agent to prepare a portfolio for licensing. Artists generally don’t become artists to make money. I measure my success by the reactions I get from people. If I feel that the message gets through to someone and makes their day a little brighter, I have succeeded.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
So fun! I LOVE when friends and family come to visit, and I always wish it would happen more often. STARTING HYPER-LOCAL: Most of my visitors have been friends my age. It is so fun to take them to some of the many amazing Craft Breweries! I’m sure people hear all sorts of recommendations in the city, so I’ll tell you about the ones near me in the suburbs… Wonderland Brewing is in Broomfield, CO. They have great beers, amazing burgers with the coolest swirly fries, and a huge yard full of down-to-earth fun! Prior to Covid they had a very large area with Ping-Pong tables and 1980’s-style stand-up video arcade games. I’m pretty sure those will be available again when it’s safe to play so close together. Over the past year or so they have expanded their outdoor area to double or triple its size, added a huge firepit area and a Mini Golf Course. Four Noses Brewing Company, Westminster Brewing Company, Kokopeli Brewing Company and other make this part of town extra fun. There are so many businesses, conference centers, tech companies, etc., in this area that we are getting more and more hotel guests, and there is plenty for them to do. It may not be downtown, but it is pretty darned fun! AND FOR VACATIONERS: Oh my goodness! A week in Colorado?! Everyone should be so lucky! In the summer one of our favorite things to do with friends is go to Film on the Rocks at Red Rocks Amphitheater. Unlike movies in the theater, the audience is encouraged to play along, yell out the lines, dance in the aisles. It’s a super fun night in a natural wonder overlooking the city lights. Something for everyone. Road tripping through the little mountain towns is time well spent! Drop a few quarters in the slot machines in Central City, buy rocks and geodes in Georgetown, get lunch on the lake in Dillon. Ski towns are equally inviting in the summer. Breckenridge, Crested Butte and Steamboat each have their own local flavor, and if you time it right, the wildflowers are incredible! You must go to the historic natural hot springs pool in Glenwood Springs! While you are in town, ride the gondola up to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park and get a ticket to hike up to Hanging Lake. Head out to Southwest Colorado to visit wine country or get some Palisade Peaches! If you have time, visit Mesa Verde’s archaeological sites. You can’t possibly do it all in one week. I made Colorado my home nearly 22 years ago, and I still haven’t seen it all. There is so much to do and so much beauty you will never want to leave.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
JOHN FRENZL: My husband is, hands down, my #1 supporter! John Frenzl is a Graphic Designer who works for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, CO. He has always been drawn to design and he is incredibly talented at visually communicating complex scientific information to non-scientists. The work he does at NREL goes directly to Washington, DC to inform policy makers about alternative energy solutions; incredibly important work that speaks to the very core of my value system. And by some miracle, he is able to understand me, see my talents, interpret my true intentions and set me up to succeed. I have never had another friend or family member as suited to me as my husband! He has supported me financially and emotionally all these years, helping me return to college to get my art degree, allowing me to follow my dreams and helping keep my spirits high as I pursue this challenging, unconventional lifestyle. He’s my superhero! FACULTY OF MSUD COMMUNICATION DESIGN DEPT: Returning to college to finally get that art degree (at age 40) looked a little different than I had imagined. Because my husband had always used artistic skills in a traditional work setting, he knew that learning to design would mean I could earn money. So it was the perfect cross-section of the life I dreamed of and our reality as a middle-class couple. Luckily, we made the best possible decision about the program I would study in. I received my Bachelor of Fine Arts with a concentration in Communication Design from Metropolitan State University of Denver (in 2012). I cannot stress how strongly I believe in this program! The faculty had the vision to see what design could be far down the road. My professors pushed me in all sorts of ways – even when I pushed back! I learned to use my skills with purpose! Lisa Abendroth, Peter Miles Bergman and Kelly Monico were the permanent faculty. They taught me so many skills I use not only in my freelance design work, but—more meaningfully to me personally—skills I use to improve the value of my personal artwork. I learned to do research about other people so that I can do a better job of communicating to them in a meaningful way. The research- and interpersonal-skills I learned at Metro have improved my relationships, professionally and personally (I still make mistakes, but I now recognize them and have tools to improve). I am using the research skills they taught me to do a better and better job of creating artwork that reaches people’s hearts and inspires them to think about how they can be their best selves, and how to see the best in others. CREATIVE CIRCLE: I do make money here and there through freelance graphic design gigs. I get a ton of support from my agency, Creative Circle, and my rep Vanessa Davisson in particular! I cannot thank them enough for providing opportunities for me to pay the bills, without being tied to a continual 9-5 lifestyle!