Inspiration can come from the strangest of places. Heck, we took inspiration from the street signs and houses from Martha’s Vineyard for our first ties. For Jupiter, FL-based artist Carly Mejeur, inspiration came when she was given old nautical charts—lots and lots of them.
“When I was in art school, I mainly did portraits, figures, people—the usual stuff. When I came back home I realized that I really cared about the ocean, so I started painting more marine life. Unlike people, they don’t complain about what they look like!” she told us. “Then, my friend’s dad had all these nautical charts that he was trying to get rid of. I painted something on one of them and I realized how cool it is to connect what I’m painting with the chart. For me, the real fun is just to go with the flow and see what happens. It’s a really freeing experience.”
A Florida native, Carly has always been drawn to the ocean. When she started working the nautical charts into her art, it all clicked. “The art just seemed to make sense,” she said. “This is how I connect with marine life—on the charts there are all the natural landforms, and it shows how we separate everything with lines and bars and numbers. I try to make a connection between the rigidity of the numbers and the natural elements of the painting. It allows us to think about how we cohabitate with nature.”
“When I was painting before this series, what I loved about it was seeing my goals realized, having an image in my head and creating it. I’ve always enjoyed that part of it,” Carly told us. “But now it’s more about living in the moment—realizing that I haven’t taken a break for 6 hours because I’ve been painting and I’m really into it. The only other thing I’ve experienced like that is surfing. You’re so in tune with what’s going on when you’re out there, waiting for the wave. Painting on the chart is like that—everything is a surprise. I can sit down with a goal and something can happen in the midst of it. It’s kinda like life, ya know? It’s all about trying to balance what you’re doing and living in the moment. It’s nice to experience that as an artist.”
If you want to see some of Carly’s art, check out @carlymarineart on Instagram.