Art interview with Rita Loyd

Rita Loyd Art - Seeking Comfort

I’ve been an admirer of Rita Loyd’s art for quite some time. Her paintings healing messages touch me. She uses images of women which symbolically represent different aspects of all women’s lives and this really draws me in.

I love the whimsical imagery and color and I’m a big fan of symbolism so this is just my kind of art!

I put together some questions for Rita to learn more about her art and creative process. Read her artist interview below. And you can find some of my other artist interviews on my blog here>>

Artist Rita Loyd,
Rita Loyd

Rita, will you tell us a little bit about your journey to creating your art and being an artist?
I began painting my art in 1996 as a way to cope with chronic illness. I wanted to create art that was uplifting for me to look at and that would give me hope of recovery. I painted myself as I was or how I wished to be.

How long did it take you to develop your own style and when did you know this is what you wanted to do?
I developed my own style within a year I think of painting in my early 30’s. At first my painted women looked similar to an Asian artist’s style that I had admired. They were jeweled, tall and thin women. But then I decided to paint my women with a more realistic appearance and who were plainly dressed to put more emphasis on the message of the painting rather than on the details of what they were wearing.

I knew I wanted to create healing art from the first painting that I did in my early 30’s. I named this first painting Hearts Touching. It was while painting this image that a message came into my mind that said, “You will continue to paint and the art that you paint will help you and others to heal.”

Foundation of Inner Strength by Rita Loyd
Foundation of Inner Strength by Rita Loyd

What drives you to come up with ideas for your work, what are your sources of inspiration?
My art is my therapy. It helps me to look for my answers in life and to share the advice that helps me the most. Its also a reflection of my self-love journey and what I think can happen when we love ourselves.

Can you explain your creative process?
The way I decide on what to paint next is that I ask myself the question, “What’s bothering me?” And, then I reflect upon my spiritual studies and personal wisdom to find advice on how to best handle this problem. Next, I think of the symbolism I can use to get that message across and that is what I paint.

Do you throw much work away? Do you ever paint over a painting you aren’t happy with?
I recently threw a painting away because I painted another one that I thought conveyed its message more clearly. But then an on-line magazine wanted to share the one I threw away and it made me regret tossing it. Luckily they were able to use the image of it that I shared on Facebook a while back.

Other paintings I have thrown away were because they were not coming from my heart and from my deep authentic process. They were painted just to paint. So I didn’t have a heart connection with them.

Love Yourself Unconditionally by Rita Loyd
Love Yourself Unconditionally by Rita Loyd

What has been a turning point in your art career and why?
A huge turning point came years after I began painting. It was when I discovered that my art and creative process were teaching me how to unconditionally love myself. I had known that my art was healing and nurturing but I didn’t know what it was healing or what it was nurturing. Turns out it was nurturing self-love and healing self-hate.

Knowing what my art was about gave me direction in life and from there I wrote a book about self-love and my book is just about to sell out so I am working on its 2nd edition. This book is even being used in domestic violence centers to help survivors of abuse find self-love and I am very happy about that. My dream is to one day get my book into more domestic violence shelters and centers and it become the gold standard in teaching self-love to survivors.

How do you want someone to feel when he or she views your work?
I would love for people to walk away from my art having a deeper sense of how to connect with unconditional self love.

How important is the title of a painting to you and when and how do you title a piece?
My titles are very important because they convey the message of the painting. The title is based on the advice I am trying to convey. So I know the title or the basis of the title first.

When you feel self-criticism setting in or feel overwhelmed or unfocused, what do you do to get back on track?
When I feel unfocused or blocked I walk away from the drawing and rest. Sometimes taking a walk will help clear my head if I have the energy to take a walk. My inspiration comes in slowly and I can’t hurry the process. It might take months to visualize what I want to paint. I only paint about 3 paintings a year.

Fill in the blank: In the last five years, I’ve become better at __________.
Loving myself. Self-love is a gradual awakening and I am learning to take better care of myself.

You Are Bigger by Rita Loyd
You Are Bigger by Rita Loyd

If you could get a message out to millions or billions of people or even the entire world population — what would it say and why? 
Heal and empower your life through unconditional self-love. Believe in yourself and believe in what you have to offer. Now, more than ever, we need everyone to wake up to their abilities and to use their abilities to help save the planet and humanity.

What’s your current or next art project?
After I finish revising the 2nd edition of my unconditional self-love book I want to focus getting that book into more domestic violence centers.

I also want to create an interactive art exhibit teaching people how to nurture unconditional self-love. So I want to paint the main lessons that I teach about self-love. For example, one lesson is to slow down and take the time to listen to how you feel. So I have a painting to convey that message. Some messages are harder to paint than others and I am trying to visualize those concepts.

Anything else you want people to know about you?
My art and story will be in the mindfulness issue of Where Women Create Magazine in late November. It will not only feature my own art but some of the art from artists I have interviewed on my website. I can’t wait to see it!

Thank you Rita for sharing your journey with us!

I hope you all will visit Rita’s lovely website at


Pinterest for Artists

I think Pinterest is great for artists to share what inspires them.

At first I read a lot of articles about copyright issues with posting other peoples images but Pinterest has addressed most of these concerns so I recently started using it. If you like sharing and looking at beautiful or fun visual images, then you will like Pinterest.

I’ve always been a collector and had bulletin boards in my studio to pin things to that inspire me so now I can do this on my computer. And also search and find others with similar interests. My Pinterest page looks like the below image.

I read that one should use the 80/20 rule with Pinterest. Share 80% of mages from other peoples websites and 20% of your own stuff. So it’s not just for marketing your own artwork or business although it is okay to share that too. But share other fun things you enjoy and follow other peoples boards.

Some of my boards are titled Art by Artists I admire, Botanical, Feathered, Products I love, Birds, Travel, and then also my own L. Gruger Art in Progress and  L. Gruger Art. I’ll probably add more boards as I keep using it but I don’t want it to get too cluttered. So 8 boards is good for now.

Some ideas for artists using Pinterest might be boards about color palettes, art books you recommend, documentaries, art exhibits, galleries, art styles, design, print making or different art techniques. Also photos of what inspires you such as landscapes or still life or wild life. Here’s a good squidoo link about using Pinterest>

One of the important things to remember about pinning to your boards is to add the link where you found the image and give credit to the person who owns the image.

If you would like to add a Pinterest button to your blog or website, go to

Recently one of the ways I used Pinterest was to find a gift for someone. I had in my mind that I wanted to purchase something spiritual and beautiful for my friends birthday. I found this image below on Pinterest.

7 Chakras - Pyramid Pendulum / Suncatcher - Swarovski Crystals
7 Chakras - Pyramid Pendulum / Suncatcher - Swarovski Crystals by Windyscreations on Etsy

I tracked the item back to Windyscreations, a shop on, and purchased this beautiful item for my friend’s birthday. Turned out Windy and David, the artisans of Windy’s Creations, live in Sedona which is near Prescott where I live so I thought that was cool. My friend loved the present and I loved that Windy and David shipped the item so quickly and it was as beautiful in person as it was in the photo!

Share your Pinterest page here if you have one. I’d love to go see it.

Have fun.

You Are An Artist

A little reminder to be who you are and create the life you want!


You are one of a kind. You are an artist.
You dream in color. Your hands are busy.
You put your head in the clouds and breathe deeply.
You build tree houses and take naps in teepees.
You love animals, big and small.
Popsicles, dark chocolate and m & m’s
stir your imagination. A cup of mint tea
and one coffee creates a party for two.
You are an artist.
You make something out of nothing
and hang it on your wall. You love
silent nights and random stars. You lift your
hands to the music and let your feet
move as they will. There are wreaths on your
door and sparkling crystals hanging
in your window. You are an artist. You have
no room for popular opinion. You walk your own
path and climb your own mountains.
You sing at the top of your lungs.
You can be sad, happy and mad,
all at one time. You know that
this too will pass. You are an artist…

Can you continue my train of thought here?

By the way…

I’ll have more photos of our Southwest adventure in my next post.

Sparkling Snowflakes! Enjoy your day!

~ L ~