Voices

Spokane good fit for artist to ply her craft

Artist Linda Malcom flips through her sketchbook in her home studio on Wednesday, in Spokane. Malcom will participate in the upcoming Town and Country Studio Tour. She makes her own rubber stamps and her art incorporates stamping, collage, and hand-drawn accents. (Tyler Tjomsland)
Artist Linda Malcom flips through her sketchbook in her home studio on Wednesday, in Spokane. Malcom will participate in the upcoming Town and Country Studio Tour. She makes her own rubber stamps and her art incorporates stamping, collage, and hand-drawn accents. (Tyler Tjomsland)

Linda Malcom is a historian of sorts – a memory keeper who fills journals with a mix of words and images that are more universal than they are personal.

Page after page is filled with motivational and inspirational quotes seemingly being spoken by whimsical and magical figures – human, animals or a mix of both. They are finely crafted doodles; a habit that Malcom mastered through years of practice and study, fueled by an innate desire to express herself creatively.

“One of my earliest recollections is of sitting in the window of my home and painting watercolors,” she said. “I think I have always been, and will always be, an artist. It isn’t something that one just gets up and decides to become. It is a lifetime of observation and study, and learning the skills to express one’s self.”

Malcom was the child of a military man and she grew up in many places. Her father died when she was 9 when his plane blew up in Langley, Va., and she quickly learned that sorrow is palpable. Always doodling, she gave her emotions wings, as visually stunning and relevant representations in an array of mediums. They became her diaries that were more like eulogies to the emotions that are universally experienced.

“It is the creation of the art that drives me; once it is complete, the impetus is gone, and I move onto my next creative adventure,” she said. “When I am focused on the creation of art, I am taken away to another place that separates me from my mundane existence.”

Malcom has always loved learning. She earned bachelor’s degrees in art history and engineering from Fresno State University and a master’s in primitive art history from the University of California, Davis. For about 10 years, she worked as an engineer for a GPS company in Silicon Valley. During that time, she began a rubber stamp business as a means to express herself. Her stamps are not your average rubber stamps; they are esoteric and sophisticated. “I don’t make ‘cute’ stamps,” she said.

After the GPS company was purchased by a French corporation, she knew there would be layoffs. She began looking online for real estate and Spokane kept popping up. She moved to the area six years ago and ramped up her stamp business. Her artwork is engraved on magnesium plates, which are then pressed onto green board matrix, and then rubber before they are put in the vulcanizer in her garage.

Malcom and her stamps travel all over the U.S. and Europe. Locally, she has shown her mixed media art, including pages from her journals affixed to panels at dozens of festivals and venues.

Currently, you can see her creations at Manic Moon and More, 1007 W. Augusta Ave., and during the upcoming Town and Country Studio Tour on Sept. 14 and 15. Malcom will be at Studio 6, 1717 E. 38th Ave. For more information on Linda Malcom, visit www.lost-coast- designs.com.

The Verve is a weekly feature celebrating the arts. If you know an artist,contact Jennifer LaRue at jlarue99@hotmail.com.


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