Behind the Texture
with Topher & Sara Mack
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Husband and wife duo, Topher & Sara Mack, are the Artists & Owners of Artist Couple, LLC. They are both graduates from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design with a BFA in Photography & Printmaking respectively. In 2015 they started their business, Artist Couple, LLC in Austin, TX, specializing in murals and specialty finishes. Together they create custom spaces and artwork to individuals and businesses in Central Texas and beyond.
Where do you live and what’s your favorite part about your town/city?
Our studio/homestead is nestled deep in the Hill Country, in the lovely town of Oatmeal, Texas (yes, like the breakfast)! We love the solitude and beauty of undisturbed nature out here, especially in the Springtime when all of the wild flowers are blooming. It’s peaceful and full of nature, which we feel really helps our creativity flourish. It is close enough to the city where we can regularly enjoy the “city life” if we want to, but far enough away so we can slow down, unplug and enjoy the silence. It’s a good balance of nature and convenience for both work and play.
How would you describe your artistic styles?
We both have very different styles and strengths when it comes to our work. Topher has a loose, impressionistic and abstract style, while I, (Sara), have a more technical, clean and realistic style. We both love to challenge ourselves to create new looks and work in different styles. This sometimes makes our work seem like it comes from an entire team of artists instead of just us. Neither of us likes to do the same thing for too long, so we mix it up with different techniques and projects regularly. We are fortunate to have two different styles that work well together and can complement each other as artists.
What is your favorite thing about the decorative industry/community?
The creativity! It’s wonderful to get to work in an industry where you have the flexibility to experiment and try something new or weird, as well as perfect traditional methods and techniques. It’s amazing how others can inspire so much drive and motivation for our work and new ideas. Seeing what other creatives in the industry are doing, and chatting with them about their projects, always seems to spark inspiration for future projects and ideas.
What’s something you wish you could tell your younger selves?
That’s a tough question, because we can’t think of much we would want to change in our lives or things we regret … All of our failures and successes have made our knowledge, relationships and business what it is today and we are very happy with our life and work. I suppose we would tell our younger selves to keep on being who we are, true to ourselves and our values. Keep pursuing our passions and have patience; trust that life always works itself out if you keep pushing forward and continue to be the best version of yourself.
If you had to choose a different career, what would it be?
We both love exploring new places and cultures, so we probably would want to do something that involves backpacking, traveling and trying out different cuisines and ways of living. We would enjoy a job that involved sharing the stories of people and places around the world and immersing ourselves in new cultures. We would happily take an Anthony Bourdain or Rick Steves type job in a heartbeat!
If you could be any animal in the world, what animal would you be and why?
I, (Sara), have always thought flying would be magical. Gliding above the tree tops and through mountains and valleys sounds like a wonderful way to spend my days, so I think being some type of bird like an eagle or hawk would be nice. I think I would miss having arms and opposable thumbs, but wings would be a great alternative.
Topher says he’d probably be an Octopus, because they are smart and have cool camouflage. Plus, they have their own jet propulsion system as a means of getting around and who wouldn’t want that?
See more of Topher and Sara’s work here.
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