The most important thing in life for me is to be happy. Truly happy, experiencing inner happiness on a regular basis and with painting, being creative in all kind of areas, and being my true self, I can proudly say I’ve reached that place. One of my most proudest achievements in life. Hay, my name is Poppy, last name is Koning, born and raised in the Netherlands where I am still based, my birthday is April 20th. A day in the Netherlands we love, haha.
Speaking about the Netherlands, Dutch is my first language which makes English the second language I am fluent in. All thanks to the NFL because I am a huge supporter of the Green Bay Packers since 2011, my favorite color is a fresh turquoise, my favorite snack is salted popcorn, I meditate multiple times a day, I only read self help + self development books and I do read daily. I am daily working on self improvement for me, I love to spend time in nature, I admire as many sunsets as I can and I am a professional when it comes to finding lucky clovers even with 5 leafs. And yes, I also have one with 6 leafs!
Painting with my own blood wasn’t my intention at all but when I started to paint with more reds, I got many suggestions to give it a try with my own blood because my paintings looked like crime scenes. They still do. Anyway, I brushed it off until one day I got aware of the sign. Was this meant to be? Was this my mission? I gave it a try after doing tons of research + my knowledge from my diploma in the medical field and extracted blood from my vein, kept it in the fridge for weeks until I was ready and painted with it, absolutely loved it and my very first human blood painting ‘Guts Over Fear’ was born.
Let’s talk human blood paintings..
When I talk about my ‘human blood paintings’ I am indeed talking about my paintings that contain human material. My own human material. Yes, I paint with my own blood, and my blood only. This is very limited edition which makes it extremely exclusive, that’s the reason why I decided to not make more human blood paintings than my age.
I can hear your question loud and clear, ‘why paint with blood?‘ Like I already said, it wasn’t my idea nor my intention but the more the comments + suggestions showed up, I got intrigued and before I know it I fell down this amazing rabbit hole and well, here we are! Painting with my blood and selling it, haha!
Does the future hold more of my human blood paintings? Yes. But like I said, it’s very limited and exclusive and if you desire one, get your hands on it as soon as possible the moment I launch one. I won’t make them often nor can I due to the amount of blood they require and to be honest, I don’t want that. The human blood paintings are so special to me, I like to keep them that way.
For more information about this subject check my FAQ about my human blood paintings.
Blood always fascinated me. The sensual color, the richness of the color, the variety of shades it can come in, I admire the texture, the effects it can create but for me, blood stands for passion. Enjoyment. Sensuality. Expression. Loving life. Aliveness. That’s why I made the choice to follow my heart after dipping my toes in the bloody waters for some time and diving in completely by going full inspired blood paintings only. The best choice I’ve made in my art career, besides starting, haha!
It was such a liberating moment yet also scary due to the unknown territory but then again, showing up as my true self, owning my blood passion, being happy and free from the opinions of others, nothing and nobody can beat that. That’s what I stand for when it comes to my art, being yourself, loving who you are, investing in yourself, investing in your dreams, investing in what you desire in life and making it come to fruition. Follow your heart, only you know what’s best for you, follow your path and do what you want and desire.
Let’s talk, the question I get a lot..
..how did I got into painting? I don’t want to go over the whole story completely because I keep my focus on what I want and in the present moment nowadays but back in 2016 I got Lyme disease after being sick for months followed by a pretty severe burnout that came with crippling anxiety which kept me down for years. I was so fed up with feeling sick, frustrated for not getting better and not getting the help + therapy I needed and deeply ashamed for hitting a burnout in my early 20’s.
In 2017 I hit rock bottom, I felt stuck, not heard, misunderstood and I needed a way to cope with my situation and a way to escape it. Somehow I picked up my paint brushes and I poured my entire heart out onto a canvas and I felt at ease since a long time. It was short lived but it was good enough to see where this was going after being in such a suffocating situation. The more I did it, the more relief I experienced, the more liberating I felt which resulted in me putting my makeup brushes down and quitting all of my jobs in 2018 to follow my dream as a successful full time artist.
In 2019 I launched my first collection called ‘REDRUM‘ which was actually not planned, the idea came to mind and the intention was to burn all the bridges from the past but also the image people held of me. I wanted a clean slate, I wanted to be recognized as an artist and nothing else, so this was an option that appealed to me. Not knowing that years later this collection was preparing me for who I am now. It helped me heal, I opened up with this collection about mental health issues, I shared my journey to who I am now and I still do that.
I’ve made such an internal transformation from 2019 to 2022, I don’t even recognize the person I was back then and I am thankful it all happened because it brought me to where I wanted and needed to be. I discovered my purpose in life. I discovered my inner power. I discovered myself. I remember looking at my human blood painting ‘Guts Over Fear’ when it was still on my walls, thinking about the hell I went through but nowadays I remember the painting in awe. I feel so proud. I feel empowered. I feel strong. I feel so much appreciation! I am beyond thankful for the journey I went on even though the beginning was rocky, it was all worth it.
Due to the change in my consciousness I decided to drop my debut collection from 2018 called ‘I am at war with myself’ which was suppose to launch after my pre-collection called REDRUM and introduce you to the darker part of my life but now, that dark part is gone. I canceled my official debut collection, I remodeled it with the pieces I already made back then and launched it in a newer way called ‘I was at war with myself’ where I reflected back on things and focus on how much it brought me to where I am now.
It was the greatest awakening, it opened my eyes, it set this fire inside of me on HIGH, I came to the knowledge that all the information or things I was asking for were on the inside, not outside. Years went by until I realized it’s me that carries this power, the power is within me, so I used and still use it to my benefit. Now I paint from my source within, with exhilaration, blissfulness, happiness, light and love but still based on my feelings and life experiences. And yes, sometimes I experience contrast, I notice a wobble, but that’s part of life and from those situations new desires are born.
I am extravagant. I am passionate. I am extremely creative. I am also very bubbly. What can I say? This is me. I am thankful for where I am at in life and I am eager to where I am headed!
Thank you for reading.