Get To Know The Artists

Get To Know The Artists

Sarah Cray - Nicole Miyuki - Jesse Petersen
Do you ever wish you could talk to your favorite artists more than just the occasional comments on one of our posts or live videos? Do you ever wonder more about who they are, their background, and how they got to where they are as artists today? Having a connection with someone makes all the difference!

Since we can't always be together in person, we thought this might be the next best thing to having a conversation together. Get to know watercolor artist Sarah Cray, hand lettering artist Nicole Miyuki, and art journaling artist Jesse Petersen.

We want to get to know you better too, so feel free to leave your own answers to these questions in the comments below!

Let's start with the basics - who are you?

headshot of watercolor artist sarah cray
I'm Sarah Cray and I love painting watercolor.
headshot of hand lettering artist Nicole Miyuki
My name is Nicole and I am the lettering artist here at Let’s Make Art.

headshot of art journaling artist Jesse Petersen
I’m Jesse Petersen and I’m an artist with a passion for Art Journaling.

How long have you been doing art?

photo of Sarah Cray
Since I can remember. Art was always something I enjoyed doing and I think that is almost universal for young children. I simply didn’t stop as I got older.
photo of Nicole Miyuki Santo
I first started doing art as an elective in middle school, however, I played sports my whole life. So as a kid I played sports more than I was an artist!
photo of Jesse Petersen
I've been doing art for as long as I can remember. My parents tried really hard to discourage me from making art my career, but I’ve always been a rebel.

What is your favorite part about working in your desired art medium?

photo of watercolor artist
My favorite part about working in watercolor is two fold: the simplicity and the element of surprise. I love that for cleaning up I just need to rinse my brushes (I cannot tell you how many brushes I have ruined in acrylic and oil because I didn't clean them correctly or fast enough), and when it comes to blooms, textures, color changes, all of these AMAZING things that watercolor can do on its own for us - I simply cannot contain my delight or excitement.
photo of hand lettering artist
It’s a way to express yourself. When you can give someone something that you made, the feeling and warmth they feel from receiving it is my favorite part.
photo of art journaling artist
It fills me, it heals me, it gives me language to say things in ways that I don’t have words for and I love that. I also love sharing what I know and encouraging others to create.

Has art changed your life in a significant way? How so?

photo of Sarah Cray watercolor artist
Art has taught me many, many things, but I think one element that sticks out to me the most is I have learned how to receive feedback and criticism. When it comes to art school, most of the time you create a project that (hopefully) you are proud of and then you present it to your teacher and your peers and they give you advice on how to improve. In order for this to be effective, you have to set your ego aside and understand that this is done in the spirit of improvement. I have found this to be extremely useful in day to day life and I am grateful for those experiences.
photo of Nicole Santo hand lettering artist
100 percent. It has given a voice to a girl that was shy her whole life.
photo of Jesse Petersen art journaling artist
Absolutely. Art has always been important for my anxiety. It helps me recover and work through my problems and gives me new perspectives. I’m no stranger to hard times - Hurricane Katrina took everything I had, and now I am able to realize how important it is to capture the things you want to remember and how they made you feel. Art is a way to slow down and acknowledge time passing as it’s happening.

What's a fun fact people might not know about you?

headshot of Sarah
I have never liked or chewed gum and the smell of bubble gum makes me nauseous.
headshot of Nicole
Hmm... I played soccer in college. Oh! Miyuki is my middle name and I feel like a lot of people don't know that about me. My last name is actually Santo, but I didn't want to have an art brand that I can't use when I get married. (No marital plans presently, but a girl has to think ahead!) I also like that my middle name lets people know I'm Japanese.
headshot of Jesse
My first job was at a grocery store called Piggly Wiggly in Escatawpa, MS. I just think it's such a funny name!

Now it's your turn!

Let us know your favorite kind of art, how it may have changed your life, or a fun fact about yourself in the comments!
STAY IN TOUCH WITH SARAH
STAY IN TOUCH WITH NICOLE
STAY IN TOUCH WITH JESSE
photo of Jesse, Sarah, and Nicole smiling together with text that says "Get to know the artists, Q&A with Jesse, Sarah, and Nicole"

42 comments


  • Annette L Freid

    I love following Sarah’s tutorials! I’ve been hesitant to take on any lettering or journaling, but I think I may have time ove the next few months. ;0)


  • Connie Mort

    I love love love you guys!! I didn’t know I could draw or paint but I am having a great time exploring my new" talent". I enjoy the teaching style and knowledge you bring to everyone in the room and on utube. I also enjoy the companionship and positive comments from you girls which are inspirational for everyone who watch your tutorials. Your laughter lifts my spirits.


  • Melissa Walls

    Learning art at 60 has been such a lifesaver for me. When I paint I don’t hurt. Everything is focused on paper, brush, and color for a moment in time. I started with oil, did a little acrylic and then discovered the ease and wonder of watercolor. Thank you for access to the videos and outlines. Such a blessing. God bless you ladies. You are loved by so many. Tomorrow is my 61st birthday and my 1 year mark for this beautiful art journey. How sweet of God to bless me in my golden years with a gift.


  • Dianne

    I love watching the show. I have mostly watched Sarah and I love her personality and the interaction with everyone on the set especially the cameraman!


  • Mike Sackmary

    I love all three of you. Sarah is the most amazing art teacher, because she teaches us how to see colors and waterflow and blooms and all this other way cool stuff. I love Sarah’s silliness, especially when she’s talking to Keenan. Nicole taught me how to letter without making a big smeared left-hander’s mess. Plus Nicole has the biggest smile on the planet. Jesse, I love your hair colors and your journaling tutorials. All y’all are great!


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