Inland Empire resident Mia Bruce uses every emotion and moment to paint an uncensored representation of life. Bruce has used the canvas as a therapeutic tool throughout her life. Vibrant colors, biological figures and emotions are the main focal points that help each piece stand out. Bruce uses multiple medical books as a template for her human body sketches. Her toolkit has a mixed media base and uses every art utensil in the book. The color palette of most of her paintings consists of flesh-colored pink, blood red and mellow yellow. Her aesthetic embodies the tug-of-war between body and spirit. Ultimately, Bruce employs tools of abstractionism and expression to capture a raw glimpse of her very own soul.

Bruce explores how her heart reacts to human love vs. God’s love in her art. Her piece “Scarce Room to Spare” showcases the key differences in love. In Bruce’s eyes, human love could be unreliable as it changes with time. On the other hand, God’s love is everlasting, serving as an eternal shoulder to cry on. The painting runs on an abstract engine with bursts of bright pink, golden yellow and dark ocean blue. The top of “Scarce Room to Spare” spotlights two people face-to-face, staring into each other’s souls. The two figures imitate the blossoming early stages of a romantic relationship. Towards the left, a lone embryo seeks shelter underneath a human head, representing the individual in their most vulnerable state. At times, being vulnerable with another person could be extremely unsettling. Nonetheless, vulnerability brings you closer to your partner. Bruce seeks long-lasting peace from love.

A piece aptly titled “Because of Your Light” uses a mosaic filter to paint a picture of the inner chaos that resides in our society. She used three tracing papers and various
drawing tools to bring her vision to life. The red, blue and green mosaic pattern personifies the rigged anatomy of reality. This pattern of madness is split open by a bright yellow path. The golden road physically represents God and Bruce’s sense of spirituality. Reality is an unstable mess that’s difficult to operate. Nonetheless, God’s “light” will always guide you in the right direction. This idea is illustrated by an illuminated yellow walkway home to a lone individual moving directly toward the chaos.

“Frustrating not to be satisfied” visualizes the complexities of the human condition. The piece shows that humans are never delighted with simplicity. They’re always on the move, looking for something bigger than themselves. The left-hand side of the painting houses an anatomical drawing of an eyeball. The eye symbolizes an individual’s desire to find meaning in unexplained phenomena. Hordes of red, pink and blue-colored muscle linings surround the eye. The impression of human muscle was accomplished using a flare technique with pencils and paintbrushes. Furthermore, the muscle groups represent the inner strength of an individual. Bruce hopes people can gain strength to find happiness in simplicity with this piece.

God’s divine inspiration fuels Bruce’s approach to art. Each piece represents a fragment of emotion experienced by her. A collection of the Inland Empire artist’s most recent works fills the magazine “Under Whose Timing.” People could message Bruce on Instagram to gain access to the zine. The publication features the hand-drawn pictures mentioned above and many more. The portraits are accompanied by poetic commentary that additionally empowers the painting.

“Under Whose Timing” encompasses the past year experienced by Bruce. She has produced numerous magazines over time. Each magazine represents a specific time period in her life. The pictures are extremely personal because they come from the inner depths of the artist’s soul. Each illustration tells a story that could help the viewer find meaning in their own lives.

The title of “Under Whose Timing” refers to the challenges that arise from imposing a specific timeline on your life. You cannot plan for every moment life has to offer. Life is unpredictable as circumstances constantly change. Bruce’s art helps people trartust in the uncertainty and go with the flow of life’s ever-evolving stages.

To see more of Mia Bruce’s works, her Instagram is @mbbworkz.