September 02, 2009

Crafty Synergy is back!

Hello again! I'm back to continue spreading the word about more amazing artists. In an effort to be efficient, I've decided that I will continue to post the interviews on my A Little Hut blog each Thursday. Each post will be tagged with Crafty Synergy so they will be easy to find.

I hope that you continue to visit and enjoy the new interviews that will be forthcoming. Thank you so much!

Follow all Crafty Synergy interviews here
.

May 28, 2009

Apt. 3305



Artist: Lisa Chow
Location: Houston, Texas
Web sites: www.apt3305.com, www.lisachow.etsy.com
Blog: www.apt3305.blogspot.com



What do you create?
Drawings and illustrations. Even though I offer ceramics, glassware, and sculptural pieces; everything I do begins with and encompasses a drawing.

How did you come up with your business name?
When coming up with a business name, I wanted something clever and memorable and unique and....perfect. I tested out a dozen potential names among my friends (many were outright rejected and/or ridiculed) and it soon felt overwhelming. But I took some time to reflect what I wanted my business to mean to me. I wanted a business name that would remind me of this time in my life when I’m young, living in the city, and when possibilities seem endless. So I named it after my current home. I often get asked if Apt. 3305 is really my apartment number...and yes, yes it is.



When and why did you decide to start your business?
I always knew I wanted to open my own business but for the longest time I could not figure out what my business would be. I threw around ideas ranging from accessories boutique to florist to bakery. Selling my own art never occurred to me because I had long had the notion engrained into my head that you cannot making a living from art. But after a bit of pondering, I decided to take the plunge and throw my art out there. I’m not making a living...but I love what I do.

Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?
I create what I like. I happen to like big cities, rich desserts, furry animals, and fairy tales. Plus, I have a very active imagination.

Which of the tools you use is your favorite?
It’s a tie. My eraser because it erases my mistakes. My pen because it forces me to make my mistakes work.



You work in different mediums: Which one is your favorite or the one you couldn’t live without?
I have to draw. I could not live without a pad of bristol paper, art pens, and one good 2B pencil.

What would be a dream project that you’d love to work on?
I would love to write and illustrate a series of children’s books. I am really excited about a series of illustrations I'm currently working on.

What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?
From my own experience: If you bounce an idea off someone and they think you are utterly cracked out of your mind...that’s when you know you’re onto something.



What’s the most important thing you’d like people to know/understand about your work?
I don’t have any formal art training or education. Everything I do is self-taught through research, trial and error, and studying others. I might not always use proper techniques or correct methods but I do what I do and hope for the best.

What have you learned about yourself through your work?
I always knew I had an active imagination but sometimes even I surprise myself.



If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?
There are so many things I’d love to learn: cake decorating, sewing, knitting, floral arranging, metalsmithing...the list goes on. But I would most love to learn to sew. It's just practical.

What’s your definition of a perfect day?
Shopping and eating in NYC or Barcelona.

April 14, 2009

Inklore



Artist: Sam Hirst
Location: Northern CA
Web sites: Inklore Design, Inklore
Blog: http://www.inklore.blogspot.com

What do you create?
I create a line of block printed/stenciled housewares and accessories for you, your home, and for little ones.

How did you come up with your business name?
My husband and I were brainstorming all the words we could think of that had to do with printmaking and came up with ink(almost everything I make has a bit of ink on it) and lore (I still think we came up with this to represent the "traditional" technique I use but he says it was for the "story" behind the items) ink+lore= inklore



When and why did you decide to start your business?
I stumbled on an article about Galbraith and Paul a few years ago and was intrigued by the art form of block printing, so I went out and bought a beginner's set of materials and used them to make my own Christmas cards. Over the next few years I started reading some design/craft blogs and really wanted to find more time for making things, but my children were small and I was working part-time from home. When my part-time job went away and my kids were finally a bit older, I decided to support my new passion for block printing by starting a business. I still get giddy when Inklore buys the supplies for a new project.

Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?
Most of my ideas come from my own backyard. Many of my prints are from plants in my own yard or things I use everyday in my home. I really try to create items that are functional or practical, so many times an idea comes from a need for something in my own home. Right now I'm working on a new product that was inspired by one of my daughter's drawings. I've turned her drawing into a print which will be on a new item for Inklore kids very soon.



Which of the tools you use is your favorite?
Definitely my carving tools, though toothpicks are a close second.

What part of your process do you enjoy the most?
My favorite part of the process is carving a new print and then printing it for the first time. Watching a print come to life still amazes me.

What would be a dream project that you’d love to work on?
I would love to have the space to block print lengths of fabric. My first inspiration, Galbraith and Paul still inspires me.

What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?
I think you really have to have a passion for what you're doing, and a lasting passion. And then, don't be afraid to tell people about what you're doing. Not everyone will love it, but someone will!



What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your work?
I would love for people to know just how hands-on it really is. The carving of a new print is slow, methodical, almost meditative, but printing is physical, sometimes exhausting. The artist literally touches every bit of what you see when you see a block print.

What have you learned about yourself through your work?
As I was growing up, my mom always told me that I was artistic, and I always argued with her. Since starting Inklore, I've had to admit that she was right, and I find that my well of creativity is deep enough to keep going...



If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?
I don't have the time, but I'm still going to learn how to screen print. Sometimes my ideas are too big for block printing, at least in the space I have, so I need to learn screen printing to get those ideas out.

What is your go-to snack?
Chocolate, only dark chocolate, and peanuts (but no peanut butter, please)


Thank you Sam!

March 12, 2009

Little Alouette



Artist: Amy Turn Sharp
Location: Ohio, USA

Web sites: Littlealouette.etsy.com , Little Alouette
Blog:
Doobleh-vay

What do you create?
Wood rattles, teethers, and toys.

How did you come up with your business name?

My good friend gave me the name!!! I am married to a Brit- but I am a bit of a francophile :)




When and why did you decide to start your business?

My husband (classically trained master carpenter) and I started making toys for our son Finn when he was a baby and then after a lot of issues with recalls and a new baby in the teething stages we decided to make our own maple rattles and teethers and soon friends and family loved them and we started an etsy shop.

(this is on our site- Over a decade ago a handsome British boy and an Ohio lass met and fell madly in love at first site in a sleepy university town. The boy was a classically trained master carpenter and the girl a writer with a bit of wanderlust. They worked together creatively through the years on many projects involving woodworking as they restored and remodeled homes together. The boy taught his love about trees on their land in the country and how to use power tools and the girl read poems to him while they worked. They started a journey of following their bliss and eventually brought two wee ones into the world and began creating wooden toys for them. They decided to share these wee wooden toys with the world and Little Alouette, LLC was born over hot steaming mugs of cocoa in the winter of 2007.)



Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?

Our two boys! (Finn age 4 and Blaise age 2) They are our inspiration and drive! They test everything! And our customers!!! They give us great ideas in the form of custom work!
Which of the tools you use is your favorite? Joe uses the big boy tools really. I use the sanding table sometimes, but really I like the sandpaper in hand feel of working with wood. I also like going out to the local farm where we source our wood and watch Joe plane the wood. I find such pleasure in the art of wood working. I love how old school it can be- me and the boys in the pick up truck out in the country on the way to the farm!



What would be a dream project that you’d love to work on?
I would love to start making furniture with Joseph. He had bespoken furniture workshop in the north of England about ten years ago and he is so talented. I would love to make affordable modern pieces for the wee ones. I love modern design but really am unable to afford most of it- I know there are others like me who would love options! There are also some collaborations to come in 2009 with cool peeps that I am excited about- The blogosphere has been so amazing and I have connected with so many lovely people!!!


What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?

Be flexible.
Be open.

Learn to market yourself.
Give and connect!

Be not afraid. Nothing from nothing ever came.

I am of the "go for it" group. I left my wonderful career in shaky economic times to write a novel and become a toy maker and people thought I must have lost my mind- but my family is doing great. We are living frugally, but we are living very happy and have spent more time together in the last 16 months than ever before! We eat dinner together around a table each and every night. This did not happen when I worked outside the home. This is a big deal.




What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your work?

We create each piece with our hands and love is in each one.
We want people to know that they have options in the way of baby toys. Simple is often best. Wood is good!

What 3-4 words would like to be associated with your work?

handmade/heirloom/modern nursery/eco friendly/




What have you learned about yourself through your work?
That working for yourself is much harder than working for anyone else.
That I worry too much and must stop and relax more than I do.
That I love connecting with my customers and clients- honestly - I am in LOVE with my customers and wholesale folk! In love!
That I am more competitive than I thought I was.

That my husband and I are really hard workers and we know our children will grow and see this in us.
We are so excited to share the idea of following dreams with our sons.

If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?
I so want to paint. I used to mess about with painting in college. I also want to sew more.

What's your definition of a perfect day?

The whole family waking up on one of the Greek Isles (Mykonos or Paros- we love) with frappes and large trays of breakfast- all of us dressed in white gorgeous bed sheets and the wind pouring in the open windows, the sun so bright our eyes squint... Yes- we need a vacation! :)


Thank you Amy!


December 22, 2008

La Pomme



Artist:
Apol Lejano-Massebieau

Location:
Aigues Mortes, southwest France

Web site: La Pomme, La Pomme Stories

Blog: La Pomme


What do you create?
The tag line for my first shop, La Pomme, is “toys for kids big and small.” I’m a toy-maker, making plush products out of fabrics. I have a weakness for linen, white cotton, and gingham. If you’re wondering what toys for big kids are, that would be soft sculptures, like my swans and my white fruits. I also have these things called Boxed Universes, which are teeny-tiny dioramas that I make inside tin cans or matchboxes.


How did you come up with your business name?

From my first name. I was originally called “Apple,” but for some reason at 18 I thought that that was too cloyingly sweet and changed the spelling to what it is now. I live in France and speak French 90-percent of the time, so I called my shop “La Pomme,” which is French for “The Apple.”




When and why did you decide to start your business?
This may not seem like the most professional of responses, but the truth is that I just fell in love with Etsy and wanted to be part of it. I signed up in October 2006, started really loving the site in early 2007, and by around July or August of 2007, I had set up shop.


Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?
This is a question I always find hard to answer. I don’t really know, they just come like a light bulbs turning on in my head, in the form of either a line for a story—and from that I’d create a handmade fairytale book for my bookshop—or as an image. Just the day before yesterday, this very clear image of two white cocoons hanging from a branch popped into my head, and since last night I’ve been working on transforming that into a soft sculpture using crochet.




Which of the tools you use is your favorite?
My old reliable Singer Starlet from the 1970s, with kitschy orange and yellow flowers decorating the top panel!


What keeps you motivated?
The work itself. The making of these objects give me a lot of happiness.




What would be a dream project that you’d love to work on?
A show where I’d be allowed to create a forest. It would be all in white cotton and white thread. I’d make four-legged creatures and birds. I’d crochet spider webs and white moss. There would be blades of grass made from embroidery floss. It would look absolutely magnificently ethereal!


What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?
Have focus. I said this already in a past interview but I think it’s worth repeating here: You have to learn to control your creative exuberance and not go off in too many directions all at one. Ask yourself what your main product line or service is, and stick to that. For a while, at least. As you grow, you can branch out, but still I think it is important to have it clear in your head what you and your business are about exactly.




What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your work?
My quick goal is to make people smile. My deeper intent is for my works to help them let their imagination run free for a while.


What has been the most important lesson you've learned while running your business?
To take a break. You’ll be producing really crappy work if you’re running on empty.




If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?
I’d love to have the time to learn to hand-print on fabric.


What's your definition of a perfect day?
Lots of good work done, lots of cuddling given and taken, and very good food in between!

Thank you Apol!

Crafty Synergy is a blog of note!

Thank you to Blogger for naming Crafty Synergy a blog of note today—for the second time in the past 6 months! Welcome to those of you who've never visited before. Enjoy looking around!

December 12, 2008

Infusion



Artist: Abby Meadow Campbell
Location: Yachats, Oregon
Web site: Infusion - Etsy
Blog: Infusion Fibers
 
What do you create?
Currently I make handbags, totes, pouches, clutches and sometimes pillows filled with lavender and buckwheat hulls or kapok. I focus on sustainable textiles such as hemp, linen, jute and organic cotton, as well as recycled fabrics of various kinds. I have many ideas for the future and plan to have a line of organic clothing available sometime after the new year.

How did you come up with your business name?
I love the depth of texture in the weave of a natural fiber cloth, particularly that of a rich linen or hemp. I was trying to convey the way that textured weave feels to me. I'm not sure I did that very well, but the word infusion finally was the one that stuck for me. I like the quality of the word, and the versatility of meanings it has felt relevant to my work, even texture aside :)



When and why did you decide to start your business?
I have worked from home for years and love the freedom it allows, but the idea of making a living by being creative would have been a nearly un-thought-of-dream only a year ago.

I began thinking about trying to sell some of my sewn items just over a year ago, without really planning to start a “business” per se. I had taken up sewing again and found the creative outlet to be very fulfilling. I finally opened my etsy shop March '08 and I have been so enthused with how infusion has progressed, since day 1! The idea of making a living on my creative endeavors is not so far off at this point! I am thoroughly excited about what I do.

Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?
I am most inspired by textures and shapes, quality fabrics and fibers. I like to sketch a new concept with either a texture or a shape as my starting point, and then develop the functional finished item from there.

Another major inspiration for me, and is always working alongside my inspiration from texture, is in making a better product... a pillow that really travels and is actually natural; a bag that is attractive AND super functional (and made of natural fibers of course!). I find it really hard to shop for things and hit it all. I seek out sustainable products, and often find them lacking in a certain level of functionality. I am inspired to make something better.



Which of the tools you use is your favorite?
It's hard to pick one, but if I had to choose, aside from my sewing machine and cutting tools, I appreciate more than almost anything a little 6 inch stainless steel ruler I “inherited” from my boyfriend's toolbox. I also really enjoy playing with my quilting foot, and I would not be able to do what I do without my IBM ThinkPad.

What keeps you motivated?
At the core of my motivation, is the desire to bring natural and eco into beautiful and functional.

I have endless ideas and if I'm not careful I could go all over the place on any given day. Within the realm of staying on task though, my customers are definitely a major motivating force. They are so supportive and always have such interesting ideas. I also find I work well under a certain amount of pressure. It helps me keep my focus sharpened and sustained.



What would be a dream project that you’d love to work on?
Actively re-inventing everyday items into natural fiber, beautiful, functional, versatile and exquisitely useful things. It really could be anything in the realm that I and my sewing machine could accomplish, but what really excites me and feels so perfectly natural, is to create things that come from the earth and can easily and naturally return to the earth. Simple, isn't it? If everyone did this, we would be doing so well.

What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?
Do what you enjoy and what excites you. Work on expanding upon your own original ideas and don't be afraid to try something new and different. We are all uniquely creative individuals and we all draw inspiration from one another, and from the world around us. Truly expressing yourself will only inspire others. On that note, I encourage you to keep in mind what will really matter in the long run, to yourself, your loved ones, and the planet we all live on. In other words, act with intent.



What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your work?
Well, I would first like to say that I absolutely love what I do and take the greatest care in everything I make. An item from infusion is an item that will endure for many years and will be useful in a variety of ways (and when you are all done using it, you will more than likely be able to compost 99% or more of it!) Infusion is a coming together of nature, beauty, texture and function.

What has been the most important lesson you've learned while running your business?
First of all, go for it, be original and do what excites you. Next I would say, if you are not a money person, get help from someone who is! I wish I had created a system for tracking my finances right away, as it would be so much easier now. I am way behind, which makes it even harder to get started. Also, taking time to set up the right space for photography is well worth it over the long run. I still need to work on this myself.



If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?
There are SO many. I have just taught myself to knit again, and would like to find the time to make use of it. Mornings are a slow and quiet time for me, so maybe it will work to fit it in as a mellow morning activity. Also, I am very interested in learning to print my own fabrics.

What's your definition of a perfect day?
Many days come pretty close... Waking when I'm ready, to sunshine and blue skies (or even the occasional clouds and rain), with the ocean (or some other fantastic natural space) out my door, and my boyfriend close by. A hot drink and a gentle morning. A long walk on the beach. A nice long stretch. Some hours spent sewing. Some hours spent learning new things... I like the simple things... I'm an all around happy girl :)


Thank you Abby!

December 04, 2008

Reyart



Artist: Reya Veltman
Location: Geleen, The Netherlands
Web site: Reyart
Blog: Reyaveltman 

What do you create?
At the moment, predominantly felted accessories and home decor.

How did you come up with your business name?
I tend to dabble in a few fields (drawing, painting, linoprinting, photography, felting etc.) and wanted something simple which encompassed all my creative endeavors, all my artwork. It's a play on words combining my first name 'Reya' and the word 'art'.

When and why did you decide to start your business?
My business started on the 1st of February 2008. Although I had been creating for as long as I can remember, it was only when it really took off in Etsy did I think that this could be a serious gig.



Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?
Nature is a huge inspiration for me. I adore the irregular, organic shapes you come across while walking through the woods or along the beach. Many of the neutral, earthy tones are also reflected in my work. I also find that the simple beauties of everyday life can be immensely inspiring.

Which of the tools you use is your favorite?
I would have to say my hands. During the wetfelting process, the only materials involved are your hands, the wool, and soapy water. There is a small level of control when felting in this manner, and you can use your hands to shape an object, but after a while, you need to let the felting process run its own course. It's this idea which appeals to me; the conscious forming of an object in the beginning stages, then allowing it to felt together into the finished piece, and feeling that transformation in your hands.



You work in different mediums. Which one is your favorite or the one you couldn’t live without?
Felting, definitely. It's a new found love, and one which I feel I have a lot yet to learn.

What would be a dream project that you’d love to work on?
I've got three. The first being a set of larger than life felted lamp shades in irregular shapes of elongated pods. Hard to describe, I know, but give me a pencil and pad and I'll sketch it out for you. The reason behind this, white handmade felt and light is a magical combination. Just the thought of the translucency and softness of the felt, the visible fibers, and pure magnitude of the lampshades makes me swoon.

The second being a large rug made entirely of felted pebbles stitched together. My felted pebbles are made using actual rocks, but the pebbles of this floor piece would be made only of wool roving. Can you imagine just walking barefoot on that? And last of all, anything having to do with Marcel Wanders.



What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?
Stay focused and positive. Accept that there will be good times and slow times, and keep creating nonetheless.

What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your work?
That every single piece is made with love, as corny as it sounds. There's so much of myself and my thoughts in every single item I make.



What have you learned about yourself through your work?
The most important thing I've learnt is to be creative for myself. There was a time long ago when I felt I was creating for others, felt too influenced by other people’s opinions, and was too fixated on what everyone else thought about my art. Glad to say that it's no longer so. Now I make art which appeals to me, and just follow my own flow of thoughts when creating.



If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?
Pottery! I've wanted to try my hand at pottery and ceramics for years, and coincidentally, I've already registered for a course next year. Starts January.

What's your definition of a perfect day?
Waking up to a warm and sunny day in Paris with my dear husband. Fresh croissants, lots of photo-taking, and frequent cafe breaks with moleskine at hand. Perfection!


Thank you Reya!


December 01, 2008

Nea Wear



Artist: Janick Gravel
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Web site: Nea Wear
Blog: Creativadoration

What do you create?
As of right now, I create jewelry for women and embroidered wall decor art, which I call Wall Wear.

How did you come up with your business name?
When I was looking for a name, I thought about the prefix “neo”, which means “new”. But it sounded too masculine for what I was making, so I just replaced the “o” by an “a”, and voilĂ , it made Nea! As simple as that!

When and why did you decide to start your business?
Actually, I already had my own business when I started making jewelry. I was a trained graphic designer, and was working freelance from home under the name Fonetik for more than 3 years at the time. At first, I wanted to sell my items because I started having way to much jewelry for myself (and working from home, you don’t go out everyday, so you don’t adorn yourself as much either!) and I wanted to see if people would actually buy some! A week later, I got a feature on a big blog and it all continued from there! Of course, I didn’t know then that 2 years later that I would launch my Wall Wear collection and that it would give my that extra push I needed to switch roads and be a multidisciplinary artist full time!



Where do you get your inspiration for your projects?
Materials, for sure! I love texture, I love color, fabrics, beads, threads, buttons, clay, paper, and so much more! All materials, even the ones I don’t use, inspire me. Mixing different components and making it all just go together well, that’s what inspires me!

Which of the tools you use is your favorite?
I would have to say that in 2008 it has absolutely been embroidery hoops! If you could see my stash of metal and wooden hoops, you would understand... I’m kinda addicted to searching for them and buying them!

What keeps you motivated?
Materials, again! When I find a new linen color or new beads, it just gets all my creative juices flowing back again and I just want to DO stuff! Of course, sometimes it’s hard to stay on top of motivation when months are slow and things are not going as well as you’d planned, but some new supplies always makes everything better! Let’s just say I shop a lot for supplies! Lol :)



What would be a dream project that you’d love to work on?
I have tons of little dream projects in mind, and I try to reach them one by one, when I feel the time is right. I’m a big fan of pottery and clay and the artists that make it, so in 2009 you’ll find a collaboration in my shop between a clay artist (I won’t give a name yet!) and myself. It’s already in the works! Another dream project would be... Well I can’t tell yet either! It will be another 2009 surprise, a new skill that is not jewelry or embroidery. I like surprises, I like keeping some things secrets until the last second and I like to do the whole “official collection launch” too! So, stay tuned!

What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business?
Have great unique products and work at it a lot, and work and work! I would also tell them that it’s not easy, that people around will think it’s more “glamorous” than it really is (money wize) and that some will push you forward and some will try to pull you back. But keep charging! When you know for yourself, inside, that you can do it, you can and will make it happen! Believe in yourself, it’s as simple and as complicated as it sounds, but for me, it’s just worth everything!



Do you take your own photographs? If so, can you share three photography tips?
I do (although I have a few items that feature a friend model that were taken by a professionnal photographer). First, the best advice has got to be to use natural light. Flash is NOT your friend! Completely outside doesn’t do it for me either, it’s too bright. I like the contrats that comes with natural but indirect light.

Second, I would suggest taking tons of pictures for each items. For example, I need 5 for my Etsy listings, but I actually take between 20 to 40 pictures for all my items. Why choose the top 5 of 8 pictures, right? Chances are you’ll get more lucky with 5/40 odds!

And last but not least, I know it can be painful and boring, but really try to learn Photoshop or another photography software. I couldn’t live without my Photoshop. It can brighten a picture in a snap (once you learn a little bit of skills), adjust your colors and add contrast. At first it will be hard, but it IS really worth it!



What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your work?
That it’s evolving! I think that since I launched the Wall Wear in June 2008, I see creating slightly in a different light. I adore doing jewelry, but making everything from scratch like with my stitching is a new expericence that is really unique to live. I sometimes get requests for jewelry styles I don’t make anymore, which is OK, and if I have what it takes on hand I usually do it. But sometimes I won’t, too. Sometimes it’s just like — I went forward and don’t want to go back. Not because it’s bad or anything, I’m just not there anymore. Just like any other job, I guess!

What has been the most important lesson you've learned while running your business?
To love it all: the good and the bad, the pretty and the ugly, the strenght and the weakness. When you learn to see the good in the bad, the good ones are also so much better!!



If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use?
Besides the new skill I said I wouldn’t spill the secret earlier in the interview, I’d love to learn more knitting (I just know how to make the normal lines stitches right now) and start crochet, and learn a little bit about sewing! In a dream world, I would do pottery as well (I had done a little in high school and loved it), but that’s more a plan for in many years!



What's your definition of a perfect day?
A perfect day would consist of waking up to a sale, a bright not too cold not too hot day perfect for taking pictures in the morning after a little gardening, making some stitching and jewelry on the balcony in the afternoon, and then going out for a meal or coffee with friends and a lot of chatting!



Thank you Janick!

November 30, 2008

back again!

For reasons beyond my control and completely out of the blue, Blogger blocked my access to Crafty Synergy. CS was flagged for suspicion of spamming, which couldn't be further from the truth. It took me more than 5 weeks to get this resolved but here I am again—finally! I've missed sharing more interviews with you.

I will be back up to speed in the coming days. Thank you for still stopping by and not giving up on me!

I hope you've been enjoying a great weekend!
Patricia

September 23, 2008

checking in

Hello friends! I apologize for the slow posting. The end of my summer was very hectic (writing a paper craft book!) and this month we had to deal with a hurricane. Needless to say, as much as I love this blog, I simply didn't have had enough time to work on it. The good news is that I've been in touch with some talented artists and have more interviews coming. Please hang in there for a bit more. I promise I'll have something up in the next few days.

As always, thank you, thank you so much for all your visits and comments. I deeply appreciate them all.

I hope you're all having a great week!
Patricia

August 12, 2008

Elizabeth Soule Photography



Artist: Elizabeth Soule
Location: Portland, OR
Web site: www.esoule.com
Blog: www.esoule.blogspot.com

What do you create?
Polaroid photos, framed photos, prints and cards

When and why did you decide to start your business?
I've studied photography for years and wanted to share my work with others. After reading blogs and following a few designers who were selling on etsy, I decided to go for it thinking it would be a part time hobby. It's become a full time job that I am grateful for each day.



Where do you get your inspiration for your projects? 
I look for things that interest me or amuse me. I love to go antique shopping and find weird or quirky items that you don't see often.

Which of the tools you use is your favorite? 
My polaroid camera

What keeps you motivated? 
My fiance is my biggest fan and constantly encourages me. All the positive feedback that I get from people also reminds me how much other people enjoy the work. I also check blogs and websites daily to see all the great art that is being created.



How do you get the word out about your work? 
Flickr, blogging and emailing. I research any blog or shop that I'm interested in being part of and make sure that my work is a match.

What is your main goal for the next 6-12 months? 
Release a new polaroid series as well as a fine art series. Add new products to my etsy site. Produce more work for people to enjoy.



What advice would you give to someone starting a creative business? 
Do your research, be persistent and believe in yourself. don't be afraid to try something, but start small, it's easier to scale up than to scale down.

What's the most important thing you'd like people to know/understand about your work? 
I just want people to enjoy it. I really like to make things that are beautiful or provide a positive emotion. I love seeing people walk by my art and smile or life and just say how much they like it.



What has been the most important lesson you've learned while running your business? 
Roll with the punches. I've had some ups and downs, shipping problems, some equipment issues and the discontinuation of the film that I'm using. I just keep adapting with each change that I encounter.

Who are some of your favorite indie designers/artists? 
There are so many great artists out in the blogosphere right now. Some people that I've been following for awhile include Lisa Solomon, Alyson Fox, Matte Stephens. I also love looking through photography books and magazines to remind myself of all the beauty its possible to capture.



If you had the time, what new craft/medium would you like to learn or use? 
I want to try everything... At the moment I've been learning letterpress as well as working on my sewing skills.

What's your definition of a perfect day? 
It changes daily.... A big breakfast (my favorite meal) exploring a new place and photographing with friends, shopping, cupcakes, a fun active activity and dinner with friends. That's so vague....but mostly just to be with people and have fun.


Thank you Elizabeth!