Thursday, June 4, 2009

Artist Interview: Emma of Russian Doll Designs

Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to Emma of Russian Doll Designs. She sells art made through a variety of print methods such as lino, etching and monoprint. She also sells jewelry.

For some fun background info. Emma doesn't have just one favorite color because she thinks there are too many colors to choose from! If you had breakfast with her, you'd realize that her favorite breakfast food is a fry-up (for those who didn't know - I had to look it up! Check the link). Her favorite vacation would be to New Zealand "I like city breaks but the best holiday I've had was a trip to New Zealand - I loved the people, the relaxed attitudes and the great food." Emma also states, "that, as a UK seller on etsy, I am hoping etsy will become more well-known in the UK, as a lot of people still don't know about this amazing site. I sell internationally but am also doing my best to spread the word here!"

Here are some questions I asked her:
1)What started you in your art/craft?
I know everyone says this but I really have been making things for as long as I can remember! My mum was an art and textiles teacher so when I was small I was always given a project to keep me busy and got to learn all sorts of skills including knitting, crochet, batik, weaving, drawing and painting. More recently I got into silversmithing and printmaking through taking some courses and I've spent the last few years learning a range of different printmaking techniques and qualifying in silversmithing.

2)What are your favorite materials/tools?
In printmaking, obviously my main materials are paper and ink! I'm also lucky to have access to a print studio with a range of presses. The jewellery I currently have in my etsy shop is made with a lot of beads, buttons and marbles - and I've have to pick out marbles as my favourite material at the moment! I have always loved them and I now love making jewellery which incorporates them.

3)Who's your biggest inspiration?
I don't have one single person who's my biggest inspiration. It would be the people I have worked with and met in the print studio, the people I know through silversmithing and also all the people whose amazing work I have seen on etsy. My work is inspired mainly by nostalgia and childhood memories and toys.

4)How long have you being producing your work/How did you get started in it?
I have only had my etsy shop since March 2009 so I'm still very new to it. However I've been making the prints and jewellery which you will see there for the past few years, along with lots of other things! I am hoping to branch out into some textiles in my shop soon.

5)Where do you hope your art will take you in the next year?
I will be doing some craft shows soon which I have never done before, so I am looking forward to it but am also a bit nervous! I would love to be able to spend more time making things, and my ideal scenario would be to work part time in my 9 to 5 job, and be able to spend the rest of my time making and selling things.

6)Is there anything you want people to get/take away from your work?
I just want people to be happy with anything they buy and I find it very exciting to think that if someone buys one of my pieces it will be out there in the world in someone else's house or being worn by someone! The majority of my work is inspired by memories and objects from my childhood (hence the marbles, buttons, paper snowflakes etc.) and I hope that some of these things spark some memories for other people too.

7)What advice would you give to an artist just starting out?
I am new myself so still learning from everyone else, but I think the main thing would be to go for it, and don't think that it's something only other people can do. I wish I had set up my etsy shop years ago, as it's finally given me an outlet for all the work I was producing.

Here are some selections from her shop:

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