Friday, December 16, 2011

Interview with a Creator

I saw an interview with Stacie Bloomfield, a friend-of-a-friend artist on Etsy recently
( http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/2011/featured-seller-gingiber/?ref=fp_featured).


Stacie is very talented and very fun to watch.  She has an amazing sense of design. 

The wonderful photo of her was taken by Natalie Noack  Freeman who I am lucky to know (but not as well as I would like!) and whose husband I got to watch grow up. 



Check out her website, "Natalie Creates" at www.natalienoack.blogspot.com.  Just don't hold it against me that she takes such amazing photos and I take really crappy ones!

Anyway... I LOVE this interview!

I also loved the way the questions made me think about my own life. So, however self-centered it may be, this is me:





And here are my answers to those same questions:


Tell us a bit about yourself.

I'm a 45-year-old mom of three amazing daughters.  I have a bachelor's degee in English and Communications/Journalism and a Master's degree in clinical psychology.  I am a former property owner, landlord, renovator, and house flipper.  I am an adoptee and a former adoption search/reunion consultant.  I am a blogger and an author.  I am guilty of serial careers because I am interested in EVERYTHING (well, almost)! 

Apart from creating things, what do you do?

TOO MUCH! I am the church secretary and graphic designer in the mornings. I have two flea market booths that I try to focus on in the afternoons before it's time to pick the kids up from school and make dinner. I am always looking for furniture to paint or stray objects to optimize. I have an evening job as a caregiver.  I am the mother of three daughters (18, 14, and 10), the step-mother of two boys (19 and 11), and the caretaker of a herd of dogs and a bevy of cats.  I work, drive, cook, clean, do never-ending laundry and dishes, and then squeeze in the things that I love when I can: writing, decorating, and creating.

What would be the title of your memoir? Why?

"Leap of Faith".  Because, when I was born (and before I was adopted at the age of ten days), the nurses in the hospital named me "Faith".   And because all the best things in my life have come from taking the biggest leaps of faith. There is so much God in every leap!  My current book is tentatively titled "Honeysuckle Hill". 

Where does your inspiration come from?

I get lots of inspiration from magazines and, most recently, from Pinterest (www.pinterest.com).  I store what I see in magazines and that magazine way of thinking in my head and then project it onto things I find.  I am extremely visual and I love color.  I can just look at something and envision it's potential and what it will look like when I'm done with it.  Blessedly, my projects actually DO come out looking at least as good as my vision. I love elevating something that was headed for the trash (or already in the trash) to something that someone would enjoy and want to keep (and buy out of my flea market booth or off craigslist!).  

What does handmade mean to you?

To me, handmade means: resourcefulness, the concept with which I am most enamoured. I love making something out of nothing, making trash out of treasure, finding the good in everything and everyone!  To me, handmade things embody resourcefulness, creativity, color, art, and love!

Who has been most influential in your craft?

Nancy Ernest Ingram -- my parents' high school friend who grew up to be the editor of Tulsa Home and Garden magazine and then a field editor for Meredith Publishing (Better Homes and Gardens magazine, Do It Yourself magazine, etc.) and, later, author of Modern Country: Reinterpreting a Classic Style (http://www.amazon.com/Modern-Country-Nancy-Ingram/dp/1586857827).  I've known her all my life and she has always inspired me with her interest in decorating, flea marketing, old stuff, and just plain being fun, positive, and interested in the world around her.  Her husband, Terry Ingram, is a close second!
When did you know you were an artist/maker?

I have always wanted to make things.  My grandfather gave me a little mini sewing machine when I was about 4.  I guess he could see me trying to sew even then.  When I was 15, he gave me the sewing machine that I still use today.  As a child and teenager, I dabbled in every kind of sewing and needlework (knitting, crochet, cross-stitch, embroidery, etc.).  I was also always fascinated with houses and furnishings. 

 I believe that what you play with most as a child relates directly to what you should do occupationally as an adult.  I played with doll houses, drew houses, built lego houses, loved play houses, dreamed of tree houses, and adored "playing house".  I am still all about houses and the things that go into them.
Also, I decided that I wanted to be a writer when I was 10.   I just didn't have anything to write yet. But now I do! 

How would you describe your creative process?

Channeling! Projects find ME.  Creativity and writing seem to come THROUGH me rather than coming from me.  Weird, but that's how I experience it.  My projects seem to come together via a life of their own.  I love watching this process unfold.  I believe that creative flow is part of the greater life force that is God. 

If you could peek inside the studio of any artist, designer or craftsman (dead or alive), who would it be?

I was so fortunate to grow up sitting on the steps of the sunporch art studio of our family friend and neighbor, Joey Baker, watching her paint.  She later married Joe Baker (http://windsorbetts.com/Search_by_Artist/Baker__Joe/index.html), also an artist, and then I got to watch BOTH of them in action as well as the way they influenced and escalated each other.  They were wonderful role models of creativity for me! 

What handmade possession do you most cherish?

I love the things my daughters make. All three of my daughters are very creative.  I only regret that I don't have a good method for displaying all their creations!  Must remedy this!

I also cherish the christening dress and blanket that were handmade on the Texas prairie for my grandmother when she was born in 1908 .  I was so touched that, of all the grandchildren, she chose to give these items to me because she believed I would appreciate them the most.  I do.  I'm not sure who they were made by but my grandmother's mother died of typoid in 1910.  If she made them, they are all the more precious to me. 

How do you get out of your creative ruts?

Magazines! And decorating books!  And, most recently, Pinterest! But also, patience. I've learned that, if I just wait with an openness to the process, the solution will come to me. Often, it's that I haven't yet found that piece that's been coming to me that completes the project. Sometimes it's an idea or a color or a picture or a fabric or a piece of something. I love to watch this process unfold even when I'm frustrated at being stalled out.

Where would you like to be in ten years?

Right where I am. Minus the financial problems, the delayed projects, the absence of my husband (who, for work reasons, lives in Oklahoma), and the constant stress and feeling of being overwhelmed. I just want to be in my house that I adore. After 16 years (and lots of tweaking), I love this house more than any other (and I've seen a lot of other houses as a realtor). I would like to have my husband beside me and my kids nearby (hopefully, having the University of Arkansas less than a mile away will help with that!), and I would love to have caught up with projects, repairs, maintenance, and optimizing around here so that my house can be at it's best.  My fondest secret aspiration is to have my house pulled together enough to be chosen to be on the neighborhood elementary school's annual home tour -- and to be the house that everyone loves the best! 

Beyond that, I would love to be writing and creating full-time -- hopefully in a bigger way than I am now and with my husband involved in a big way.  I am always at my best when I am creating and "projecting" and we have so much fun procuring projects together!

I would also like to write a book a year.  I 'm usually not a traveller, but I think it would be so much fun to travel and write on the road with my husband. He's promised to drive the RV while I write in the back. DEAL!



 

1 comment:

  1. I hope you get all those things you want--you deserve it!

    ReplyDelete