Photo by Angela Fama
Art and design is my life, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I always knew I was going to be an artist of some kind when I grew up.
As a kid, I was terribly shy, and you’d likely find me with a pad of paper and a box of pencil crayons or felts, drawing, drawing, drawing. I was into all kinds of creative things, sewing quilts and making furniture for my dollhouse, creating the latest fashions for my barbies, and drawing funny family gathering “portraits” where everyone always had a stubbie beer in their hand, including the dog! Early influences of family get togethers, like camping trips to Manning Park, BC (and one where we all dressed up like Ed Grimley for a family portrait), going to plays and the symphony with my gran, and loads of reading, drawing, and making stuff, even so far as painting the latest valley girl speak on my bedroom walls- so awesome– all let me play and explore and just be me.
My gran, who was into all kinds of needlearts, spinning, weaving, dying her own yarns with natural dyes she made herself, and sewing, taught me to sew, and that opened up a whole new world of sewing my own clothes and a big love of fashion.
I had intentions of studying fashion design as a career choice, and determinedly went forth to conquer the fashion world, taking all the sewing classes I could through highschool, and was always asked to help other students with their projects when the teacher was busy. I was even very brave for a very shy teen and took a college level fashion illustration course at the local college.
Apparently, though, a creative arts career wasn’t considered something I “should” do, and in order to graduate I had to take a generic career choice test that showed I would best be suited as an air traffic controller, a doctor, or a lawyer. With little to no math skills or interest in learning science, say what? I promptly told the career counsellor hell no, and I had already decided on a path, buh bye, see ya later. I’m sure they wrote some fine comments on my school record after that but hey. I had a plan!
At the last second, I switched gears and decided to study graphic design instead. So glad I did, I found my passion in all things typography, layout, and design. Keep in mind this was pre-computer days so everything was all created by hand, hand-lettering, old school layout with mylar ruby lithe overlays, colour keys, and huge PMT cameras (all outdated equipment now but trust me, ouf!)
But this old school training taught me the actual “craft” of design which gets lost a lot out there these days. Drawing, visual layout, making decisions, keeping your work clean, professionally presented and created, and learning the skills of good design rules and basics, all good stuff and things I still use today.
Fast forward a few-ish years (26 to be exact) of good old practical life and honest to goodness hard work experience, and here I am! My work is a big happy mix of everything I do, all rolled into one. I love learning and trying new things, techniques, and methods, and utilizing my old school skills as a unique twist in the design work I do for my clients.
I’m into fabric design, painting, quilting, sewing, embellishing- glitter and sequins anyone?- and you’ll probably see those influences in all of my work across the board.
I am so thrilled to have several fabric collections out in the world with Robert Kaufman Fabrics (and more coming up!), a few published patterns in books and magazines like Canadian quilter Cheryl Arkison’s newest book and Quilting Arts Magazine, some awards for my work both quilting and painting, having co-founded our local Modern Quilt Guild, and most recently entering local arts challenges to test my painting chops.
I love typography, vintage, shabby, weathered, and mid-century style, and seeing the beauty in old tattered things. Treasure hunting at the local thrifts, fashion new and old, a stylish pair of Clarks shoes (or three), British telly and choccies, and collecting and stashing away precious pieces of fabrics for special quilty projects all make me happy.
The best part? I’m still doing what I love, when others have long given up, on my own terms, creating my own way of doing things, and helping people. And that’s what it’s really all about for me, helping people make their creative visions a reality. Together with my husband Norm, aka the Web Guy, we work hard creating a life and business we love, (you can find us here!) and are passionate for.
Things we can help you with are projects like a great new logo that really says what you’re all about, a funky new tshirt design, a custom fabric design, some beautiful party invites, unique illustrations for your kids book, and so very much more!- it’s all part of how we can help you and your business show the world who you are, and get loads of happy compliments to boot!
Our job and our passion is to help you, by doing what we love most for you, to help you do what you love most, and make you feel happy, comfortable, and confident, while working with us. And that’s what it’s all about! #truth #nobullsh*t