Friday, 26 September 2008

Merry-Go-Round!

Jump on our merry go round and join a group of artists and crafts-women from around the world, as they link hands and tell you a little bit about their lives in craft.

Something a bit different for you today...on the last Thursday/Friday of each month, a little group of us will be coming together to give our responses to the same question, to provide an insight into the people behind the products. Our question for this month is: What was the journey to your craft? So, here goes....!
As a child, right through to my teens, I yearned to be a fashion designer...but then, doesn't every little girl? Every spare hour was spent fine tuning my model drawing 'skills', with the utmost attention to the drape of the fabric, and peculiar colour combinations.
Cut to college....and a graphic design degree (fashion's too cut-throat, isn't it?!). Hmmn. Graphics weren't really my 'thing'. I felt a yen to restore paintings in darkened rooms in huge art galleries...so, I specialised in illustration. Most of my illustrations were collages and three dimensional works that needed to be photographed in order to be printed in magazines - I had a whale of a time, but something was missing.
It's taken many years to discover that missing element. I took a wrong turn somewhere, back in those teenage years when your head's not screwed on properly. I plodded on, as you do, and then marriage and my little girls arrived, so naturally things changed - and here I am now. My husband turned forty recently, his career as a product designer was shifting down a different path so we took the chance to make a change. We upped sticks and moved here, an old lodge deep in an ancient forest, armed with a big plan. We're in the process of setting up a luxury tipi holiday site. But with this huge lifestyle change comes huge pressures...we all know what those are!
I took to textiles as a means of therapy, I think. I picked up some cloth in a quiet moment, and cut and stitched my way to an epiphany! I'm relaxed when I'm sewing; ideas are always bumbling about in my head and I feel good about it! My children are lucky. If they wish to take a similar route, doors are open for them - textiles are an option whilst they're at school and there are many excellent further education courses they can undertake. Our life is good here - we have the wonder of the great outdoors, we have our tipi poles and logs, and I have my textiles. Only one thing missing...that's a healthy bank balance!!

Please click on the links in the sidebar where you see the Merry-Go-Round, and discover the journeys of wonderful artisans around the globe. Please remember that we are all in different time zones...if you don't see their post when you arrive on their blogs, check back later. You'll be glad you did!

12 comments:

The Great Ethan Allen said...

Very inspiring! I don't want to bore you with my story or that of my wifes. but we are here on etsy...funny when I think of the strange path that got us here....

Easterya said...

Thanks for your lovely comment, I feel really touched!
You work's amazing, so colourful, really original!! I can relate to your story as well, a wrong turn somewhere, something missing, until a recent change of lifestyle allowing, finally, time to explore and enjoy being "crafty"! :)

meherio68 said...

Do keep us posted about your tipi site! There's a great idea for a holiday...
It's so comforting to realize that you can always take yet another turn and change things around— for the better—, isn't it?

Lily Pang said...

Making art is very therapeutic in deed. Thank you for sharing! Wish your tipi resort business success!

Ruth said...

Charlotte - your story is delightful. I can picture you in the Forest of Dean with your tipis....just a lovely image and you with your needle and thread surrounded by lots of cool coloured bits and bobs! and your girls running around....
and I love the logs too!....never mind your gorgeous colors in your artwork.

cathy said...

Really interesting to read your story - I am always fascinated to know how people got to where they are and am quite a fate-minded person:) I hope you continue to enjoy your textiles work, inspire your kids and enjoy the tipis - sounds wonderful. (Cathy november moon)

Half an Acre said...

tipi site? I'm there! let me know when it opens!
I've posted mine now! sorry i'm so late!

Marian said...

Yeah, that's the bad thing of being a full time artist... hahaha the bank balane is never positive! Not for now at least.
It is nice actually to read that so many people around the world are choosing the lower a gear, moved to naturee and change life. We all suffer certain consequences (mainly lack of cash) but Im so much happier than before. Must be because out true calling keeps us entertained, happy and content.
You get that luxury tipi site ready, and we are coming over!
:)

Sara's Texture Crafts said...

Just popping in to say 'Hi', a great read... (I'm dreaming of holidaying in a tipi now!) and looking forward to our next posts.
Sxx

Kayla coo said...

Hi Charlotte,
You must let me know when your up and running so we can pay you a visit, it sounds so lovely.
Once you find your creative niche there will be no stopping you.Mx

Cary Walker said...

wow, it was really great to read this! you only get little bits of everyone's lives when you read blogs... it's really interesting to get this bigger glimpse into yours!

'fancypicnic' said...

I just have to say thank you to everyone for all of your comments! I don't find it easy to write about myself - as opposed to work or general day to day tittle tattle - but you've all said such lovely things! Warms the cockles of my heart!

Hang on...those tipis...why don't I just start an art/craft commune?!