Thank you Lisa

by admin on 16/06/2006

in News+Letters

Lisa is leaving Whipup – thank you Lisa for your informative and interesting posts and for being such a great inspiration to us all.

lisa congdon - self

Lisa Congdon
see my posts in my author archive

bird in the hand

My name is Lisa Congdon, and I live in the heart of the Mission District in San Francisco, California. I am an almost totally self-taught craftsperson and artist, although my mother did have a hand in teaching me how to sew at a very young age. Making time in my studio can be a challenge; I have a demanding full time job as the Director of Program Development at an education non-profit organization. I love my work, and it pays the rent, but I cannot imagine a life without art or without creating. Both parts of my life feed each other and give me a sense of purpose. I am very

Creatively, I work in many mediums: paper collage, fabric, embroidery, paint, transfer, screen-printing, latch-hook, illustration and photography. I make both handmade goods like pillows and stuffed birds of my own design, as well as fine art like collage, illustration, textile art and photography, which I show in galleries. I am most inspired by nature—and am completely taken with tree/wood imagery and bird imagery, which I incorporate into much of my work. I am also highly influenced by mid-century and contemporary design, typography, street art and graffiti and children’s book illustrations from the 50’s through the 70’s.

I have been both inspired (and to a certain degree influenced (though it is not always visible) by a number of contemporary artists, including my favorites Barry McGee and Margaret Kilgallen, The Clayton Brothers, Thomas Campbell, Rex Ray, and Jim Hauser. And I also have a great deal of admiration and affection for the work of late artists and designers Alexander Calder, Ray and Charles Eames, Evaline Ness and Alexander Girard, and photographer, William Eggleston.

Part of why I love living and working in San Francisco is because art and emerging artists are such a rich part of the fabric of this city. Right outside my door are amazing displays of street art, and galleries and art resources abound. I get lots of my supplies at weekly trips to the many thrift stores in my neighborhood. I scrounge for fabric and ephemera, along with clothes for myself and other cool finds for my personal collections of odd things. My favorite independent art and design stores in San Francisco include Flax ( and Arch ( The best place to find out about local art shows at the hundreds of small galleries around San Francisco (and some of the bigger ones) is

I like to make something everyday, even if it is a small drawing in my notebook as I sit in a meeting at work. My advice to anyone wanting to be an artist or craftsperson is to write down every idea you have and take lots of risks, even if you are not sure you have the skill to execute your idea. Some of your greatest creations will be born from experiments.

lisa congdon - cushion

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Barbara June 16, 2006 at 9:10 am

Lisa, I grew up in the “southwest” heart of the Mission—ohhh way back in the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s! It was a wonderful adventure—Hales on Mission St. Handy’s on Gurerrero. The Newberrys, 5,10, AND 15 Cent store. The El Capitan, Crown, New Mission, Tower theaters; St. James Creamery, Polyanana’s Bakery, McKesson’s drug store—I can still remember all the names. The 35 Eureka and the “J” took us on great adventures!
I’m sure you’re a wonderful asset to the neighborhood!!! Sorry you’re leaving whip up. It was fun to read!


2 carla Pessoa June 16, 2006 at 6:26 pm

Thanks, for all the words and advices.
See you with a bird in the hand :)


3 Heels June 16, 2006 at 8:44 pm

Lisa, I think you’re a true artist and I have enjoyed your posts here and on your blog. Your talent delights and amazes me.


4 Maritza June 16, 2006 at 11:15 pm

Oh no! I’m so sad to see you go. I will miss your posts on whip-up, Lisa. You are a tremendous source of inspiration. I hope that you do continue blogging and look forward to seeing all of your future creative endeavors. Your work is truly beautiful.


5 MaryBeth June 18, 2006 at 1:55 pm

You a re a source of such divine inspiration. I didnt know you are Self taught-always an added inspiration for midlife creatives like myself.
Your package goes to post Monday.
Of course i will be following your journey on your blog.
MB in JT


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