2012 Calendar Profiles: February + November

by kath_red on 27/11/2011

in People

Profiling the work of the lovely featured artists/makers in the 2012 Whipup.net calendar. I asked all the participants a few questions…

Teri Dimalanta is from the USA, her favourite craft is Papier Mache, she blogs at Giddygiddy. She is our February Calendar girl.

1. Main craft/ design influences:

I am inspired by the modern and iconic graphic designs of the 50’s. My favorite designers are Celestino Piatti, Paul Rand and Saul Bass, just to name a few. I am also inspired by two of my most favorite modern artists, Alexander Calder and Joan Miro. Contemporary fashion design is also another area that totally captivates me. At the moment, I am intrigued by the immensely innovative Hussein Chalayan.

Teri's creative space

Projects: Wooden quilt :: Papier mache wall hooks

2. Need to make things:

I have vivid memories of my childhood art classes. Like most children, I saw infinite possibilities in something as simple as an egg carton, or a paper cup. Nothing gave me more satisfaction or bliss as transforming art supplies into objects of my imagination.

Fast forward into adulthood, I settled into a comfortable career in finance; I had nearly forgotten what making things with my hands was like. I think having children reminded me of my inner child and I suddenly wanted my life to be about creativity, play and experimentation. Now I carve out time to fulfill my creative urges and won’t allow myself to shelve ideas for very long. The more creatively I live, the more creative I become which is all the more reason to make as often as possible.

3. Resources:

Here in the San Francisco Bay Area, we are so fortunate to have “reuse centers” where people/companies can donate unwanted artist and industrial supplies, reusable materials, paper, fabric, and general odds and ends. These items are then sold for a fraction of its original value. This idea is a total win win as it diverts perfectly reusable materials away from landfills and into the hands of artists, schools, crafters, etc. This resource has allowed me to fuel my various creative endeavors on the cheap. Now if you want to pin me down to name just one tool I couldn’t do without… that would be sticky tape.

4. Music: I listen to different types of music – but gravitate toward upbeat old school music. These days, I have Queen classics on a loop.

5. Creative block:

For me, it is no use fighting a creative block. Experience has taught me that when i give in to it, i can consider it necessary and forced downtime. It is no use to fight it. I try to rest, do nothing, or perhaps do something unambitious like doodling. Inevitably i am back to experiencing quite the opposite problem: too many ideas and not enough time to execute them all.

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Chawne is from the USA, she blogs at Completely Cauchy, and she is a Multi-Craftual Quilter, she is our Cover and November Calendar girl.

1. Name your three main craft/design influences?

For color ambition and improvisational patchwork: Malka Dubrawsky

In this same vein, one must also mention Nancy Crow and Anna Williams.

For embroidery irreverence and technical aspiration, I am inspired by all the great artists featured on Mr X Stitch.

2. Why do you feel the need/drive to make things?

I come from a long ancestry of makers of things: farmers, carpenters, cooks, sewists, and hobbyists, so the value of handwork was instilled in me from birth. At a young age I was learned to cross stitch from my godmother. What was unusual was the exacting standards she taught and re-taught me from the beginning and, to this day, my attention to detail in everything that I do is enforced by her gentle encouraging voice in my head. And I guess I keep making things both to practice new skills and to have an outlet for expressing myself in ways that might otherwise be taboo.

Chawne is a Multi-Craftual Quilter

Chawne's work space

3. What is your favourite crafty resource:

By far, Ravelry is the best thing that ever happened for knitters and crocheters. I value the site most because now we get to explore the diverse ways that crafters worldwide interpret similar patterns and how some others are pressing the boundaries of what is possible to do with yarn. I never visit Ravelry without learning something new and/or challenging one of my own long-held notions about colors, textures or techniques.

A close second is Flickr. Because I pursue several different crafts, it can be difficult to visit all the main gathering points for all of them. However, Flickr is a lovely place to share your work—in any visual genre, get advice and encourage the amazing work that others are doing.

4. What music inspires you to create?

Hmm…I wouldn’t consider music to be an inspiration of my work. Currently I am most inspired by other texts like poems, novels, television shows and social media. While I work, I tend to listen to podcasts of public broadcasting shows like This American Life and Selected Shorts and those can spark new ideas from time to time.

5. What do you do when you have a creative block?

Oftentimes I just have to find a way to open up to new-to-me ideas and those are best explored by attending public academic lectures, talking to my friends who themselves are experts in various fields of discourse, and diving into a stack of books on an unexpected topic. Lately mountaineering is on my mind, for example. I’ll likely never do anything practical with all this mountaineering learning, but there is something fascinating about WHY climbers climb and studying that aspect has been transformative.

If that doesn’t work, then it’s always fun to explore what’s new in the world of branding and packaging design as illustrated on The Dieline.

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