Monday, 16 April 2018

Nature inspired - join in the latest photochallenge

Sarah Becvar of Sarah Becvar Design is my collab for the next adi & bert  photo challenge on Instagram. Sarah, a textile trained artist, creates fabric art - beautifully freehand machine embroidered, with simple nature-inspired forms.

Read below about what inspires Sarah to create such lovely designs and to find out about her creative process. Sarah also shares some tips for selling and online web design.

1. Sarah, have you always been interested in creating and what inspired you to sew using botanical/nature based themes? 

SB: I grew up on a dairy farm, surrounded by acres of beautiful Sussex countryside, orchards, farm animals and plenty of wildlife!  As a child I would gather handfuls of items that I’d collect from my surroundings such as leaves, shells, tree bark and plenty of flowers, and from an early age I would sketch them or make collages of my nature finds. 

 2. What artists inspire you and why? 

SB: My inspiration still comes from my natural surroundings. I often refer to my old botanical guide books to identify flowers, but also love studying the botanical drawings and the aged, muted colours. I was fortunate to find Sketches For The Flora which is a volume of field sketches by W. Keble Martin (published in 1972) to which I refer. His simple line drawings give clarity to the form of the flower I may be drawing. 

3. How do you stay focused when you are building up stock for your website or a market? 

SB: I enjoy each step of the construction of my products whether it’s a greetings card, bag or artwork and it gives me great pleasure to hear the lovely feedback from my customers which encourages me and keeps me engaged.

4. For someone's starting down the track of selling art and crafts, what is the best piece of advice you could give?

SB: Some advice to someone who’s in the early stages of selling their work would be to have confidence and belief in their product. I prefer to give a brief description of how I make the product as I feel it’s important to explain that the item is handmade, and it gives the product a ‘story’. 

5. What tips do you have for crafters/artists setting up a website or selling online?

SB: I designed and constructed my own website which has been an enormous learning curve, but I have fulfilled my brief of a site that is clear, simple and sophisticated with ease of navigation. It is the product that needs to stand out with a clear call to action. Keep things simple in a style that reflects your work. 

6. What are you happiest doing creatively and why?

SB: I am at my happiest creating a new piece of work, from its initial sketches through to drawing it in thread on my sewing machine. I often sew straight onto the fabric without drawing the design onto the fabric first, and find this incredibly exciting! Seeing the lines of stitches appear before you, forming an image on a blank canvas, is a wonderful feeling. 

7. Where would you like to be creatively in five years' time? 

SB: I hope to run freehand machine embroidery workshops where I’d love to teach my processes and encourage people to try freehand machine embroidery themselves. As I have a background in textile design I’d like to design more fabrics which incorporate my sketches and have discussed publishing a book using images of my freehand embroidery. I feel so fortunate that I enjoy what I do and am surrounded by a constant source of inspiration enabling my creativity to have a constant flow. 

Thank you, Sarah!

To celebrate Sarah's charming work, Sarah and I would love you to join us in a photo challenge on Instagram and the theme is nature!

Sarah is offering a beautifully embroidered shopping bag and hand made card to the winner and two runner’s up will each receive one of her enchanting sewn cards.

Be sure to follow the rules, to be eligible:

1. On Instagram follow @sarahbecvardesign and @adiandbert 
2. Post a new photo with a nature theme, to the tag #ab_the_nature_series 
3. Invite a friend to join

Comp close on 30 April and is open worldwide.

Sarah will select the winners.

Have fun and we look forward to seeing your entries!

Claudia x

Photo Credits: Sarah Becvar