Something Special: Stephanie Levy
Stephanie Levy from Germany is one of our participants this month at our Home Sweet Home market and her beautiful work couldn't be more fitting to the theme. I'm loving her brand new, "tiny city series"(featuring internationally inspired interiors). The colors and textures really are stunning. Each one is a handmade original and these pieces are perfect if you wish to start collecting art as they start at such an affordable price point. On her blog, she runs a series called, Artists Who Blog, so we asked her if we could interview her as an artist who blogs. She politely accepted. You can see more of Stephanie's work here and here. And one more thing, it's her birthday today! Here's her interview:
Stephanie Levy : Artist who blogs
Why did you decide to start a blog?
At the beginning of 2007 I took a HTML class so that I could create and maintain my own website portfolio (http://www.stephanielevy.com). I started looking around the web at other artist websites, and I googled some of the people I studied with at art school. One of whom is Anna Maria Horner (http://www.annamariahorner.com). Anna Maria is an incredible textile designer who has 5! children and a vibrant, warm personal blog (http://www.annamariahorner.blogspot.com). Through contacts she made with her blog, she now has a book coming out in October 2008 - which I find very impressive. I started following the art and design links from her blog and a whole new world opened up for me! I wrote to a few of the blogs I found after my updated artist's portfolio was online, and interestingly enough, Poppytalk (http://www.poppytalk.blogspot.com/2007/07/stephanie-levy.html) was the very first blog to mention my website on July 18th, 2007! I am still grateful for that Jan :)
Soon afterwards, in September 2007, I gave birth to my second child and took a "maternity leave" for a few months. In April 2008, I was ready to get back into the groove again, and I opened my Etsy shop (http://www.stephanielevy.etsy.com), and started my own blog (http://www.stephanielevy.blogspot.com). I was simply inspired by the art and design blogs I had found, and I wanted to become a part of it all.
How has blogging effected your work as an artist/designer?
Blogging has helped me become more disciplined and really pushed me to become a more prolific artist. Sometimes I feel a bit overwhelmed trying to keep up with everything, but in the end I think the challenge is good for me. It is also wonderful to have so much immediate positive feedback on my artwork.
What are your favorite artist/designer blogs? Why?
I have so many favorites - just have a look at the art & design links on my blog! The Internet is full of beautiful work by talented artists, and I find lots of aesthetic inspiration on blogs. Some of my all time favorite blogging artists appear in my "artists who blog" interviews - and there are many more artists and designers who I hope to include in this series. I have had several positive responses for upcoming interviews, so please stay tuned. This week I featured Heather Smith Jones (http://stephanielevy.blogspot.com/2008/07/heather-smith-jones-artists-who-blog.html), and next week's interview will be with Heather Moore, otherwise known as Skinny laMinx (www.skinnylaminx.com).
Why do you think blogs have now become so popular with artists and designers?
The Internet is a very visual medium, and through blogs one can get a good overview quickly as to what is happening in the current art and design scene. I also think that people enjoy reading about and seeing what their favorite artists and designers are up to in their private lives. It can be voyeuristic, and it can be entertaining and inspiring. An artist's or designer's blog helps make them a "real" person to their public, you can share their ups and downs, offer your own advice or feedback - the interactive element is of course very important to the success of blogs.
Do you have any advice for artists/designers who are starting a blog?
Try to do something with your blog that everyone else is NOT doing. Make your blog as original, entertaining, and visual as possible. Find your own voice and follow your personal interests and direction. Decide what it is you want to communicate with others. Visit lots of other people's blogs, and invite them to visit yours. Encourage interaction, feedback, positive thinking, creativity. Have fun with it. Delight yourself, and others will be delighted too.
What has been the most positive and inspirational aspect of having a blog for you?
I have to answer this in the same way that most of the other "artists who blog" have answered: the best part has been making contacts with other artists and readers who are positive and supportive of my work. It is sometimes like having your own personal fan group to cheer you on. I am still amazed that we can all communicate with each other all over the world - for the most part instantly! How cool is that!
I have big hopes for the Internet in the future, especially for artists and designers, and think that we are just at the tip of the iceberg. On a global level, we are still the early pioneers of blogging. The art and design blog world is still a fairly small (and wonderful) community, and I believe that we will just grow and grow! I am very optimistic.
Thanks Jan for asking me to participate! Poppytalk is the best!
Thank you Stephanie and Happy Birthday!
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