Tell us a bit about yourself.
Hello! I'm Mary, I was born and raised in Newburgh, NY, lived in Albany, NY for a few years and am happily living back in Newburgh. I consider myself a very lucky girl. I recently got married "to a saint" as my family says, have a very supportive family, couldn't love my friends more and am hell bent on living on what I love. Crafting, designing and creating, that is. :)
I'm known on etsy and professionally as Stelladottie. I believe everyone deserves some fun, and that's what I create. I make it FUN, whether it's sewn, stuffed, cut, pasted or thrown. I love bright colors, simple patterns, solid design, sharp lines and creating things people love. In years to come I hope to be doing the same thing I am now, but on a much higher level.
A BA in Art, hope and determination :)
What led you to your current craft?
I am a potter at heart. Ceramics is my "thing". I have and still do love all types of art and craft, but I was lucky to have ceramic classes offered in my high school and that's where I simply fell head over heels. It was if I finally found my true art calling. When I moved onto college, for my first two years, I was in a liberal arts and humanities program. I still took all the art classes they had to offer, but when I transfered to my next school I thought it was time to get a "real" career major. So I was a Childhood Education major for a semester, but when I found out they had an art program with ceramics, I could go no further! I quickly changed programs and ended up with a BA in Art/3D studio. Then I didn't know what to do. So I went home and worked at a daycare for a year, then went back to school to get my Master's in Art Education. That lasted a year. I did well, but had a gnawing feeling this wasn't what I really wanted to do. After a couple years of daycare, retail, crying, and pouting, I realized I wouldn't be happy doing "someone's else's job". So I am (with the help of supportive others!) throwing myself into full-time crafting. It's an everyday challenge just to fight myself to do it, but I am determined and working on it everyday! A lot of "I CAN DO IT" chanting goes on. ANYWAYS....my current craft is sewing pillows and things. To fully do ceramics you need money and space, with I have neither of, so I took up sewing in it's place. I also have been known to make papergoods, but they are tedious and time consuming, so sewing it is, and I'm beginning to enjoy it. :)
How do you feed your creativity?
Keep my eyes open for inspiration, sketch concepts and designs, go to craft stores, go through my supplies, books, etsy, and coffee. :) I've also started doing yoga in the morning and I'm working on drinking more water and going back to the gym! :) Anything helps! I take great inspiration from Jim Henson's determination, extraordinary visual craft, wonderful sense of whimsy and philanthropy. I live by his quote - "My hope is to leave the world a little better for having been there."
How do you work deal with a creative block?
You can find inspiration in everything. I'll opt for a change of scenery, surf the web, watch TV, call my friends, or look through books and magazines. But I usually turn to my sketches. Anytime an idea pops in my head, I draw or write it down. I also started compiling a binder of magazine, book, and web images I find inspirational.
Describe your work area.
It's my dining room table with (supply-filled) storage items around it :)
Favorite time of day to work?
I'm definitely a night owl, but if I get myself up, I like to work in the morning and also enjoy the late afternoon. Most of my ideas come at night.
How did you end up on Etsy?
My sister! I've been a member since 2006. She's a "cool" librarian and one of those people who are great at finding things online. She told me I should make a shop, so I did.
Other than your supplies & materials, what do you want with you on a stranded island?
My family and friends - for help, fun and comic relief! But if I was really stranded - sunblock, snacks, and a pillow! :)
Any guilty pleasures?
Reality TV! Real Housewives, Teen Mom, Jersey Shore, Intervention, etc.
Words of wisdom for aspiring artists?
My sister gave me a birthday card, and it said this - Always remember your brilliance (Alexandra Stoddard) I am trying harder everyday to remember this, stay positive, and work as hard as I can.