Hi everyone! For my second featured blogger I have chosen CAPow aka Crystal. She has a great blog as well as great inventory in her Etsy shop. Everything from clutches to some great graphic prints. Here is an interview with Crystal and make sure you show her blog and shop some love!
A Little About Yourself?:
My name is Crystal A Powell, currently I'm based out of Albany NY, but have spent several years living in both Boston MA, and Brooklyn NY. I helped start a very active local etsy team called Capital Region Etsy Whizzes (or CREW).
Other than creating things for Etsy, what do you do?
I have both a full time office job, and I work in the grooming salon at a local pet store part time. When I'm not working at either job, I am constantly working on creative things. Sometimes I feel like a crafting shark: if I don't keep constantly working on something creative, I will die. And on the rare occasion that I'm not working on things, I'm either at the gym or on the couch cuddling with my 2 cats, Styles and Miyagi.
What first made you want to become an artist?
My mother. She grew up on a farm and learned to sew, knit, crochet, & embroider from my grandmother. She's made things her entire life, in addition to all of those things she's also a painter. So that's probably where I get my varied interests from. When I was in elementary school, she taught me how to crochet and sew, and I would make things while watching TV with my siblings. She also enrolled me in 4-H, where I learned even more creative skills. When I reached high school, I asked her to teach me how to knit, but it never caught my attention.
Describe your creative process and the materials you use:
That despends on what I'm making, let me break it down into 3 major catagories.
When I sew, I basically have a few patterns memorized that I use to make wallets. I almost exclusively use cotton fabrics, and fusable interfacing is my best friend.
When I paint, I usually draw out my painting on the canvas first, then paint in strictly acrylics.
When I photograph, I have previously been using either kodak or sony point and shoot digital cameras, every once in a while shooting 35mm black and white film with my vintage SLR. But thanks to a great night at the casino a few weeks ago, I recently bought my first Canon manual control digital SLR, and I am SUPER psyched to start shooting with that!
What handmade possession to you prize the most?
When I was ver young, so young I can't even remember how old I was, I really liked Curious George, so my mom found a pattern, and crocheted me a monkey doll. I still have it to this day, and I love it.
Top 5 websites you visit besides Etsy?
Any advice you have for new Etsy users:
I think you should stick to making things that YOU love, not things that are trendy. If you stay true to the things that you love to make, there will be people out there who have similar taste, and it might take a little work, but they will find you eventually.
Other than that, post in forums, keep a blog, get social with your fellow etsy users, they will always be your best customers, and your biggest supporters!
What are your favorite features of Etsy, and what new features would you like to see?
I think the treasury is a genius idea, but what I would really like is a better notification system. It would be nice to automatically get an email if your item is in a treasury, or featured on the front page, or in the realted items in a storque article.
How do you promote your shop/work?
I have a blog (http://capow1981.blogspot.com), I twitter (http://twitter.com/capowcapow), I post images on flickr (http://www.flickr.com/crystalcakes), I post in etsy forums, I post on craftster.org. I also promote through being a member of a few etsy teams. I also have items in locally owned small businesses and galleries.
In ten years, where would you like to be?
I would like to be making a living solely off my art, whether that be through galleries and etsy, and a freelancer, or working as a designer for a company. As long as I am able to spend my days being creative, that is what will keep me happy.
Wanna Be Featured Like CAPow!? Shoot me a convo on Etsy!