Sunday, February 15, 2009

getting to know you #6

please tell us who you are, and a bit about your business/art.
My name is Kristen Chick and I am a printmaker living in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle. My two favorite printmaking techniques are linoleum and Gocco. In addition to selling my paper goods on etsy, I do a lot of custom work such as wedding invitations, baby announcements, pet portraits and advertising for local businesses. I just launched a new version of my website with more about what I do!

describe your creative/creating process.

I am most inspired by plants and animals. I usually start with a photograph, either one I take or one I find. Then I sketch, then I scan, then I Photoshop, then I transfer (or carve, depending on the medium) then I print. For my linoleum prints, I either hand print with mounted linoleum or use my mini-press with unmounted linoleum. Gocco is a Japanese silk screening system that has spawned a huge following, and yet is possibly going the way of Polaroid: obsolescence. I can and will switch over to more conventional silk screening if Gocco supplies go away completely. But I love the way Gocco allows me to add a variety of color to a single screen. There is nothing quite like it.

what are your favorite places to shop (both on and off etsy)?

On Etsy:
I lovingly curate my “favorites”… the items list. There are so many beautiful things to see, and somehow they all seem to go together so beautifully. Two of my favorite etsy artists are mamabetsy (I own several of her pieces and wear one particular bracelet regularly) and rozssaxseattle (I have a fancy scarf of hers with a crocheted flower on it that ALWAYS gets me compliments!)

Off Etsy:
Daniel Smith – we Seattleites are so lucky to have this art supply store in our city. They are big enough to have almost everything but small enough to care.
Uwajimaya – this is an Asian grocery store chain in the Northwest. Not only can you get interesting ramens, the freshest bok choy, and delicious lunches there, but they also have a bookstore with cool Japanese pens and irresistible papers.

how do you describe your personal style?
I invented a word to describe the style of my home: Ikeaclectic.
Personally, I try to look like a creative, artistic professional without being the wacky lady in the crazy homemade hat. Sometimes it’s a fine line…

what is your top piece of advice for someone trying to run their own business?
Get good advice but filter it well: don’t substitute anyone else's judgment for your own.

name five things that are a constant in your daily routine.
1. Coffee is an essential morning kick-starter.
2. Newspaper: I prefer the old-school kind that you can read without a screen.
3. I draw or doodle or print something every day.
4. I do the New York Times crossword puzzle every day (Saturday trips me up sometimes though.)
5. Flossing. For real.

what is your ideal day?
I’m not sure exactly the storyline, but it would involve a boat, popcorn, my boyfriend, my kittycat, printing, being outside, a little sunshine, a little rain, adventures, swimming, reading, drawing and root beer. And then it would probably end up at The Tin Hat, my favorite neighborhood dive. With Elvis Costello. And Bob Dylan.

tell us something about yourself that we might find surprising.

I was once a white water rafting guide on the Colorado River.

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