Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday's Featured Fabricator--Pretty {much} Art




This week's featured Moo Crew artist is Stephanie, who is the proprietress, along with her mom, of Pretty {much} Art.  Stephanie is the creator of Pretty {much} Art and one half of the Pretty {much} Art team. Currently residing in the small town of Spencer, Wisconsin, she graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in 2008 with a BFA in graphic design.


"Pretty {much} Art sells digital prints (all completely one-of-a-kind; each print is only printed once) and stationery; all illustrated and designed by myself; 'the artist/daughter'.  I call my work "digital art" because it's mostly done on the computer. I design the pictures using hand-drawn illustrations I scanned into the computer and manipulated in Photoshop.  The artwork is also applied to coasters, magnets, tray and glass pendants, scrabble tile pendants, bottle cap pendants and rings all handcrafted by my mom, Theresa; "the crafter/mother". She's the other half of Pretty {much} Art."


The name of the business arose out of a difficulty in explaining the processes used to create Stephanie's pieces.  "When I first started this business, I had a really hard time explaining to people just what it was I did. It'd say something like this, "It's digital art. It's illustration, it's modern and slightly abstract, inspired by printmaking and collage work. It's pretty and it's art...pretty much."


Pretty {much} Art began, well...pretty much...as many artists have their beginnings.  "I’ve always loved to draw and have been an illustrator my entire life. In the summer of ’08 I took my love for drawing and joined it with my new knowledge of graphic design, creating 'digital art'. I think my art is a marriage of my creative, disorganized side with my analytical side."


Stephanie's very first items graced the walls in her parents' house. "My parents were in the process of re-decorating their bedroom the summer I moved back home from college. At a loss for what they should do for artwork, they asked me to create something for their bare walls. I had just bought a new MacBook Pro and was fresh from 4 years of learning how to design, so I went to work. They loved the pieces I created and we decided I should try to sell my creations."


Stephanie's process is a combination of technology and handcraft.  "My artwork is digital, but it's also very handmade. My work starts out as hand-drawn illustrations - pen to paper. After I scan in my drawings I utilize the computer to achieve the look I'm going for. I use the computer to compose the layout and add the color. This allows me to easily make customizable prints - change the color, add a particular flower or some other design...I love making my prints personalized.  We also pride ourselves on our unique coaster sets. Our handmade coasters (crafted with the utmost care) come in sets of four that, when laid together, create a full picture. I've heard people call them 'puzzle coasters'. We call them 'artwork for your table'. And they're fun! Our magnets are the same...we call those 'artwork for your fridge'."


brown dragonfly 1 magnets (FP) (set of 4) yellow spring ORIGINAL ART print bright red / yellow funky magnets (FP) (set of 4)


Stephanie and her mom want their customers to know that theirs is a labor of love.  "All of our creations are made with love. That sounds like SUCH a cliche, but it's true. Especially in the case of our hand-crafted coasters, magnets and pendants. My mom puts such care into what she does. Her patience, attention to detail and hard work just amaze me. I'm so glad she's taking on this little business venture with me."


I asked Stephanie what she does at times other than the creative ones.  "When I'm not creating, I'm blogging (prettymuchart.blogspot.com), reading, or (if I'm being honest) I'm on facebook or watching TV. Oh, and actually I have a full-time graphic design job at a print shop. That keeps me pretty busy."


Stephanie is also an aspiring writer.  "My dream job (besides being a graphic designer/artist) would be to be a writer. I'd like to write a novel someday. Also, that I've diagnosed myself with eldaphopia - the fear of large birds."


For Stephanie, the best part of being an artist is that it creates a place to focus my energy.  "At the same time, it feels freeing. There's a feeling of having 'no rules' sometimes. I love that feeling. And I love getting done with a piece and feeling proud of it."


Pretty {much} Art can be found at craft shows throughout the state. Here's a list of their upcoming shows : prettymuchart.com/upcomingshows.html  And of course you can find mom and daughter on Etsy at http://www.etsy.com/shop/PrettyMuchArt?ref=pr_shop_more


Many thanks to Stephanie...and mom!