Monday, June 8, 2009
Today marks another installment of my Monday blog series titled Monday Must-Have. Each Monday I will feature a fellow talented Etsian and their phenomenal work. Each featured artist will have their own online Etsy shop where you can peruse and admire their one-of-a-kind body of work. Hopefully you will find new favorite artists and artisans whose work you MUST HAVE. :)
Today's featured artist is Amanda of SpawnStudio.
Who are you (actual name/and or shop name)?
I am Amanda Wright—the creative brains behind Spawn Studio.
What do you create?
For now, I create greeting cards and stationery. However, I have a basement full of paints, canvases, screen printing supplies, a sewing machine, and jewelry making supplies. So, I am planning to branch out in the future!
Where are you located?
I am located in Cary, North Carolina in our super cool 1971 A-frame house with my husband, Daniel, and our two schnauzer-poodle mix pups, Oliver and Mabel. More specifically Spawn Studio is located in the basement.
When did you start creating?
I started creating shortly after I popped into the world—usually with crayons or finger paint. I've known I wanted to be an artist of some sort since I was 6 years old. Nothing beats the feeling you get when you make something you are proud of. I took art classes throughout school, and in high school I sat with Ruth of Allover Art in art class for 3 years! I went to college at the NC State College of Design and loved every minute of it. I got my Bachelor of Graphic Design degree in 2006 and started working at a design firm. Unfortunately designing marketing pieces and websites didn't give me much creative freedom, so Spawn Studio was born!
Why did you choose your shop name?
Ah, my shop name. I decided I wanted to start my own business, but a year and a half later I was still trying to think of a name! I am such a perfectionist that I got completely caught up on finding the right name and I couldn't move forward. Finally, my husband suggested that I start working on some products for my shop and stop worrying about the name. (Sometimes he's a pretty smart fellow.) As I brainstormed, ideas for my shop exploded out of my head, and those ideas led to other ideas, and those ideas spawned other ideas and on and on. So "Spawn" seemed to be an appropriate name for my studio!
What inspires you?
I am inspired by everything I see and anything that makes me laugh, but I truly believe that inspiration comes from God. I don't think I could come up with anything good on my own!
What is the most time consuming part of your craft/art?
The most time consuming part of my work is developing the illustrations/designs for each piece. But, this is the fun part of the process so I don't mind it at all! I like to do it curled up on the couch between my dogs with a good old black and white movie playing in the background. I don't particularly enjoy the printing/scoring/folding/trimming part of the process, so sometimes that seems to be the most time consuming even though it isn't.
What is your favorite place to visit in your hometown and why?
There aren't too many interesting places to visit in Raleigh/Cary, NC so I suppose my favorite place to visit is my parents' house! My Mom always makes my husband and I a delicious meal with a scrumptious dessert. After the meal we nap on the couch and maybe play a board game or two. Hmm. I must be getting old—board games and a nap?!
What is your most popular item that you create (and why do you think it is so popular)?
So far, my most popular item (based on number of purchases) has been the "Happy Valentine's Day from my Boobs" card. I think it's popular because it's different than any card you can pick up at Hallmark or Target...and hey, there are boobs on the front.
How do you acquire new clients?
I acquire new clients through word of keyboard!
What's your next project going to be?
The next project on my to do list is to get my website and blog up and running by the end of June. (The url will be www.spawnstudio.com) My perfectionism is getting in the way again, and I need to just build it and get going instead of obsessing over the design!
My other next projects will be invitations of all sorts! Wedding, Wedding Shower, Baby Shower, Surprise Party, etc...
Oh, and my OTHER next project will be to do a painting a 4' x 3' canvas to hang in our living room. But, it's hard to get away from the computer—I need my "undo" button!
What types of things do you do to turn first time buyers into repeat clients?
First of all I try to make sure that my product is super high quality, so that no one could ever be disappointed with their purchase. I also include handwritten thank you notes with each shipment and email updates with tracking information for orders shipping within the US. As someone who buys almost everything online, I know that tracking information is very important. I also hope that by consistently adding new items to my shop I can persuade buyers to come back for more!
What do you do when you are not creating?
When I'm not creating I am working on updating our home. Old people lived here before us and the 70's flowered wall paper and brass light fixtures have to go. I think interior design is kind of like graphic design in 3D! I also enjoy wrestling with my dogs and playing xbox with my husband. This spring I am going to spend a lot of time gardening and trying to whip our yard into shape. Right now it is a tangle of ivy and underbrush!
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I just listed a few Father's Day cards, so check them out! Father's Day is June 21st!
Be sure to check out Amanda's GREAT cards (I'm a repeat customer myself) in her Etsy shop. If you're interested in being featured in future Monday Must-Have segments, please feel free to convo me in my Etsy shop or email me. Have a wonderful day!