We are Chorley Contemporary Crafters ..... with an ‘s’...... so I said to myself “Nik, it might be nice to hear from other crafters in our group right about now”.
So without further ado let me introduce our first clever crafter:
Bird House Press (by Rachel Jones)
Please give us a little detail about what it is you make? My work is mainly screen prints, based on the illustrations that I doodle. I love birds - so there is always one or two of them in the work I do! I produce my work either as prints that can be framed - or as limited edition tote bags, greetings cards, and for 2012 - notebooks!! I also have letterpress prints and lino prints as well - but the focus is screen printing!
Have you always done this or did you first start with something else? I have only been screen printing for just under 2 years - so I am still learning. I love the process - and love trying new ideas. Not all of them have worked - but I love trying anyway!!
What / who inspires you? I love the screen prints of Jay Ryan - and the Papercuts of Rob Ryan (neither are related - just coincidence!) I have tried paper cuts - but end up cutting my fingers far too often - so some of my more recent prints have a papercut "look" to them without me having to buy stocks of Elastoplast in the process!!
Is there an interesting back story/start up story to your business? I am still working full time for a local council - so my artwork is done in any spare time, weekends and days off! Initially when I started screen printing - I was working out of my garage - and with it being separate to my house - there is no electricity, no water, and in winter - no heat! So the fact I stuck with the printing is a good sign that I like it!! Thankfully - I was able to get a studio space at Hot Bed Press, Salford (http://www.hotbedpress.org/) in 2011, so printing is less of a challenge - and more like the fun it should be!
Tell us what we can typically find when visiting your stall? There are prints that can be framed, greetings cards, tote bags, I am planning on a range of notebooks this year - and I have even had some designs put onto plates - so the range is varied! I will be at the next Chorley Contemporary Crafters Art Fair on the 5th of February (10am – 4pm at The Coach House, next to Café Ambio, in Astley Park) - so please pop down and check out my work in person!!
Do you have a favourite item? This has to be a print I finished around August time 2011. The design is inspired by papercuts - but the sentiment is something that I feel is applicable to young and old - my "Shine" screen print. It was printed as an edition of 20 - and I have just sold the last one on New Years Eve. I still have people asking for it - so I think there will be a second edition of it in 2012!
Do you have a website or somewhere we can have a nosey at / purchase your products? oooh yes - head over to http://www.birdhousepress.co.uk, find me on facebook (www.facebook.com/BirdHousePress) and find me on Twitter @BirdHousePress (I have no understanding of twitter, sorry guys you will have to get here yourselves, Nik x). I also have shops on Folksy www.folksy.com and Etsy www.etsy.com (search Bird House Press in the shop search) I also have a blog too: http://birdhousepress.blogspot.com/
Any big plans for the future of your business? For 2012 I need to update my website and incorporate a shop into my site too. I also plan to focus on my online shops, and perhaps get my work into a few shops locally too. Not particularly massive plans but I am sure with the day job to do as well - they will keep me busy!!!
One last picture
- my most recent screen print - "The World" - initially commissioned by a friend as an engagement gift (which was personalised with names, place they got engaged, and the date) - this is the main part of that design.
Keep a look out for our next Contemporary Crafter soon.
Bye for now.