Tuesday, January 11

Creating a Concept...

A new year and a new list of great artisans to feature. Bringing you guys the artist has to be a highlight of my days. I love seeking out new talent and hearing how they came to be the incredible artist they are. As always there is so much more to art than meets the eye and I hope my interviews can bring some of the unseen to the forefront and we can really get to know the great folks behind this great art.

Great art from around the world. Today’s artist Alex heralds all the way from Milan. Here in Alex’s own words is the interview!

Creative Concepts:

Can you tell me your name and a little about yourself and your studio/creative space?

My name is Alex. I am originally from Milan, Italy, where I studied Arts and Design, and also worked as textile designer before moving to the United States. I’ve lived in California for many years. For the past ten years I have worked in various US cities as interior and graphic designer. However my main passion remains decorative arts, which I’ve been pursuing for the past several years on a part-time basis.

My art is a fusion of ideas I like to experiment with new techniques and mediums. I paint on paper, fabric, canvas, cork and wood with acrylic paint, gouache and/or watercolor. I use images from my original paintings for my greeting cards and prints and I sell them through local stores and also through online shops like Bonanza.com (creativeconceptsds). I also make hand made crafts and felt ornaments. Starting January 2011 I’ll be opening another e-store on Etsy.com, that will be featuring my arts and crafts as well as vintage and felt accessories.

I also illustrate children’s books and in collaboration with my husband, we published our first book titled: “The Adventures of Mr. P, the Case of the Missing Cheese” by Let Me Do It Press, a whimsical full-color publication for ages 2-8 years. It’s now featured on Bonanza (mrpadventure), Etsy (mrpadventures) and Amazon (The Adventures of Mr.P). The book is getting very good reviews from all around! We’re now working on two new books that will be published sometime in 2011

Where do you live and what is it like?

I live near Santa Cruz, California but I often travel back and forth to Europe/Italy and Seattle, Washington, where I have also an art studio. My travels tend to influence my art and inspire me to explore new ideas.

Where did you learn your medium?
I started painting when I was only five years old. My aunt was an artist and taught me how to use a brush and tempera (a type of opaque watercolor). I then helped her paint a colorful mural when I was 6-7 years old…it was so much fun! I also went to art school where I learned more techniques and studied art history. Later on I worked as textile, graphic and interior designer, which gave me a solid technical experience in addition to a better understanding of design and arts & crafts. I always loved to work with my hands, create pretty things and make people smile a little.

What are your goals with your work?
At the moment I am planning to get some of my designs licensed out to retail companies and/or go wholesale. I’ll be launching a new website in January 2011 through wholesalecraft.com.


 How did you come to selling online?
A friend of mine told me about Etsy.com and through the Etsy’s forums I found out about 1000Markets.com (now known as Bonanza.com). It became a fun part-time alternative activity

Where all do you sell?

Bonanza.com (creativeconceptsds and mrpadventures)
Etsy.com (mrpadventures)
Amazon.com (The Adventures of Mr.P, The Case of the Missing Cheese)
Local stores around Santa Cruz and Santa Cruz (http://www.bookshopsantacruz.com)
Local fairs

What is the best piece of advice you can give other artists?

Be curious about life and art, appreciate the good work of others and learn from them. Create a “design mind” by observing what’s out there or around you: shops, people, nature, places, museums, books, local art programs, you name it! I think one should never stop trying to improve and explore new avenues or ideas. But the joy of creating seems to me above anything else.


Why do you think that buying and selling handmade products benefits society?

Handmade is a celebration of both the artisan/artist and their dreams. I believe they profoundly contribute to create a better world for everyone.

Your shop name and link?


Thanks for reading about Alex. I hope you take the time to visit some of the stores and see more work from this great artisan! Remember I love hearing from you all, so please drop me a note. If you know of any great artist that need to be featured, pass them on!


Until next time...