Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Member Spotlight - Dick and Franny
Name: Francesca (Cecca) Whetnall
What kind of things do you make?
I mainly paint watercolours, but I also like to try mixed media and collage. My subjects range from flowers to landscapes to architecture.
I also love making jewellery, chunky charm bracelets, funky and colourful earrings and elegant necklaces.
I love the variety of making something different every time I get the urge!
How long have you been doing your craft?
I've been painting and drawing ever since I was old enough to hold a pencil. I got interested in jewellery at a very early age too,
I remember making beads from paper and cotton buds (I think that's Q-Tips in American?) when I was 8 or 9.
When did you start selling & what inspired you to start selling?
I was commissioned to paint a vase of flowers when I was about 15. That probably got me interested in selling my work.
But it wasn't until 4 or 5 years ago that I started exhibiting my art.
I've always loved painting and creating, so if there is a way for me to earn a living doing the thing I love then it's worth a shot!
Is this your full time job?
Sadly no. I work almost full time as an IT developer.
Just over a year ago I dropped down to a 9 day fortnight so that I could have that little bit of extra time to spend on my Art.
It's so difficult finding time to create as well as enough time to try to market my shop sites and learn more about the business side of running an Art and Craft business.
I'm still a long way off making any money, but I learn something new every day!
What are your hobbies?
I have loads of art and craft hobbies - as well as painting, collage and jewellery making I also love pottery, patchwork, model making and mosaic making.
My non crafting hobbies include reading, walking, rowing, cinema, playing football and badminton and photography.
What is your favorite color?
I love blues - the brighter, the better.
What is your favorite color combination?
At the moment it's probably bottle blue and sunshine yellow.
Which colors do you use most in your work?
Prussian blue is my favourite colour to paint with. I have trouble keeping it out of my watercolours!
What is your number 1 tip for success?
I'm still waiting to learn that myself!
I have been reading a fantastic book recently - 'Outliers' by Malcolm Gladwell. It's all about how successful people haven't made it purely on their own talents.
There are lots of factors that contribute to success including being in the right place at the right time, being part of a community (CIC!), have a hardworking cultural ethic.
One of the key factors that I definitely need to work on is that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert in something (which is 8 hours a day for 10 years!).
I think it comes out in a lot of the Etsy 'Quit your day job' articles, that the success stories are all working very, very hard on their businesses.
What do you think is the most fun way to promote?
I'm a big fan of Twitter. I only started using it recently, but it's a great quick way of pointing out interesting articles and showing off your latest creations.
My Twitter page is http://twitter.com/CeccaArt