West Medford Open Studios

I am excited to announce that I will be participating in this year's West Medford Open Studios!

I'll be participating with members of Boston Handmade at the event taking place Saturday April 30 and Sunday May 1 from noon to 5pm each day at 56 Bower Street in Medford. I am looking forward to showing among other talented artists in West Medford. I am particularly excited since I grew up in West Medford, so it will be nice to participate as an artist back where it all began twenty-something years ago!

Four members of Boston Handmade are fortunate to have a space in a vacant apartment on Bower Street right around the corner from the West Medford Fire Station off Harvard Ave. Balloons will mark all participating venues for the weekend. You can download a pdf map here.

Boston Handmade members include:

Allison of Fraske Designs
Sharon of Stray Notions
Karen of City by the Sea Ceramics
Lynne of Cozy Cottage Creations

I love Open Studios season and am looking forward to being a part of this event! Visit wmos.org for more information and for a list of other participating artists.

Interview with Evan of Evan Webster Ink

I had the pleasure of meeting Evan of Evan Webster Ink a few months ago through a mutual friend. Evan's company is an artisanal screen printing company that partners with its customers and collaborates with artists to realize the customer's needs. Curious about his work, I interviewed Evan about his process, his background, and what made him choose this path. Read on to learn more about Evan Webster Ink!

So, Evan... tell us about yourself.
My name is Evan Webster and I'm from Brookline, MA. I currently live in Brookline and anticipate staying in the Boston area area for a bit. The area has given me so much and I have a lot to give back to it. But it's cold here.
I have a background in Hispanic and Latino Studies - that's what I studied in college. I spent a formative year abroad in Argentina learning about others, myself and steak. I have two great parents and a little brother who goes by "Muffins".
While less important to who I am than my family, I have had jobs before. I worked at the CVS down the street when I was in high school. In that job I learned something that has been reinforced every moment since: it's hard to make money while keeping your sanity. During college I worked as a host at a tapas restaurant and started to be aware that communication matters as much as action. After college I worked in an office in Cambridge which to put to rest any aspirations of a traditional corporate life - most especially when they laid me off. I currently work at Evan Webster Ink where I'm learning creativity and empathy from the best teachers in the world.

What first made you want to become an artist?
Being an artist is merely something I've fallen into while trying to improve myself as a person. So I guess that means that becoming a better person first made me want to become an artist because artists create invaluable gifts.

What is the first thing you can remember making by hand? How and why did you make it?
The first thing I created by hand was probably a sand castle. I probably made it because I couldn't think of anything better to do with my hands. When I was small moving small objects like grains of sand was an exciting feat. Today it's equally impressive.

Describe your creative process.
The majority of my work is made by squeegeeing ink through stenciled mesh onto knit cotton. I do this every week and it's still interesting to me, amazingly.

Do you have any favorite color combinations?
Red, black and white or Blue, blue and orange.

What inspires you, and where do your ideas come from?
My ideas come from the desire to create solutions. I'm inspired by people who work for themselves along with space, the environment and libraries.

What is your biggest obstacle with your work?
My biggest obstacle with my work is my next idea.

What do you love most about what you make?
I love that they are completed. This to me is a great success. And it allows me to move on and pursue future successes.

What advice would you give to someone starting a small business?
Get customers first. Read what the experts say and then trust yourself more than anyone else.

Apart from creating things, what do you do?
This is a difficult question. Most of what I do is create. I'll change the question and ask myself  "Besides creating things professionally, what do you do?" Well, I like to hike and bike, ideally combined with cooking, hopefully with my girlfriend, friends or family. And I'm hoping this year to get better at swimming and to brew a batch of beer.

On to randomness... name some favorites - books, movies, songs/musical groups, etc!
My favorite series of books is The Golden Compass, favorite movie is The Usual Suspects and favorite website according to my Facebook profile is www.panna2.com - but it's gotten way worse since I originally put that in there.

Tell us something we don't know but SHOULD know about you!
I don't think anyone should know how bad I am at singing. If you ask to hear me sing I will refrain out of concerns for your safety.

Thanks to Evan for sharing some background about Evan Webster Ink!
Visit the following links to learn more:
website: www.evanwebsterink.com
blog: http://www.evanwebsterink.com/blog/
facebook: http://www.facebook.com/evanwebsterink
twitter: http://twitter.com/evanwebsterink

Happy Record Store Day!

Today, April 16, is National Record Store Day.

This paper record player invitation has great timing for going viral on the internet this week... check out this project by Kelli Anderson:

Learn more about the production process at kellianderson.com.