Katy Biele // Embroidery Artist // Victoria BC, Canada
Katy Biele is a Chilean Embroidery artist living in Victoria BC in Canada. The style she's developed is based on her South American background and everything that she has taken in while traveling. The result is a combination of textures, a lot of bright colors and a wide variety of stitching and painting techniques.
1. I began my #CraftWithConscience series as a way to simultaneously promote the work of other makers and to discuss the complicated issues surrounding creative inspiration and developing ones’ own visual vocabulary. The internet is an ever growing fixture in many artist’s lives and businesses, could you talk about the role the internet plays in your artistic and professional life?
I share my artwork on the internet, mostly on instagram where I try to share my process to my followers and people who enjoy seeing my artwork. At this time I think it plays a super important role because it's a good platform where my work can be discovered and direct people to my Etsy shop.
2. Where do you find inspiration for your work? In what ways has the internet and/or social media impacted your design process?
I paint and make a lot of drawings, that's a big part of my process for finding inspiration. I've also been traveling a lot and living in different places and have a lot of photos and memories of particular styles, patterns and colors that have had an impact on me. At the moment I live in the beautiful west coast of Canada, and in Victoria there are a lot of gardens where I can find ideas for new artwork. On the internet I like to follow artists that I respect on instagram and I feel very inspired when I see their process too. I Usually have ideas in my mind that I have to create either in textile or on paper, some ideas last longer and some are very fast. It's a magical process, sometimes I really don't know where the ideas come from.
3. Sites like Pinterest and Instagram are popular places for artists’ to share their own work. They also act as public visual archives, often leading to creative work by others that walks the line between ‘inspiration’ and ‘infringement.’ Have you encountered copies of your work online and how does it affect you? What are your strategies for dealing with it?
Instagram is growing so much now and I realize that we take a lot of risks sometimes sharing all our work, videos, and processes etc. Somebody can take all of our ideas and sell them very easily, but without these internet sites, it would be so much more difficult to be discovered by art curators, shops and other business opportunities. I have seen some copies of my work and ideas where even the title of the piece was copied. It makes me feel very frustrated and sad when it happens, but most of the time I find very respectful followers or other designers and artists that like my work. There is a very supportive community out there.
I try to take as many photos as I can of the work in progress, to show the steps that I have to do to create an embroidery piece, painting or illustration. I also write about where the idea come from or why I'm doing that piece etc. I think that is a good way the show how your work and process are totally creative and real.
4. Do you have any advice for aspiring artists or creative business people?
The advice that I can give is to keep going, that this is a long long process, and it can take a lot of time to create an art style to finally create pieces or illustrations that make some sense for ourselves. Always keep your own style, and find your own voice in any kind of creative art or business that you make, the key is to keep it original. Also try to use different materials and mediums because we never know what we can discover there! Remember, if it was easy, everyone would be successful.
5. Do you have any favorite blogs, artists, or Instagram accounts that you’d like to share?
I follow a lot of artists whose work, originality, and creative process makes me feel so happy and inspired. These ladies are my favorites:
Trini Guzman from Chile.
Valeria Faúndez, From Chile
Isabelle Feliu, who is an illustrator.
Leah Goren, from NY
All photos provided by the artist