This design was inspired by artist Tamara Phillips, and is #4 in our Little Stitchy Collection of free hand embroidery designs. And if you would like to learn more about our featured artist, be sure to check out her interview below, under our Artist Spotlight section.
• Tamara Phillips •
Shop: Deep Coloured Water
Facebook: Tamara Phillips Art
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name’s Tamara. I live in Beautiful British Columbia, Canada. I have a profound love for the natural world and I am currently a full time artist. I have studied Environmental Science and hold a BSc in Biology.
I have been creative my whole life, but have only started seriously applying myself to painting in the last few years, and I just started showing art last year!
2. What made you want to become an artist?
I don’t feel that it was ever a choice to become an artist. I just am this way: creative.
I am happy it is my path.
3. How did you learn to paint?
I have taken a few courses in colour theory and painting, and I practiced illustrating at an anatomical level in biology courses, but I am largely self taught as an artist. My style of watercolour painting is something that merged out of tea stains, pen doodles, and exploration.
4. What inspires you most/where do your ideas come from?
Nature. There is so much detailed imperfection in nature that it is perfect. All my work is based on this perfect imperfection. I spend a lot of time in the outdoors exploring the depths of the forest, and the rhythm of the waves. Every time I walk into nature I feel elevated to a place only wild space can take me. It is my greatest inspiration. My gratitude penetrates deep, and in turn, I allow the earth to paint through me.
5. How would you describe your creative process?
Random, but detailed, just like my mind, and my finished pieces. My work evolves in real time. I often don’t know what I’m painting until I start painting. Usually I know my subject, and start with a pencil drawing, but even these marks can be unpredictable. What I love most about working with watercolour is that you have to surrender to the liquid, and allow it to show you where to paint. Many artists fear watercolour, because of its permanence. I believe it’s just a matter of learning to let go, and trusting the journey, or better yet, exploring where you end up. Watercolour is ephemeral for me.
6. What are your favorite materials or medium?
Watercolour on paper. I also love working with dyes, paints and pigments of all kinds, natural objects, clay, fabric, wood, plaster, and food. I love making terrariums, and planting indoor and outdoor gardens.
7. What is your favorite color? Does it influence your work?
Dark deep blue-green. It isn’t turquoise, it isn’t teal. It’s the colour of a dark swollen lake, heavy with secrets. I believe the purest form of this colour cannot be captured on film or even in pigment. It’s both dark and light all in one, and I admire it because it is not replicable.
There is a lot of turquoise in my work. The colour calms me, and subdues my chaotic technicolour mind.
8. What advice or tips would you give to someone who is new to painting?
9. Do you enjoy collecting anything?
I am not much of a consumer. I have a thing for plants, shells, rocks, mushrooms, sea glass, pine cones, twigs, essential oils, colour and string (sometimes I feel like a crow). For the most part, these things that I find along my daily path, can usually be returned to the earth, no harm done, when my curiosity has subsided. Aside from that, I don’t own lots.
What I have learnt to collect in life, is experiences. Whether it’s traveling, exploring a new forest, talking to someone completely different from myself, jumping “on board” just to do it and try something new, or tasting the weirdest food, these experiences enrich my life. They give my life value, perspective, and understanding. I collect new experiences. I highly recommend it!
10. Tell us about your work space?
I love painting outdoors, and around plants!
11. Why do you favor animals and wildlife as your subject matter?
Because I love wildlife.
I live next to the ocean and have spent some time working out at sea. I have also lived in the forest. I consider it a privilege to experience animals, mushrooms, and trees. They are so grand.
I have recently discovered that my strongest voice is through painting. I can use my voice to carry the message that these wild things are important. Not only are they beautiful, but they are integral to our own sustenance. They really are worth fighting for.
I hope by sharing my rendition of these wild things, it will remind of their existence, increase awareness, and contribute to conservation efforts.
I sell my paintings and prints online through my website: www.tamaraphillips.ca and on Etsy: www.etsy.com/shop/deepcolouredwater. I love painting, and warmly welcome commissions.
Thank you so much Tamara for your interview and for being a part of our Artist Spotlight! And also for inspiring an embroidery design for our Little Stitchy Collection.
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We hope you enjoy this free hand embroidery design of this whimsical seahorse. We also hope you found Tamara’s interview to be as interesting as we did. We love her artwork and think her talents are amazing. Also be sure to check out some of our other free embroidery designs and artist interviews as shown above.