Monday

Artist Series - Totusmel


If you are an admirer of tatting then you must get to know this wonderful tatter. TotusMel creates her own designs --they are unusual and inspiring. This is certainly not your great-grandmothers tatting! This past summer she held a tatting challenge, Tatting is not a Lost Art, with one of her medallions. I decided to enter, and while I didn't win I enjoyed creating a design using her tatted piece. I recommend reading her blog...since it's one of my favorites!

1. When did you become interested in art and did you choose art, or did it choose you?

Art has always been a part of my life. My family is rife with amazingly talented artists in a variety of mediums and I have bounced around quite a variety myself. Tatting found me at a point when I was burnt out from knitting and drawing. I wanted to do something that was different from what my contemporaries were doing, something that I
could make my own and this craft referred to as a dying art was exactly what I needed.

2. You get to spend one weekend each with three historical figures, an artist, a writer and one of your choice. Who are they and what will you talk about?

This question seems designed to make me
feel terribly uncultured. Most of my favorite artists and writers will not be historical for quite some time. If pressed to choose, I pick H.P. Lovecraft, M.C. Escher and perhaps one of the many ancient philosophers that I admire. They each clearly have unique perceptions of life and the world around us that would help me make sense of it all.

3. Do any of these choices influence your work?

My work is very dark and gothic, I imagine that my love of horror and bleak art has an incredible influence on me and the choices I make.

4. How has the popularity of the internet affected your work?

If it were not for the Internet I would have not only not learned tatting, but I would have had little reason or outlet for expanding my skill. I am not a particularly social person at this point in my life, so the interest has given me not only people to create for, but also inspiration to create.


5. Have you discovered any new techniques to creating your work that you can share?

I am still learning, so I often encounter a new technique while creating. Many of my pieces are simply trials along the way to more complex and engaging designs.


6. How do you overcome artist block?


I change directions. I window shop for inspiration or I simply revisit old designs and let my hands recreate as they will.


7. If I walked into your studio this moment what would you show me first? What would you want to hide?


First let me stop laughing at the idea that I have a studio. What I do have is a nice new desk with plenty of storage, though I actually do all my creating in a corner of my couch. I am particularly fond of a few of my extra large pieces, the ones I could never sell, not only because they would be ridiculously expensive, but also because they represent a huge place of growth for me. I've got nothing I'm embarrassed by, most of my learning pieces are long gone, so it's all good.


8. Describe something that comes up in your work because of a life experience.


I am a grown up goth. I spent a lot of my youth as a social reject in black listening to dark music. Though I've traded in most of my vinyl pants and corsets for jeans and a tank top, I still love the look of highly ornate gothic and Victorian jewelry. It is one design element that I think I will always embrace even if I no longer have a reason to wear my own pieces.


9. Describe what you do, or who you are in a haiku.

Knots in thread I tie
Rings and chains connect to form
Adornments of lace

10. Is there anything else that you would like to share?


I never imagined when I began tatting by following patterns that I would ever create something anyone would consider to be art. I hope that I can continue to grow and create new and interesting pieces that speak to people. I hope my children will want to learn when they get older so I can do a little to keep tatting alive and relevant.

27 reviews:

TotusMel said...

Thank you so much for the opportunity and the kind words. They mean so much coming from such a talented artist!

seekngsane said...

very nice knit work here,cheers!

Cindy said...

Great interview! I like how you ask the questions that make you think. Very lovely tatting!

Leah said...

Great interview, and absolutely beautiful work!

Kelly said...

Wow. Awesome feature. Thanks so much for stopping by my blog!

Debbie Gootter said...

I have seen this stuff and love it!

SilverSunbeam said...

I love seeing totusmel all over the place... her work is so unusual and beautiful!

genny said...

wow i like what you post...

Wende said...

So beautiful! I adore that blue/purple scarf.

Any Occasion Boutique said...

What an awesome interview and fabulous tatting! You have a wonderful gift of creation :-)

Stormee said...

I think this artist is awesome. Her tatted work is to die for.
This is a great article.

greavesdesign said...

I recently discovered her work and was blown away! certainly not 'your grandmother's tatting'! It is inspiring to see someone re-interpret an old artform. I think black and white photographs of the work would be striking images as well...

congrats to you for such a great feature!

cindy : quaint said...

very beautiful work and i enjoyed your interview! thank you for visiting us!

Leslie said...

Wow!! She is awesome. Your post was well written.

thebeadedlily said...

Fantastic interview! Great questions!

Beat Black said...

I love her shop, she does amazing things!

espionage said...

SO GORGEOUS!!!

palleikodesigns said...

Fantastic interview! I love TotusMel's work so it's nice to see her featured.

Melisa J said...

I was given pillowcases that had tatting on them when I got married. I cherished and used them to they wore out.

This takes it to a whole different level! I want to learn.

Melisa
www.melisaj.blogspot.com/

M.Kate said...

wow...this is so cool as I've never seen anything like this before, dont think they sell it here. The last time I heard about the word tatting was many years ago, I wonder why its not popular here..but seriously, these are just beautiful. tks for sharing and have a great weekend :D

HINT Jewelry Design said...

amazing work!

fly tie said...

great interview.

Rose Works Jewelry said...

Wow - I've seen and been impressed by her work before - it was really cool to get to learn more about the artist!

Scott Bulger Photography said...

Really nice interview. Great questions.

Julia said...

How exquisite :) Thank you for this beautiful interview!

The Real Mother Hen said...

This is pretty - and very cool!!!

Half an Acre said...

at last - a blog asking great questions from an artist - I've had to answer so many - "what's your favourite colour" questions for features ......
Amazing work from this artist - wish I had the occasion to wear ....

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