Sara, the Head of Crafts for Infinite Creature Designs, spoke with us recently, and we were fortunate enough to be able to get inside that head of hers to get some answers to our favorite questions. Sara explains her love for crafts and the scenes vibrant community. You can read more about her and her creations below.
GCX: What or who first piqued your interest in arts and crafts?
ICD: My father taught me to sew at a young age, and my family constantly encouraged me to learn new creative skills and experiment with new materials.
GCX: Why did you decide that you would make a specific type of craft?
ICD: As part of my college thesis, I began researching chaotic systems and fluid dynamics. In the course of that research, I stumbled upon the concept of fractal patterns. I had played with them on a computer when I was a kid, and when I started playing with them again, I became obsessed.
GCX: How do you feel about the artisan crafting community and their ability to benefit from GeekCraft Expo?
ICD: I love the idea of having a larger-scale venue for specifically geek-oriented crafters to get together. Focusing on makers instead of a celebrity, and really showcasing the artists themselves, is an important niche that needs filling.
GCX: Are you from the Portland area? If not originally, what brought you here?
ICD: My family moved here from Texas when I was 5. And, while I'm not a native, I am a Portlander through and through. I love this city!
GCX: What is your favorite thing about creating your product and being able to sell it to people personally vs. through sites like Etsy?
ICD: It’s all about the interaction! This is especially important for my art, because many people do not understand what fractals are. I get a thrill knowing that I can show someone something new, and hopefully broaden their appreciation for math and science. I particularly love hearing other people’s interpretation of the work. What they see it in is almost always different than what I see it in. That’s the beauty of these patterns! Making that personal connection is something you just don't get online.
GCX: What is the story of how you got to this point (beginning to now)?
ICD: When I was young I used to make jewelry, and I sold that at SCA events and local shops - that was my first experience selling my own work. After college, I exhibited my fractal art in local galleries, and in 2007 I began selling at the Portland Saturday Market. That was an awesome experience, and I learned a lot from doing that. I’ve only just recently started selling at conventions, so this is a new frontier for me. I’m trying to find my geeky people, the fractal-loving, math-loving people who will appreciate my work.
GCX: Is it important for people to understand that your product is not “mass produced’? Why?
ICD: When it comes to digital art, people don’t always understand that the computer is just a tool, like a sewing machine or a paintbrush. And like any craft, you put a lot of yourself into the work. Showing that to people and helping them to understand the process adds to their appreciation of the art.
GCX: What is the most special thing to you about your business?
ICD: I absolutely love being able to show people something new, and teach them something about the concepts of fractal math, and how it connects with nature and the world around us. It’s so much fun to talk to people about this, and really engage with them!
GCX: What do you want to do with your crafts long-term?
ICD: I’d love to expand to bigger shows and conventions, maybe discover more wholesale opportunities, which I’ve flirted with in the past. But I especially enjoy large-scale custom work. Any opportunity to create something personal is always fun, and scale is a very important aspect of fractal art. The bigger, the better! The larger work really showcases what fractals can be, so I love doing that stuff.
GCX: Are you picking this particular location because you live here or do you travel to multiple shows a year?
ICD: I am new to the convention scene, so I have not done a lot of traveling outside the Pacific Northwest. Doing local shows is a good way to try things out without the expense of travel. And of course, I like making local connections.
GCX: What do you like about the overall arts and craft experience?
ICD: Getting your hands dirty and making things! Putting your personal touch, your own spin, on things. There is so much out there, and I’m learning new techniques every day! It’s wonderful to be a part of such a vibrant community.
Thanks for sharing your love of community and crafts with GeekCraft. We are looking forward to seeing more of your designs and creatures. See you at GeekCraft Expo PDX.