Welcome to a brand new weekly feature that I'm really excited about! Each week I will choose a wonderful Etsy shop to share with you all. We can all have fun finding new products for our homes and lives, not to mention some wonderful gift ideas - Christmas will be here before we know it, after all!
First up, we have Erin of the beautiful shop Lady Honsa. She sells gorgeous original paintings, prints, invitations, and scrapbook paper that she designs. She even hand-paints glass pieces, turning them into works of art for your home. Talk about multi-talented!
Erin and her mom Kerrie. Such a sweet picture!
Erin is an Australian-native currently living with her husband in the US. She collaborates with her mom, Kerrie as well. Even though they live on opposite sides of the globe, they manage to combine poetry and art to create wonderful pieces.
So, let's meet Erin!
I remember as a little kid, my 2 brothers and I were always sitting out on the back verandah painting. Mum painted art when she was in school and teachers college, and she always encouraged us to paint as well. At that time it was just a fun way to spend time with my family, but when I reached high school I really fell in love with art. I never thought I was any good, but I just remember it being a way to get out some of my frustrations and anger (teenage years!). As I got a little older, I knew that I couldn’t make a career out of it, or maybe I didn’t really consider it. I was always good at science, so decided to choose that career path. I was the nerd that took physics, biology and chemistry, and loved it. Once I started seriously studying science, my art really stopped. I’d doodle every now and then, but that’s about it. I have no formal training in art, and there are many times I dream about what would have happened if I’d pursued a career in art.
I then moved to the USA to start graduate school. When my to-be husband found out how much I love art and love to paint, he told me I needed to start again. So for a couple of years I’d paint artwork for our apartment, or for some friends and family members. As graduate school got really busy, I stopped again, and it wasn’t until I graduated and moved to my “real” job that I found I had passion again to paint (not to mention TIME!). I didn’t think of really selling my art, I do not have confidence in what I do, and I’m terrified of someone saying my art is crap. Once again, my husband talked me into being a bit more confident, so I started my Etsy store.
I never imagined it would be so much work, I was very naïve. I thought, hey I’ll just take some crappy photos of my paintings and throw them on this site. They will sell, right? Ha! Not even close. The sheer amount of talented artists on this site has been very overwhelming, but over the 3 months I’ve been selling online, I’ve already become more critical and passionate about my art. I’ve also expanded my designs to include scrapbook paper pattern designs, which is a lot of fun! I’m constantly trying new things, prints are being deleted and canvases being thrown out if I don’t like it. One thing that will never change, however, is me painting for what I think the masses will want, compared to what I want to paint. I’m sure this hurts sales, but I just can’t do it. And I’ve tried! Beige and muted colours just aren’t me. It must have something to do with my red hair!
I recently also added my Mum (my best friend) to my shop, she still lives in Australia. She teaches primary school and writes poems to help with class lessons. So we now have a couple of kid sections in our shop, with poems she wrote, which are perfect for a classroom, and I make the art for it. I’ve also enjoyed making personalized name art for babies. We haven’t had any sales yet from the child section, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed!!
An example of Erin and Kerrie's poetry and art collaboration - wouldn't this be amazing in a schoolroom? Great gift for the teachers in your life!
What's your favorite thing to paint/print/etc?
I love using colours (if you can’t guess from my art) and I love mixing colours to make abstract pieces. Often I will get a feeling about something, or have some emotion I need to express, so I do so through mixing colours. Often I will pick up a paint brush and start painting, then something hits me and I know what I want to make.
I don’t have a lot of space in my tiny apartment, so right now I have been focusing on using a graphics program to make my art pieces. I am sloooooowly learning how to use this, but it’s been a lot of fun. My current project is my Geometric Fall 2013 Collection. One day I was sitting at work and had an idea for one print, and now I have about 20 made. Not all of them are listed on my shop right now, I am trying to gauge whether they’d actually be popular, or if I’m just kidding myself!
Making patterns for scrapbook paper has also become a favourite thing of mine. But deep down I will still enjoy painting with acrylic paint the most. There’s just something about having dried paint all over your hands, and sometimes face, that makes me happy and think of my childhood.
One of Erin's acrylics. I love this piece, plus it's customizable - so you can choose the colors to perfectly coordinate with your decor!
What are some of your favorite items currently for sale in your shop?
I really love the geometric print collection I’m working on. There’s something so fun about the mixing of colours and the minimalistic, yet modern feel of these prints. Right now I’m making them to be a square print, and I am going to be framing some of them. I feel with the explosion of colours in some of them, as well as the contrast of dark colours with a spot of bright, they’d look amazing in a frame with large matting around it. That’s what I’m hoping potential buyers will imagine when they look at my prints. If I can hopefully take some photos of them in an actual frame, it will help buyers see their potential.
One of Erin's geometric prints (my favorite colors!) - wouldn't a whole grouping of these framed on the wall look amazing?
Can you tell us three fun facts about yourself?
- I was born and raised in Australia.
- I have a PhD in microbiology.
- I met my husband (who is from Houston, Texas) online on the message boards for the Houston Astros Baseball team, when I was still living in Australia. 6 years later we were married in Australia.
A gorgeous hand-painted glass bowl. This piece is also customizable with many different pieces to choose from and a huge selection of colors. Another great gift idea for those people who are really hard to buy for!
Thank you so much, Erin, for letting us take an inside look at your work! Be sure to check out Lady Honsa to pick up some pieces of your own.
To keep up with all that Erin is busy creating, check out her creations and follow her here:
Website, soon to be here.
Blog, soon to be here
If you have an Etsy shop and would like to be considered for an upcoming feature, feel free to send me an email!
Linking up with Mod Mix Monday