Hey everyone! It’s time for koome-bye-yah…and by that, I mean our next artist interview. This lovely lady (Rebecca) currently hails from the Bay area and has an equally IMPECCABLE sense of composition and color. Her art is tasteful and refreshing, but at the same time has this awesome air of eerieness that really draws you in deeper. To me, her work is like looking at this snapshot of a story that you have to piece together…an artist who is using her imagination to trigger more imagination from the viewer, which to me is just incredible.
I’ve known Rebecca for a long while now, and she’s always been one of the sweetest, encouraging, and creative souls I’ve yet to meet. I was really excited to finally be able to feature her and her truly awesome work. With out further blabber, meet Rebecca!
1. Who are you/tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Rebecca Soriano and I’m a craftswoman and artist living in San Francisco. I’ve got a 7 month old at home so right now I am a stay-at-home mom so I’m kind of working two jobs at the moment.
2. What are some of your favorite things to do?
I try to draw every day even tough I rarely have an unbroken hour to myself to do it. I have a few sketchbooks in progress and weirdly enough I have never finished one cover to cover. (It feels wrong.) I also love creating which includes sewing, embroidery and cross stitch, basic gardening, book binding, blogging, quilting, and challenging myself to try a new craft that keep my hands busy and away from the internet. (It doesn’t always work.)
3. What three words best describe your personality?
Ambitious (to a fault) pensive wanderer.
4. How would you describe your artistic style?
A bit weird, sometimes unsettling, floral. Although I can do realistic enough self portraits I find them too be too constricting. After completing drawing courses at a university I had to re-train my brain into working a little looser, less restrictive, and to quiet the voice that screams “That’s not realistic enough!”. As important as it is to know your basic human anatomy and foundation skills I try to strike a balance between the planes of realism and abstraction and not make art for a grade.
5. What kinds of things do you make and sell?
Right now I make necklaces, rings, and hand-pulled prints (mostly silkscreens but I also have some woodcuts and an etching) but keep posted because there are big things brewing. (Think housewares and hand bound sketchbooks.)
6. If you had to be trapped in a book (or movie), which one would it be and why?
“To A God Unknown” by John Steinbeck. It is such a beautifully tragic story that is hard to describe but easy to fall in love with. I love Steinbeck’s California and the characters he fills it with. At it’s most basic it is a story about homesteading, family, death, differing spirituality, and sacrifice. I think that the early 1900′s California (the area where the novel takes place is near Salinas) that Steinbeck describes is so haunting and desireable. He writes about land that is both inviting and dangerous. Unclaimed territory reserved only for the strong of body and spirt. All the men and women are resilient and made tough by the land they work and live on. It’s a complete departure from the city I live in and only 90 someodd miles and 100 years away.
7. Is there a special story behind your shop name, Little Otto Shop?
Well I have a different Etsy shop by the name of djfunsize where I used to sell handmade and vintage stuff. On November 1st, 2011 I found out that I was pregnant and I knew a lot of things were going to change. Of course I was going to stay at home and take care of the baby because there is no way a couple of collge students could afford a babysitter. I was so used to being employed and the thought of not being able to get those bi-weekly paychecks was something I didn’t really know how to handle it. Thus, I split djfunsize into a solely vintage store and created Little Otto Shop. A place for all things handmade and named after my handful of a baby boy.
8.What drew you to creating?
I think growing up in a house where my parents didn’t put a lot of pressure on getting straight a’s in every subject helped. My father studied graphic and industrial design when he was my age and my mother was always crocheting, cross stitching, and making me and my sisters (matching) church outfits. They just encouraged the three of us to pursue what we had a talent for and to at least get a C in everything else. My brother, sister, and I all ended up happier and making a living doing what we love.
9. Do you have any other job aside from your awesome shop?
Mommy of the year and random side gigs at former places of work.
10. What words of wisdom could would you give to aspiring creatives wanting to take that next step?
Narrow your focus! I struggle with this every day. Dedicate yourself to the craft(s) of your choosing but don’t spread yourself too thin or else everything you will make has the potential of becoming ho hum. Also definitely bone up on the business side of crafting. There is a lot more to becoming a successful maker than just your creativity. It’s so hard to “think business” when all you want to do is make but remember that there will always be people less creative and making more money than you are because they know how to work the business. Also keep every receipt. I feel like now I am just writing reminders to myself. Haha.
GET CONNECTED :>
Thanks so much for reading!! See you again soon!!
And much thanks to Rebecca for her willingness to participate in the artist interview series! You rock, girl!