Friday, May 29, 2009

Artisan Vignette WEEkend interview on WEE CREATURES

My dear friend Dana, of the Midnight Orange, makes the most precious little clay sculpts for your wee ones, or your yourself! Titled, 'wee creatures,' you can peruse her Etsy shop for ready made, or custom creatures! Check out the Artwark mascot she made for me, complete with mini jewelry mallet! I love the Dana's work and the story behind her art, so read on for her interview!!

Q: When did you start your line of wee creatures?
A: I gave birth to my first daughter three years ago. Indeed she came out very wee. Oh, you mean the clay ones? It's been almost a year. :)

Q: What inspired you to do them?
A: My daughter really likes little things that she can hold in her hand and take everywhere with her. I saw my options at the stores and wanted to show up the manufactured plastics. Indeed, I think I have!

Q: How do you come up with the cute little stories behind each one?
A: They just come on a whim. It usually stems from their name, and sometimes how I imagine their disposition to be based on how expressive their eyes are, or on their body language. I had an octopus that looked shy so I named her Wee Blushing Bree, and then the story birthed about her inking in front of a cute boy octopus, which made her gasp and then pass bubbles. Who wouldn't blush after that?!

Q: What future do you see with the wee creatures?
A: One that is thriving! Soon I will be introducing a line of Wee Creature magnets, bookmarks, stick puppets, story boards, and a collector's series that will roll out a new piece in the collection each month. There is really no end to where they can go - time limits are my only constraints!

Q: How long do they take to make/process, how do you make them?
A: The actual sculpting usually takes about 40 - 50 minutes depending on detail. Then I glaze them in batches. However, let's not forget to account for photographing them at 5 angles, editing and uploading the photos, creating the listing and writing the description, and then after the sale I box it, wrap it, and take a trip to the post office. So front to back it is much more time consuming than one would think, and in truth I am underselling them.

Q: With a husband, children and full time job, how do you juggle everything and keep up with it all? Clay is very portable -
A: I take it everywhere with me. When I am home with my girls we sculpt clay together and my kids get amazed as wee little eyes are formed and then stare up at them. Sometimes they pick the colors for me (and sometimes I override their decisions!). Also, I get very little sleep. And yet I am still dazzling!

Q: Do you have any advice for new Etsy Sellers or artists?
A: Have foresight and confidence. I find ways to plant seeds in my conversations that will lead to me talking about my work with others. Example: Right now my fingernails are orange with blue rhinestones. People compliment them and I say that it is because my business is called The Midnight Orange. They ask me what it is, and I plug shamelessly from there and leave them with a business card. Always have confidence to talk about your work, and always find ways to talk about it. Whenever possible, have something on you to show them.

**Click on the todays post to check out Dana's shop or cut ans paste

Check back on Monday for a tutorial on darkening metals for your jewelry projects!!


Sarah aka Artwark said...

did i mention that the artwark with mallet, bunny and peacock and mine :D im not one to collect things (i actually dislike the grouping of things all together for the mere sake of hording them) BUT, i am officially starting a WEE collection of creatures :) Plus, its a good time to be my friend, as I have been purchasing Goodies from Dana lately for gift items :) feel free to leave comments, thoughts, ideas


Dana said...

Haha - thank you Sarah! I too have found that this is a good time to be your friend, you are a very loyal customer! Anyone else who would like to start their own Wee Creature collection, whether from the shop or customized just for them, can contact me at
Hope everyone enjoys their WEEkends!

sarah Aka Artwark said...

hehehe :) well Dana, now i know the trick to making friends! buy stuff from them~ just kidding of course!! you are a great customer of mine too :D I love how women networking in business is so much fun and efficient. Gree book find: Marketing for Women

Did you know that 85% of all purchases are by women??

Lou's addictions said...

These are sooo cute, I'm definatley gonna keep this store in mind for pressies for my niece and nephews and my own kiddies too.

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Artwark is an up and coming jewelry business that began as a hobby 2 years ago. I am designer/marketer, Sarah and i welcome you to my little corner of the world :D