Some of you may know that this year, after operating under the label "A Home For Tandy" for a few years creating textile homewares and accessories, I have re-considered, re-branded and re-incarnated as Deborah O'Toole Textile Artist.
The reason for this is because while I enjoyed natural dyeing and applying the technique to create the products, the repetitive nature of production work seemed to take the joy out of the process. After much soul searching, I realised that my passion is to create one off pieces of textile art. I still use natural dyeing as the basis of my pieces because I love the variation of colour and pattern which can be achieved on the fabric. It adds beautiful depth to the work. So that hasn't changed.
This decision did take quite a shift in my thinking and "letting go" of a concept I had spent some years building up and planning my future career on. Anyone will tell you that more sales can be made on lower price-point practical products however, this is ultimately my passion project so why spend my precious time on anything I'm less than passionate about??
With the decision made, I haven't looked back. I had the good fortune to take 12 months off full-time work and I used the time to develop my art practice in a (somewhat) disciplined and structured way. (I'll write about my studio practice in a future blog) I managed to create a body of work which I exhibited in November. My other achievements this year were re-launching my website/online shop and social media, getting cards printed, professional photos taken, making contact with potential stockists and setting up other business tools such as this blog (it's amazing what can achieved when one doesn't have to work full time!)
My plan from here is to post every Sunday (There. I've committed to it now!) I will continue to share my processes, artistic influences and development, and thoughts on being an artist and life in general. I do hope you will enjoy the content, and give feedback or suggestions on what you'd like to see more of. And of course, please feel free to share this with your friends who might also enjoy my ramblings!
In the meantime, you can follow me on FaceBook Instagram and Pinterest or check out my website.
I'll finish with a couple of pics of one of my favourite pieces from my new collection.