Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Heidi Burton

"I have always been surrounded by creativity," says Heidi Burton. As a child she used to ponder over the sweet drawings her mother made when designing beautiful clothes that her children would later wear with pride. Her father painted as a hobby, and his employment involved cartography ("which is probably why I love maps so much!" says Heidi. Her interest in old black and white and sepia photography derives from her father's interest in family history, and she gains further inspiration from her sister's success as a photographer and fashion designer.

She hoped to attend art school in college, but got a nasty surprise when she was rejected. This led her to move from job to job and feel creatively stifled and emption -- feeling what she thought was an unrequited love for art. But her confidence was restored when she re-applied six years later and was accepted, finishing last summer with a degree in illustration. "The most important thing I learned from my degree is that, at least in my case, imperfect drawing has so much more character and energy than that of accurate perspectives and flawless shading. My critique feedback was always 'your sketchbook work is so much more interesting than your final piece.' I discovered there is such a thing as 'final-piece anxiety' where one can try TOO hard. Draw now, think later!" she laughs.

She loves to draw people when they don't realize they're being watched, and she appreciates vulnerability of the subconscious self. Heidi also draws inspiration from the patterns and sysmmetry she sees in nature. "I love geometric lines, simplicity, and experimenting with texture." Her work is also inspired by poetry; at the moment she's in love with the work of Sylvia Plath, Tennyson, Christina Rossetti, along with novels by Haruki Murakami.

For Heidi, the best thing about being a seller on Etsy is the heart-warming feeling she gets from the knowledge that people all over the world have her prints and cards in their homes. "It is the best incentive to be creative," she says.

Visit her blog as well as her Flickr account.

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