Meet Our Featured Artist for September Studio Fibonacci! We asked Diane, the woman behind Studio Fibonacci, a few questions about her truly inspiring life and how she became the artist that she is today!
1. Can you supply us with a brief bio about yourself and your designs?
My name is Diane. I’m 51 years old. I have ALS. My ability to use my hands to create is disappearing, but I’m trying to retrain myself in using an eye tracking device to manipulate the screen cursor so I can continue to design. My job lets me work from home as an IT professional (I have a stupendous boss!), but in the near future I wont be able to work — my voice is disappearing. In a few months I’ll have to use a speech synthesizer, so I’ll sound like a female Stephen Hawking.
I had been improving my graphic design skills for about a decade, but the path to fabric design was not planned. About 7 years ago I was volunteering for One Laptop Per Child and was selling parts and accessories for their XO laptop. Customers kept asking for T-shirts, mugs, etc so I started producing those types of items using print on demand services and fabric happened to be one of the items.
I’d been a quilter for 20 years by that point, so I was immediately drawn to fabric design. At almost the same time, both of my parents were in separate traumatic accidents (3 days apart). My life suddenly became all about helping them. All other hobbies ceased — but I found I could still do fabric design on a laptop while sitting by a hospital bed. So the number of designs started expanding quickly. The rest, as they say is history.
2. Where do you get your inspiration when designing?
I’m a bit of a magpie: constantly distracted by shiny things. That’s my way of saying my inspiration is from everywhere: pop culture (TV, movies, books), fine art, mid-century modern design, art deco design, and the list is endless. Whatever catches my eye at any given moment….
3. What made you decide to become an artist?
I’ve always had crafty or creative hobbies: quilting, woodworking, and pottery were the major ones. I used to joke that my hobbies involved taking a large item, cutting it up, and reassembling it — more engineering than art. I also seriously dabbled in Precious Metal Clay jewelry making, paper making & origami.
4. Of your designs what would you say your favorites are and why?
I really like designs that have a hidden “joke” or some other kind of “secret handshake”. The kind of thing that you get if you are in a fandom. Or designs that mash up 2 different fandoms; Mondrian Who is a good example.
5. What would you say is the most important thing to keep in mind when creating your own design?
“Relax. Don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s graphic design; not life and death.”
6. What are your favorite tools/ software to use when creating your designs?
I use Adobe Illustrator almost exclusively. Occasionally Photoshop.
7. What is your favorite part about being an artist?
I’m still not sure I see myself as an artist. I feel a bit of a fraud when someone describes me as one. I suppose the “favorite” thing is when I feel I’ve actually constructed the thing I imagined in my head and it looks like I envisioned: that my skills are equal to my imagined “thing”.
8. If you could meet anyone today be it living or dead who would you meet and why?
Today its James Burke (BBC journalist/science writer/futurist). Yesterday it was William Shakespeare. Ask me again tomorrow… 😉
9. Who would you say is your favorite artist of all time?
I’m not sure I can pick just one: DaVinci, Rembrandt, Winslow Homer, Thomas Easkins, Monet, Mary Cassatt, Van Gogh, M C Escher, Mondrian, Bruegel the Elder, and on, and on.
You can find these and many more of her beautiful designs at myfabricdesigns.com. Go to her artist profile page and choose one of her designs for your next creation!
To celebrate Studio Fibonacci as our artist of the month we are offering 25% off all orders during the month of September. Just use code studio at checkout.