|Chickadee, Perched by Kirsten Chursinoff 2014|
Q and A interview for the student in Northern Ireland
You can read my answers below.
What do you like most about embroidery?
I love how embroidery is so versatile. There are endless stitch
choices especially when combining hand and machine embroidery. Simple
materials can lead to a complex outcome depending on your approach.
Where do you gather most of your inspiration for your work?
Nature, both wild and cultivated, provides most of my inspiration. I
also think it’s important to look outside the textile art world for
inspiration. I have used embroidery books for stitch and technique
instructions but then I look to books on painting or photography for
ideas about composition and ways of seeing the world.
What is the main challenge you face when beginning a piece?
Facing a blank page, or a blank piece of cloth, can be a challenge for
all creative people. When designing, I find it’s best to start with
something other than a blank page: layer some textured paper; sponge
on some paint; or scribble with a pencil just to get rid of the
blankness. You can build your design from there. The first marks may
not even show in your final design, but it gives you a starting point.
I highly recommend collage as a way to develop imagery, especially if
drawing is not your strongest skill.
What are your goals for the future (as an artist)?
I have some ideas for illustrating a children’s book with embroidery
and fabric art. I’d also like to share some techniques in a how-to
textile art book for adults. In the near future I hope to continue
exhibiting my work and speaking to embroidery and textile art guilds.
What are you working on at the moment?
I have two small children, so hand embroidery is my passion right now.
It's easy to pick up and put down when I have a few moments to spare.
I’ve been hand embroidering a lot of birds lately. I love the feathers
and markings and feel that stitch is a perfect medium for depicting
birds. For many years I was focused on machine embroidery, so it's
nice to come back to hand embroidery with fresh ideas. I'm taking some
time to experiment with some new stitch ideas as a way to expand my
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada