Moss Rock Festival is honored to have Sarah Conklin as the festival’s Featured Artist in 2019. Be sure to visit her booth on the Orange Row – Site 354. But in the meantime, check out our short interview with her and learn more about this Huntsville talent.
What is it about textiles and printmaking that attracted you to them?
The endless possibilities of them both. Fabric can be made into just about anything. Printmaking allows me to make any design / print on the fabrics I wish, with any amount of colors I want, yet I prefer to only use one color for the simplicity of it.
What inspires the drawings and imagery that eventually make it into your printed creations?
I just see things that to me would possibly make a great print later on. I either take a photograph of it, make a quick sketch or bookmark it somehow.
How do you find that inspiration?
I find my inspiration from objects I see as I go about my everyday, by going outside,traveling, looking at books or magazines and of course the internet is a never ending source of inspiration. I look for the beauty in everything I see.
Your work is intimately connected to nature in subject matter and process. What eco-friendly and sustainable processes do you institute when you create?
The fabric I print on comes mainly from the thrift stores around Huntsville. Along with the supplies I use – zippers, thread and linings. Also, I reuse anything that anyone in my family might be done with. And I only use water based ink to screen print my prints to help minimize using anything that might be bad for the environment.
Loved seeing your recent cloud sketch. Do you have a favorite print that you’ve created over the years, or one that is popular amongst your buyers and collectors?
My favorite print is my “rock” print I did a few years ago. It is based on rocks I had collected and brought home with me from my favorite place on the Hudson River. I feel my most popular print to date has been my “arrow” print. All my prints have a story behind them. I will tell you the story behind any of them, if your curious just ask!
You often create functional pieces that are beautiful, will get good use, and will endure. Do you see them as future heirlooms?
I have not really thought about my pieces in that way directly. I think more about my pieces being purposeful and making the person that uses them happy. Yet, now that you mention it I do hope that my pieces last long enough to be past down to the next generation to be purposeful for them.
Is there something in your life which you appreciate like that in your everyday?
Yes, I have a collection of pastel drawings my mom made. I will be passing these on to my kids to enjoy and remember their grandmother was an artist too.
We see that your IG account is sprinkled with tarot card posts. How did you get into that?
Yes, my IG is sprinkled with tarot card posts. I have more of an interest in tarot cards, yet I do dabble a bit in astrology too. Tarot kind of found me. I started seeing tarot cards used more and more as a self care tool. At the time that tarot found me I was searching for self care tools that could help me have more clarity in my life and be more ground in who I am.
How does tarot influence your life and work in positive ways?
Tarot (along with oracle cards, yoga, journaling and meditation) are part of my self care tools that help me operate in a more intentional way and live more mindfully. All of these tools in combination have helped me better understand my own likes & preferences so that I can be my true self and do my best to not let the external world have bearing on who and what I create. I really make art for myself and am grateful to be able to create useful piece of art that are friendly to the earth. I am also deeply honored that people want to own my textiles and use them in their homes. I owe most of this to the work I have done using self care tools I have found like tarot cards!!