Five Little Questions: Robin Carr
16 Monday Jul 2012
In this ongoing series, Five Little Questions (About Creativity), I’m talking to creative people all over the world to find out about their creative process. This week I’m chatting with Robin Carr, who lives in Northeast Tennessee. You’ll see lots of Robin’s work here, and you can find more on her blog: http://redrobinlane-rgcarr.blogspot.com.
A little about Robin—My name is Robin Carr. I am a native Floridian but have lived here in Northeast Tennessee where I can see mountains for the last 25 years. I am a wife and mother of 5 and have 3 lovely granddaughters. I am not working currently but for the past 7 years I worked at a Performing Arts Center. I have done crafts most of my adult life.
My two main crafts are cloth doll making and paper crafts, especially rubber stamping and paperdolls. I love cloth dollmaking but have mostly concentrated on paper crafts the last few years. Making cards is much less time-consuming than dollmaking. I was in a wonderful cloth doll group here but in one year nearly every member moved away and the club fell apart. We have met over time and had some weekend retreats and done round robins but it has been a while. I am interested in getting back into dollmaking and exploring some papier mache face and head making.
Q. When you think of “creative people”, what kind of people come to mind?
A. “Creative people”, to me, are those that see potential in everything. They can make something beautiful or useful out of anything. They’re always doing things a different way, nothing around them is usual.
I also think of people that make everything they use more special somehow. I have a friend who is a chef. Every table she sets, every time she gives you something, not necessarily a gift, it is displayed with a flourish of some kind. I think of creative people as people that make every thing and every day have a little bit of art.
Q. What is your (to-date) favorite project?
A. I love when I first find a new technique. I was at an outdoor craft show about 18 years ago and a woman was demonstrating heat embossing. It was the most wonderful thing I had ever seen and I fell in love with it. It is still one of my favorite techniques.
About 24 years ago I made a little girl doll from a Carolee Pattern. It was about the most difficult doll I had done to date and I loved it. She is similar to Shirley Temple and has a pink polka dotted dress. I was just so happy that I could make her. I made a couple more but that one made me very happy.
Q. What time of day do you work best in?
A. Mostly late at night. I usually get really inspired about midnight. When my children were little I frequently stayed up all night crafting. Now from midnight til about 3 am is when I feel very invigorated and creative. I can also work during the day but late night is my favorite.
Q. Say you’ve just sat down to a project but the energy just isn’t there. What do you do?
A. I get out books, fabric and trim and look at them. I rarely do the projects in books but I am usually inspired by them. Lately I search on Pinterest, but mostly I prefer books or non-electronic media.
What usually starts a project is that I see something and get an idea. Then I think about it for a few days or so. I usually work out most of the project in my head before I start on it. It almost never goes the way I planned it but it usually starts out that way.
If I am using papers or fabric I start sorting through it to find what I want to use, usually several choices that I narrow down as I work. The sorting of fabric and papers really puts me in the mood to create.
Q. What does your creative space look like?
A. Messy. I want to see everything I have right in front of me. I don’t want to have to reach or look for anything when I am in the middle of creating.
Thanks for sharing your work and your creative insights with us, Robin! If you’d like to see more of Robin’s work, check out her blog at: http://redrobinlane-rgcarr.blogspot.com.