March's Artist of the Month is Annika Malmqvist who has only recently signed up to Outside In. She creates wonderful and intricate textile works full of colour and life. Here Outside In volunteer Linda Davies asks Annika some questions.
1. Your stitching is beautiful: delicate and detailed. Do you do it all by hand?
I make everything by hand.
2. How long does a work take to complete? For example "Mess"
I usually work on 5-6 embroideries at the same time. But if I didn´t do anything else, except eating and sleeping, I think one embroidery would take a week.
3. Do you always use the same sort of thread? If so what is it and if not what determines the variety?
I use DMC yarn most of the time, but I sometimes mix with knitting or crochet yarn.
4. Your colours are vibrant. Do you plan your designs on paper?
I draw a lot, but just for fun, sometimes I make a form that is useful for a work, sometimes not. I find it important to let my hand just move till I "see" something going on in my head. Then the energy passes from the head, down through my hand and materializes on the fabric.
5. What is the inspiration for your work?
What I see around me in the daylight is always useful. Often I also dream a lot. Dreaming can be very good inspiration.
6. Are there any particular artists who provide you with inspiration?
7. Your work has an almost ethereal quality. Is that intentional?
8. Also there appear to be animals, birds and plants. Is the natural world important to you in your work?
What I pick up in my mind is always good. But I have to make a selection, of what passes through my mind. Sometimes I must take a break, to stop the big flow of impressions.
9. How do you feel about being Artist of the Month?
I´m delighted to be Artist of the Month and I hope to be inspired by other artists as well as I will inspire others.
10. What next?
I have a stiching group of my own and we plan to make an exhibition at Easter in Stockholm. I also have contact with the RAF to show my work in Frankfurt. Very exciting!
To see more of Annika's work click here.