We are lucky to have many very talented artists and crafts people in the Pagan world and I’ve often wondered how they became so accomplished in their work, so I decided to interview some of them to find out how they got to where they are today. In this interview I talk to the lovely and multi-talented Karen Richardson.
Hi Karen, thank you for agreeing to this interview, can you tell me a bit about yourself and your work?
Well I'm 64 I've been on my pagan path for well over 40 years now. My last employment was a lead research officer and holistic therapist. However in December 2011 I fell , fractured my skull and damaged the right frontal lobe of my brain. I was off work for 6 months at first and I went to a felt making class and my teacher said I was good had i always been creative and had I done it before. I started to try other crafts such as spinning, willow weaving, pottery and folk art and found that I could do creative things now . I tried to go back to work but being on the computer made me really sick and dizzy and I had terrible aura migraines so I had to leave it was then that I decided to set up my own craft business.
Were you creative as a child and did you always want to be an artist?
I always wanted to be able to draw and paint as my granddad and auntie were amazing artists but I had no talent even though I loved to paint .
Have you had any training or are you self-taught?
A bit of both really I have tried lots of crafts and had some art classes that I love as my son and daughter in law treated me to art lessons . My daughter in law is a very talented artist and very creative and has really encouraged me.
How would you describe your work?
My work changes all the time as I'll think of something new I want to do and I love trying out new things.
Does your magical path influence your work and if so in what way?
Yes it does as I like to make my own magical tools where possible . I also love to paint or make things that have some meaning.
Where do you find your inspiration?
My inspiration comes from nature or magic or through dreams sometimes.
Has your work changed over time?
Yes my work is constantly changing . When my work started to sell, a lot of it was art on wood or paintings on slate or stone, clip on dreadlocks, mad felt hats. I then started painting folk art on wooden animal shapes and goddesses and faeries, making magical candles , working with clay, painting pictures, making cards then magical tools, sprays, witch balls, Spirit dolls, wytches jewellery, pyrography, Halloween and Yule and Christmas things.
Is there a craft you haven’t tried yet that you would love to have a go at?
I am learning to sew at the moment but I would love to work with metals and use it to make jewellery and other tools . I would also like to work with glass and learn how to carve wood and do more pottery.
Are you working on something at the moment, or planning to make soon?
At the moment I'm painting goddesses and making altar or spell boards, having a go at making simple copper jewellery, but I have lots of ideas going forwards. I have taken a long break from my business because I lost both my Dad and my Dog with 3 months and lost my mojo because of the grief. I have just started to create again so at the moment my page may look a little sparse until I settle back into creating again .
Thank you again Karen, where can people go to find out more about your work?
My Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100064905871673