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Etsy Week: Tina Tarnoff

Shop: Tinatarnoff
Shop Owner: Tina Tarnoff
Snagged by: Autumn Kiss Necklace, pendant on chain

SDTC: Why do you love making art?

Tina Tarnoff: I love the feeling I get from creating something. I love thinking about art, creating a particular piece in my mind and then seeing it develop and come to life. Witnessing a form as it appears in front of me is always a great thrill. There is frustration involved; doubt in your abilities, fear, but there is a great pleasure once you conquer that. The joy of seeing the finished piece. I think what attracts me to Papercut Art in particular is very much the sense of building something, of sculpting and the clean-cut aspect of it. Making papercut art feels natural to me. I love the sense of movement and try to use it a lot in my art. I think that the most important thing I’m trying to achieve in my creations is the sense of freedom. The sense of a free spirit, of movement, of passion for life, nature and for one’s art.

SDTC: Who or what inspired you to start making it?

TT: It was the painting Portrait of Lady Hamilton by George Romney that actually made me want to create art myself. I was so inspired by the strokes of the brush, the colors and shading used to create the gentle shapes and voluptuousness of the woman’s curves that I had an incredible urge to pick up a pencil, a charcoal, a paintbrush and make my own portrait of Lady Hamilton. Which I did. And loved doing.

SDTC: Do you listen to any music in particular while crafting?

TT: I almost always listen to The Smiths for some reason. They make me feel elevated and full of energy (and a bit stubborn!), and I always sing along which is fun.

SDTC: What do you love about Etsy?

TT: I love the opportunity it gives to artists. It enables me to make a living out of something I adore doing. I also like the sense of community and family it provides. The help and the support one gets from the community are overwhelming. It’s also very ecologically conscious, innovative, modern and constantly developing. Etsy listens to what its artists need and want.

SDTC: Why should young artists use the site?

TT: Because it enables their art to become visible to a large public. And because of the great art community that you can learn from. I’m constantly in awe of the creativity of Etsy artists and am constantly inspired by them. I’ve learned so much about my art, about art techniques, promotion… I’ve also met so many great people, fellow artists and customers since I’ve had my shop on Etsy. It’s really been a great pleasure.

SDTC: What makes a handmade gift better than a store-bought gift?

TT: The fact that it’s handmade, which makes it unique and extra special. As I make handmade art myself, I can especially appreciate the amount of work and effort put into creating something handmade. So, if you need to get something extra special for someone, get a handmade gift!

SDTC: What is your homemade favorite Christmas/holiday gift you’ve ever given or received?

Wonderful pair of woolen gloves from Nepal given to me by my husband. Handmade, beautiful, so warm!

SDTC: What’s the favorite gift you’re giving this holiday season?

There is so much to choose from on Etsy. Maybe some wonderful handmade soaps and hand-bound journals.

SDTC: If one song could play every time you entered a room, what would it be?

Metal Heart by Cat Power (new version from The Greatest album). It’s dramatic, passionate and a bit sad.

SDTC: And, finally, what is your favorite holiday film to curl up and craft to?

I love the classic “It’s a Wonderful Life,” it reminds me of childhood (I used to watch it every year) and “A Nightmare Before Christmas” – wonderfully creative and so inspiring!

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