You can do it!


This is a snapshot from surface pattern designer Sophie Stock's inspiration board, one of the recent submissions to the Compendium. I hope you'll be just as brave and enter your creativity into the UPPERCASE Compendium of Craft and Creativity.

The entry form for this book project closes in a few days: Tuesday, March 31 at midnight MST.

You've got the rest of the weekend to pull together your images and answer the questionnaire. You can do it!

What is your life story, in one or two paragraphs? Who or what shaped your creative path?

I have always been creative from a young age and have great memories drawing and paining as a child. My mother was a big creative influence for me growing up, she was at university studying interior design whilst I was at primary school so it was very normal to have remnants of fabric draped all over the house and mood boards always scatted on the kitchen table. Me and my brother were reluctantly dragged to museums most weekends for my mum's design research. I look back at this time with great appreciation for the creative education my mum gave us, what I didn’t know at the time was the understanding and appreciation of art and design that I found at that age and it has stayed with me and shaped me as a creative person ever since. 

I studied Surface pattern design at UAL, London College of Communication. After graduating I worked in fashion buying for 2 years working alongside designers, buyers and suppliers, this experience has given me a good understanding of industry, fabrics, colours and trends. Working in these high-pressure environments has made me realise how much I miss creative freedom and craft, I missed drawing and wanted to create things that I couldn’t find in shops. Working with the ultra short life cycle of fashion garments was disheartening, so my aim was to set up my own studio and be able to be hands on in my designing and making of my fabrics, to be able to produce a well made and thought out product that will last the test of time, it feels much better on my conscience. 

My true passion is pattern design, being creative and being hands on in my pattern making and crafting of decorative surfaces.
What is the most challenging thing about a life in craft? The most rewarding?

The most challenging thing for me is time, and how best to manage it as a self-employed designer maker. Since having my daughter 2 years ago I have realised how precious my creative time is. On the days I am in my studio working I surprise myself how much I can get done, when time is precious it makes you get up and get it done. I work best to a deadline so I set myself deadlines and I have lists and post it notes everywhere to keep my time productive. When my daughter is asleep at night is my quiet time to sit and draw and reflect on the day with a cup of tea. Also learning to switch off and not thinking about my business 24/7 is hard, the guilt creeps in if I take a lunch break, but I have to motivate myself to take time out by going for a walk and re-programme my mind sometimes. 

The most rewarding thing about a life in craft is of course when you get positive feed back, just someone saying something nice about my designs really makes all the hours worthwhile. In the end my aim really is to make things that I find beautiful and interesting and if other people recognize that too then I am a very happy lady.

A few complimentary spots are available for those who can't afford the entry fee.

The entry fee of $75 goes towards the production costs. You'll receive a copy of the book as well (even if you don't end up being selected.) However, if the entry fee is a barrier to you, please 
email me so that I can see what you do and if your work might be a good fit for the book. 
Sarah MacNeill

"I earned a degree in architecture from Dalhousie University in 2005, but my unofficial design education has been life-long. As a child I made collages out of magazine scraps, designed and sewed my own figure skating dresses, and listened earnestly as my dad taught me the fundamentals of photography through the lens of his Nikon SLR camera. I am a visual thinker, an enthusiastic storyteller, and a chronic night owl. 

I currently work as a graphic designer, illustrator and photographer under my company name, Carte Studio. In 2009, I created another small company called Koo & Poppet, making soft animal toys from Japanese linens and upcycled wool, which I sell on Etsy and in a few retail locations. It seemed a natural marriage of two passions to begin illustrating these little characters, so that is what I've been doing for the past 3 years. In 2014, some of these illustrations came to life in the form of a game app, called Poppets. 

I go about life with my husband and two spirited daughters in a house amid trees, near a lake on Vancouver Island. I dream about the energy of New York City, the allure of Paris and the style of Palm Springs on an hourly basis."

What to support the project but aren't planning on submitting? Preorder your copy here!

Thank you.
Please share the call for entries with your friends and colleagues.
Who and what is UPPERCASE?

UPPERCASE publishes books and magazines for the creative and curious: products that spark the imagination and inspire creativity. The eponymous magazine was founded in 2009 by publisher, editor and designer Janine Vangool who continues to wear pretty much every hat imaginable. The quarterly print magazine is loved by subscribers around the world. Truly an independent magazine, UPPERCASE is supported by its readers through subscriptions and by a roster of stockists.
Copyright © 2015 UPPERCASE publishing inc, All rights reserved.

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