Even as a child, I loved making various things and dreamed of being an artist or designer of some sort. Several great summer camps with inspiring arts and crafts directors introduced me to basketry, weaving, beading, soap making, paper making, embroidery, ceramics, print making, nature crafts and more.
As a teenager, in the late 60’s, I was inspired by the street artists on Telegraph Ave. in Berkeley, California with their leather crafts, tie dye, batik, patchwork and psychedelic music posters and graphics. My parents allowed me to paint the garage walls with gigantic zodiac signs personalized for each member of our family. It remained there for 20 years! I always had projects going on and so did my parents. As retail florists and business owners, they were artists and entrepreneurs by trade. I am sure their example enriched my artistic journeys.
I earned my BA in Art with an emphasis in Textile Design from Whitworth University in Spokane, WA. After moving to Portland, OR, I worked at Wildflower Fibres, a weaving and spinning supply store. I was so fortunate to have a job surrounded by inspiring artists, materials and ideas on a daily basis. As a young mother, busy with my children, I managed to do varied commission work. I was a graphic illustrator, created large woven wall hangings, worked as a custom picture framer and taught art classes at the community college and parks department. By the early 80’s, I had my own line of hand painted clothing, Dana Murphy Designs. Of course, all of these diverse “creative skills’ were put to good use for Halloween costumes, birthday party decorations, school musicals, Girl Scout leadership and helping me to be a well rounded creative mom!
Loving to teach, I went back to school for my MA and teaching license. I taught for 20 years in Special Education and to English Language Learners. Busy enough with teaching, I put most of my creative projects on hold…..but now I am back! I have retired from teaching and am starting up again with artistic pursuits in textiles and wearable art pieces. If you read this whole thing, thanks for sticking with me! It was a fun sentimental journey….Dana
Once again, I am enjoying some favorite creative projects. Adventures in Textiles!
(posted August 2012)
I have been experimenting and creating things since I was a kid. My parents put up with my constant messes and projects…(and fortunately, I have a very patient husband, too.) I have enjoyed beading, basketry, leather work, sewing, spinning, weaving, dyeing, crochet, needlework, ceramics, felting and painting (just to name a few). The painting has ranged from wall murals to stage sets to wearable art. I love trying new things!
Just today, I finished a fabric collage garden banner. I had so much fun combining the mixed media collection (hand painting, vintage linens, refashioned pieces from our local thrift store and I even managed to get a favorite quote from Bob Marley, ” Sun is shining. Weather is sweet. Make me want to move my feet.”
This fall and winter I have been busy designing fingerless gloves from recycled felted wool sweaters (also slippers, hats and leg warmers). As spring approaches watch for more of my hand painted cotton clothing for infants, children and adults with light floral designs. These clothes are machine washable and comfortable to wear. I hope you see something you like!
The Personalized Hand Painted Growth Charts are available, too.
wool, natural fibers, cotton, hand painted, recycled, refashioned, vintage linens, collage, mixed media
“Adventures With Textiles” Collage, Felting, Mixed Media, Hand Painting, New and Refashioned Clothing