us a bit about your background -- what led you into art?
I've been drawing my whole life, but never considered anything
art-related as a career until I took a graphic design class in high
school. I quickly fell in love with design and enrolled in the
Minneapolis College of Art & Design, where I planned on majoring in
graphic design, until my love of drawing by hand coerced me into the
illustration program. I just recently graduated with a BFA and am
continuing my freelance illustration business.
inspires your designs?
I am always most inspired by nature -- my boyfriend and I frequently go
on outings to places like local forests, rivers, lakes, swamps, and so
on, and these adventures frequently form the basis for future work for
me. I love noticing small details and anomalies in the natural world,
and spotting traces of nearby animals, whether it be a giant beaver dam
or the tiny scuffs on fallen logs from deer hooves. I am most awed by
the reciprocal relationships between all the life forms in a given
ecosystem, the fact that they coexist so fluidly and are so dependent on
us a bit about your design. Is there any story behind it?
I've created two pieces about this character, Harvey the Chipmunk. He
lives in a little house made of sticks and bark, and he spends all of
his time (especially in autumn) greedily collecting seeds and nuts to
keep him fed through the winter. He buries them, strings them on lines
through his backyard, and stuffs so many in his little house that it's
near busting and he has to tie his door shut! The image that the
embroidery is based on is called "The Last Acorn of Autumn," and it
shows Harvey and a squirrel standing on either side of the last acorn of
the season, having come across it simultaneously and facing an imminent
your studio/workspace like?
It's a small, sunny room with the windows open whenever possible and
currently a robin is sitting on her nest right outside the southern
window. I am an avid collector of small nature artifacts like bones and
shells and dried plants and things, as well as dusty old objects I find
in antique shops and at garage sales like old medicine bottles and cigar
boxes and wind chimes, and my studio is packed with those sorts of
things. Probably my favorites of the lot are my taxidermy pheasant, a
bat specimen preserved and suspended in a clear acrylic block, an old
shipping crate for Krakus ham (lovingly nicknamed Hambox), and this
weird creepy clay cat wind chime I found. Together, all the things I
fill my studio with keep me happy and inspired and excited about the
world in general, and of course serve as reference for the work I create
that is more detailed and realistic.
your favorite handmade craft you’ve ever made?
I'm getting into hand embroidery and creating plush toys and ceramics,
but only whenever I have free time, which is pretty rare -- so I haven't
created anything I'm too happy with yet! However, I've made a lot of
kind of strange decorative pieces that I'm quite fond of -- one corner
of my studio wall is adorned with two wooden hangers with old keys and
driftwood tied to them and dangling below, and doilies mounted to the
wall behind them.
Finally, if you were a Crayola crayon, what color would you be?
A Caucasian skin tone so that all the kids can stop coloring people
yellow like the Simpsons. (I suppose they probably have fleshy tones
now, but they never did when I was a kid!)
If you’d like to find more of
Teagan’s work, you can check out her
grab some of it for yourself off