Guest Designer - Anna Dabrowska - Pekocka

This week I have a treat for all of you! I have several guest designers willing to share what makes them "create well" with us. So, keep tuned in this week to be totally inspired! Finn will start us off with her brilliant whimsy and artistic style. Finn designs for The Color Room, Creative Therapy, Scrapki.Pl, Lemonade Scrapbooking, and Tattered Angels.

My name is Anna Dabrowska - Pekocka, but on the net I tend to use my nickname – Finnabair or Finn to make it shorter. I’m 30 at the moment, working full time in a local Cultural Center as a teacher, PR worker and many many more in one ;) I live in Warsaw, Poland, with my dear, supportive husband – Jedrek, who understands my passion. I love photos, new challenges in my life and a cup of black tea somewhere nearby;)

How did my adventure start? I've tried several techniques - like decoupage - but at the end of 2007 I found information about scrapbooking and in 2008 I made my first pieces – I fell in love. Next step was trying some altered art and mixed media - and my love got even deeper! Now I'm totally addicted - especially to layouts.

How would you describe your scrapbooking style? What makes your style your own?

My style... I'm not sure if we can name it a “style” but I'm a totally moody scraper. I create different layouts starting with grungy, eclectic through eclectic and freestyle and finishing on detailed mixed-media canvases and altered projects. It all depends on my current mood or source of inspiration. If I have to say which things are typical for my projects I'd say it is using of different medias – Glimmer Mists, gesso, gel mediums, inks combined with machine stitching. I'm love with found objects, specially metal ones and I usually incorporate them into my creations and I prefer making my own, custom background for the page.

What inspires you to be creative?

My inspiration is everywhere: I love to collect everyday object and than giving them “the second chance” somewhere on my canvases or paper layouts – their textures, shapes, colors are an endless source of inspiration. I think I am creative just because it is may way of life, I can't stop thinking about creating, even when I'm tired there are some ideas coming to my mind. I just don't stop it and let it happen:) If you let yourself to have fun, look at the world with your eyes wide open – there's no other possibility – you have to be creative:)

Who are your favorite scrapbook designers and why?

I'm not sure if I can really name my favorite designers. I watch lots of people creating, I follow many blogs, but to be honest – I'm more inspired by single projects than the whole blog or gallery content. If you had asked me this question a year ago I'd probably said that I love Tim Holtz, but now my horizons are much wider and I could name many people who amaze me with their ideas and skills. I've got a very long blog list to read and I try to visit them all although it is impossible.

What are your favorite color combinations to design with right now?

That is one thing that is not changing in my project – I love black and white set of colors. They are always my base, start for adding more – sometimes it is only one color, sometimes a full palette, but I prefer monochromatic projects.

What is your creative process?

My creative process usually starts with the idea coming to my mind – sometimes it is a full project, ready to convert it into a page or canvas and sometimes it is just a small “flash” of the technique or embellishment I'd like to use. Usually when I know I should use a particular color set or material I keep “processing” the image in my head as long as I need to make sure I am ready to start. The final effects are sometimes a big surprise though – usually a nice one. It is because something “happens” on the way which changes the project - it may be an accident, a thought or a next inspiration coming. Sometimes I need really a long time to finish the creation I kept in my mind – the idea may wait months for the realization.

What is your story that you are trying to tell? How can this inspire others?

There are many different stories behind my works: as I said before I am a moody artist and scraper so most of the time the creations are the impressions of that I feel at the moment or visualizations of some memories, ideas and plans. I hope people watching them can see that creating is fun for me, it is a way of expressing myself and giving a piece of my heart to others. I think the need, the feeling is the best reason for creating and as long as you feel pleasure doing this it means it is all as it should be.

How can you inspire others to "create well"?

Being creative is a decision, a way of life - make sure it is really important and fun for you. If you are true to yourself, if you create in they way you feel - then it will have the biggest value both for you and for the others. Just be yourself – it is the only possibility to create well – and often :)

You can see more of Finn's work on her blog and follow her on Facebook.

Create Well: Just be yourself!


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