Sunday, January 13, 2008

Interview to K. Turple

Where does the name of your shop come from?

My shop name is fairly simple: Kay's K9s. Kay has become a nickname of mine. The initial of my first name is "K", and I always sign my work "K. Turple". The "K9s" part is just a clever way of spelling "canines" (meaning dogs), and it went along with my whole "K" theme so I used it!

Where do you work?
I have a room in my house that is devoted to my art. Needless to say I spend a lot of my time here! I work at a desk which is often very crowded with art supplies. The window in this room has a nice view of a ravine, so it gives me a sense of peace to look out of it. I'm normally working with a dog or two beside me (or often sleeping on my lap!).

Tell us about your start, was there any trigger to it?

I started sculpting a few years ago when my mother bought some polymer clay. I gave it a shot, and really enjoyed it. A year ago I discovered pictures of needle felted animals online, and I was filled with the desire to try my hand at that as well. I thought if I was terrible at it I could at least create little teddy bears to include with my sculptures. So I purchased a little kit to teach me the basics and ended up falling in love with felting. My polymer clay sculpting has taken a backseat to my Needle Felting, but recently I have started sculpting again as well.

How long have you been doing this?

I've been Needle Felting for about a year now. I started sculpting in polymer clay a few years ago. I have always had a love of arts and crafts though, so I have been creating things all my life!

What is your favourite material?

I spend most of my time Needle Felting, so I mainly work with wool roving. I use many different kinds of wool depending on the breed of dog I am creating. I try to mimic the breed's coat texture and colour. I use many kinds of wool: Romney, Merino, Corriedale, Alpaca, Mohair, etc. I also sculpt in polymer clay, and mainly use Prosculpt for that.

Where or how did you learn your technique?
I first learned the basics of Needle Felting from a kit that I bought online. The creative part of me doesn't care to follow instructions though, so I was changing things and customizing my creations from the very start. After that first dog I made, I really wanted to create more realistic looking animals. So I studied pictures of dogs and came up with my own techniques for creating miniature felted versions of them.

Is there something in your mind you would like to try next?

I really want to start felting other animals as well. I've mainly been creating domestic dogs (and the occasional cat), but I would really like to do all kinds of wildlife. I love animals and I love nature. I hope to start making wolves, foxes, bears, squirrels, raccoons, etc.

How long have you been doing this?
I've been Needle Felting for about a year now. I started sculpting in polymer clay a few years ago. I have always had a love of arts and crafts though, so I have been creating things all my life!

Is there any other place apart from Your shop at Esty and your site we can find your works?
On my website I have links to all the current places my work can be seen. As of right now, you can find Kay's K9s on my website, Etsy, Ebay, Dawanda, EBSQ Gallery, CDHM Gallery, Flickr, and Blogspot.

Website -
Etsy -
Ebay -
Dawanda -
Flickr -
Blog -

Is it a job or a hobby?
Creating my artwork is my job. I've been unable to work outside the home, so I work full time at creating my artwork. I absolutely love what I do, and I hope I am always able to continue creating my Needle Felted animals.

How much time do you need in average for your creations?

My dogs vary in how long it takes to create them, but it is usually between 10 - 25 hours a piece. The time depends on the breed, size, markings, pose etc. Most people have no idea that something so small could take so long to create. Needle Felting is very time consuming. Combine that with the fact that I am a perfectionist and it ends up taking days to finish a project. I do my best to ensure they are top quality.

What was your first dog creation and how started?

The very first dog I made was a Yorkshire Terrier. I made that from a kit I purchased online to teach me the basics of needle felting. The very first dog I made completely on my own was a little 1:12 scale Maltese. It turned out cute and got a decent price on Ebay. I was so excited!

What is the most difficult part to make of them?

The most difficult part of creating my needle felted dogs would be making them realistic enough that they closely resemble the customer's own pet. I love to do commissions for people, but it can be a challenge to create each little marking with exactly the right shape, size, colour and placement. I create my dogs in 1:12 scale, so the details are extremely tiny. My dogs are only between 1" - 4.5" tall, so sometimes it can be a challenge to replicate specific markings on such a tiny scale.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
I love dogs. I couldn't imagine my life without them. My inspiration comes from my own dogs. We have 3 of them currently: a Chihuahua, Chihuahua/Jack Russell mix, and a Jack Russell. They bring such joy to our lives. I know how much pets become a part of our lives, and how much they are missed when they pass.
We just recently had to put our 10 year old Yorkshire Terrier down because he got glaucoma and was in a terrible amount of pain. I know that it's important for me to have things to remember him by. I love being able to create miniature versions of customer's pets so that their animals will always be with them.

The crafting community is being growing in the last years, what do you think is the reason for it?

I'm sure the internet and online marketplaces has a lot to do with it. I love the convenience of being able to shop from the comfort of my own home, and I am sure many other people feel the same. It's fun to be able to browse shops on Etsy, or auctions on Ebay, or even photos on Flickr, and to be able to see what wonderful creations artists have made. I've sold my work to more countries than I can remember. That wouldn't be possible without online marketplaces that connect


audreybeads said...

What a great feature,really intresting to find out about how you create etc,well done.audreybeads

Moonlighting Creations said...

Great interview very interesting!
Great Job.

K. Turple said...

Wow it looks great Mariví!! You've done an awesome job. Thank you so much for featuring my work! =)

Silvia said...

Muy reveladora la entrevista, muy buenas preguntas.

marge said...

que cosas mas chulas haces esta xica, son muy bonitos los animalitos, muy buena entrevista aunque no lo he pillado todo,jajaja.
besos guapa

moonmystic said...

Very interesting and unique artform. Good luck.