I discovered Lisa's blog, Lou Lou & Oscar after the show I curated at Gallery Hanahou last Feb. I immediately bookmarked it and have been hooked since. Since then I have had the pleasure of doing a trade with Lisa, talk to Lisa more frequently then a lot of other folks I have never met and feel like she is my long lost friend. I am a big fan of her work and can't wait to get her little guys in the shop. Her exclusive will be released March 1st due to my pending vacation. Anyone that orders them after the 3rd will have to wait a few weeks to get them in the mail. Either way, it will be worth the wait! Here is an interview I did with her.
S- What was your inspiration for this exclusive?
LL&O- The natural history of the Arctic, from auroras to lemmings, the ice bound and the aquatic. I could have created a hundred Fish Boys with polar characteristics, the Arctic region is such a fecund source of inspiration. I cannot help but project my imagination upon the mysterious terrain and the water beneath the ice pack, I often wonder about the creatures that may exist, undiscovered, in this realm. I haven't come to the end of my arctic adventure that's for sure. I am also interested in cryptozoology, secret histories and hybrid identities, the fish boy grew out of reading around these subjects I guess. Fish Boys are happy, fun-loving creatures, they love to read but don't really care for over-thinking. I am aware that I have become too close to my creations!
S- How did you start making plush?
LL&O- As a way to save my sanity when we moved to this tiny island off the coast of France! I inherited a sewing machine from my Step Mum and felt inspired to try and make some softies for my son, I really needed to do something creative, something that would result in an object that could be held and loved. My first attempts were pretty dire, I overheard my son saying "don't tell Mummy you don't like the robots", ha, yes they were supposed to be robots! I got hooked and just couldn't stop in spite of my early failures. I was lucky to come across some amazing work when I started out, that really pushed me to get better, aspiration, to try and make meaningful work.
S- Your site is so beautiful to view. It seems like you take a lot of time with your photos, writing, etc. On average, how often do you update your site? How has it influenced your art?
LL&O- Thank you for the kind words, I don't feel as though I deserve them, the site has fallen a little fallow and I am hoping to consolidate all of the virtual spaces I inhabit into one website this year. I got very caught up with my blog initially and spent more time planning posts than actually making things, always more ideas than hours in the day, sounds familiar I bet? It did come down in the end to a choice between creating/crafting and blogging, making things won out, I missed it. I noticed too that the quality of my posts had been declining, it upset me, posting for the sake of it, worrying about diminishing views, it all felt inauthentic and a little silly. I think the latter realization has lead me to revaluate my work as a whole, to ask why I make it in the first place, what am I trying to achieve through it, in this sense the site has influenced my work. I have gone from updating mostly everyday to maybe once every week at the most. I am trying to post only when I have something to say. I know my blog could be much better, I do take a lot of care with pictures, less care with writing. I find that writing comes relatively easily, the other stuff is much harder for me, which is why it excites me I think. I am hoping that some changes coming later this year will enable me to share a little more of myself. I am a nosy parker and love the glimpses of life behind the scenes that my favourite bloggers offer, I want to do more of this myself.
S- What are you looking forward to in this new year?
LL&O- This year is going to be full of change and upheaval for me and my little family, which I welcome. I can't give too much away yet but I know these events will have a big impact on my work. Sorry for being such a secret squirrel! I have a 'milestone' birthday coming up next month, it is really no different from any other day but I confess to feeling excited and scared about it. I can't wait to conduct a thorough remodeling of Lou Lou & Oscar, that is certainly on the cards, new creatures too, I have a whole book full that need to come to life. I am so looking forward to the shows I am taking part in this year, really jumping up and down with excitement. Last year I discovered that making work for a show gives you an almighty kick up the bum, deadlines, concentration, the attempt to become more technically adept in order to realize your mind's imaginings. So, yes, hooray for shows!
S- What are the top 5 albums in your music rotation right now?
LL&O- I am the worst person to answer this question, I can happily listen to the same album for months to the exclusion of everything else. All of these have cropped up recently.
For Your Pleasure-Roxy Music
Merriweather Post Pavilion - Animal Collective (I've been trying to love this but I don't, hoping it will grow on me, hasn't yet!)
The Madcap Laughs-Syd Barrett
Live At The Witch Trials-The Fall (everyday, forever!)