Tracy Fillion

i. I work as a: textile artist/clothing designer. I plant dye silk and weave cloth, then sew them into wearable garments, as well as a small line of linen basics.

ii. I do this creative work because:
I love and need to work with my hands. Integrating craft traditions old and new is so gratifying and meditative.

iii. Personal qualities that help me in my work are:
I can work long hours by myself, perfectly content, while multi tasking and meeting deadlines, which feels good. Accepting and learning from failures allows me to be open to try new things.

iv. The greatest challenges around doing this work are:
I’m not much of a business person- an integral part of this work! I’m challenged regularly with the fact that I’m putting stuff out there in this fragile world – this is a real struggle.  My work is starting to shift a bit in a direction that will ease that.

v. Creative childhood hobbies:
Started with making pots out of muck & building structures out of sticks, then sewing clothes, paper mache & making odd installations as a teen….  So many weird/bad gifts for my family and friends.

vi. Other creative who inspire you:
My friends! So many of which will be at Shiny Fuzzy Muddy.  Also Louise Bourgeois, Margaret Kilgallen, Issey Miyake, Annie Albers, Ruth Asawa, and so on, I also love traditional folk art.

vii. Training that has helped me in this career:
Riding my bike up Rogers Pass in a light snow storm when I was 21. Between the ages 20-23 I did a bunch of travelling as well as a very big work project. I think this prepared me to push myself out of my comfort zone and work hard. I also took courses in textiles and pattern drafting.

viii. A common trap that can hurt people in this career:
I think going over budget. I’ve always kept this business small and my overhead low; I think if I hadn’t it would no longer exist.

ix. Some proud career moments:
I’ve had little snippets in publications and participated in design shows amongst artists I greatly admire. When I receive messages and comments from customers about their pieces they wear constantly it really makes my day.

x. If you want to work in my field, I suggest that you: 
Be prepared to hustle, be ok with failure, take risks, don’t be precious about your ideas and go for it, (without breaking the bank.)

xi. A professional goal I have for the future:
To become more eco sustainable and collaborate with other artists.

xii. If you want to see my work:
Go to Shiny Fuzzy Muddy at Heritage Hall Dec 14&15 and We Are Stories Website for the online shop and a list of retailers.


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