Q&A | Former KC resident Maria Carluccio launches line of wall decalsBy STACY DOWNS
The Kansas City Star
JOB DESCRIPTION: Freelance illustrator and designer. The former Kansas City resident has created designs for Land of Nod and she recently launched a new line of wall decals called Wall Stories. See wallstories.com .
A. My apartment has a great view of the Hudson River and is really bright and sunny. I love being close to the river and living in a neighborhood where there are many trails and ponds. I find that I can really center myself better when Im close to nature. Since my apartment is a block from town and a block from a long trail, I feel like its the best of both worlds.
A. I lived in KC three years. I was hired by Hallmark at the time. Before KC I lived in Harlem, and it was hard back then to make ends meet and do my art. When I moved I felt like I could really slow down and spend time doing what I loved. I found a great community of friends and fellow artists. Its funny, I had a few friends from NYC who warned me Id be bored living out in the Midwest, but it was exactly the opposite. I really welcomed the change of pace and I found that I thrived.
A. Many years ago I started to collect ideas that I thought would be cool as wall decals. I kept thinking that I wanted to do decals really big so they looked like a huge collage-like wall mural. Then about two years ago I got a call from my now-partner Caron. She was interested in licensing my illustrations to do wall decals for her small business in Portland, Ore. The more we talked, the more I could see we had very different skill sets but pretty much the same mission. Im the creative director and she handles the marketing, sales, distribution and production.
A. I found a beautiful piece of wood by the river, where all the driftwood washes up. Its an old 2-by-4 from a piece of furniture, but its been painted a few times. When I picked it up and looked at it, I thought it looked like a landscape image, but later, when I got it home, I decided I would put three hooks in it and make it a coat rack.
A. Recently I discovered a great podcast called the Accidental Creative. Its an inspiring podcast for startup creative entrepreneurs. I also love a blog called Eye Likey, its illustration meets midcentury design meets fine artist. As far as magazines go, I love Uppercase. I always look forward to every issue. One of my favorite things to do when I need inspiration is to go to a Japanese bookstore in NYC (Kinokuniya). That stuff really gets me inspired but I have to watch my wallet or Ill spend every penny I have there.
A. I guess Id have to say my living room. I have a wall behind my couch with a collection of framed art/objects from different people I have known. Its eclectic, all different things that just work together. I always think how its like a patchwork of people and things that have come in my life. There is an old letter with a poem in it, sent to my dad. which I found after he died, a painting by my brother, a collage by my daughter, an abacus from my trip to Asia with my dear friend Jenny and so on. I love how objects remind us of people we care about.
A. I do collect objects, too many, probably. I wish I had more space to showcase my collections. I love ceramic objects but my shelves have reached full capacity. With limited space, I tend to collect smaller, less-expensive things like natural objects. A few years ago I wrote a blog about how human behavior relates to all things in nature (fiftytwoflowers.blogspot.com). I began collecting a lot of seed pods and leaves back then. You really dont need a lot of money to create beautiful collections, just a radar thats always on, seeking out interesting things.