by Heidi Petite
This weeks Confetti Artist of the Week goes to the talented and beautiful SOPHIE TEA. Sophie's outstanding vibrant animal artwork reflects her free spirited personality. After only 18months since starting her project Sophie has become a pretty big deal and we have been watching her journey since day 1. Not only is Sophie super talented but she also inspires us with her colourful and glittery and Confetti style.
We caught up with Sophie for a little interview to get to know more about the world of Sophie Tea's creativity! I felt truly inspired by Sophie's interview, and i hope you do too!
When and where did you first start doing art and how did you develop into your style of painting with animal artwork?
I started painting 18 months ago, in India. I studied Business and Management and after I graduated, I set out on a travel adventure before I was due to start a job in London as an analytical consultant (BORE).
I was in Jaipur and I stayed in a hostel with loads of graffiti on the wall. I was running out of money so I asked the manager if I could paint in return for a free stay. He said YES. So, with little art experience, I painted a huge rainbow-cow on the kitchen wall (which to my surprise), turned out to be pretty good! I think it was because I was in such a good place and so inspired by the colours and the culture. It made me so happy; it was that day that just knew that an artistic path was one that I needed to take. The following morning I emailed my graduate scheme to decline their offer and I've been doing it ever since.
How would you say travelling influences your artwork?
Travelling has a huge influence on my artwork in SO many ways, from architecture through to the people I meet. I am in Los Angeles right now, and being 'The City of Angels', angel-wing artwork is pretty prolific here. I've decided to bring some ideas back to the UK during festival season. I am building a huge wooden angel-wing installation at Glastonbury with my own colourful twist! The biggest artistic influence that travel has on me is more implicit. I always create my best work when I'm in a good place mentally. Travel makes me happy, so I arrive home energised and ready to take over the world again!
What's your favourite animal you've done so far and why?
My favourite animal that I have painted so far would have to be my Psychedelic Lion, its my most colourful and expressive piece to date. I've also had the most response from it online, having a positive/happy influence on other people's lives is something I strive for.
We love you're use of colour! What does colour mean to you?
Colour is so important to me as an artist. I'm surrounded by a lot of artists in my studio in London, they all have stories and reasons behind why the paint/create what they do. About 6 months ago I was questioning my own artistic credibility because I was painted animals that I liked, YES, but for what purpose?! I wasn't until an idol of mine told me that my art and colour selection was a reflection of who I was as a person. I guess being an artist is largely about self-expression and sharing. My method of communicating to an audience is through colour.
How did working for the Gypsy shrine come about and do you feel that using glitter is also an art?
Being a part of The Gypsy Shrine team is SUCH a crazy story. Around 1 year ago i held a art-print giveaway competition. To win you had to share a picture of my work. Me and Jenna (the owner) have a mutal friend and when that friend shared my work I popped up on her facebook. At the time The Gypsy Shrine was a face paint company, so Jenna emailed me to see if I wanted to work some UK festivals, and who doesn't want to go to a festival for free right?! Anyways, 1 year on we have become best friends and she is one of my biggest inspirations as she is KILLING IT!
What advice would you give to any inspiring artists reading this?
My advice to inspiring artists is to JUST BLOODY DO IT! If you're a creative and you're driven, you are never going to be fully fulfilled in the 9-5. So rather than wishing your life away, do something about it. It will be rubbish at times, you will be skint, you will question every decision that you make, BUT if you're passionate, put in the hours consistently and believe in your worth, it's yours for the taking. Good luck!!!
Thank you Sophie, we will continue to follow your journey and we cannot wait to see what the future brings for you! <3