Mosaic is always something I’ve wanted to have a go at. After reading this weeks creative corner interview with Janet Venture Mosaic. It’s high on my to do list again.
I am a mosaic artist working in Cockington, a craft centre in Torquay, Devon.
2. Tell us a bit about your business.
My business is mosaic art and craft. I make and sell mosaic items such as pictures, mirrors and coasters. I also do various commissioned pieces such as house and business names. Occasionally I will lead a community or school mosaic project. I also teach mosaic: I generally do this in the winter and spring months when business is quieter.
3. What made you start your own business?
I started working for myself from a studio in a craft centre in Cockington, Torquay, in April 2017, after taking Voluntary Redundancy from my job in housing and regeneration. Mosaic art had been a hobby for over 20 years, and for a long time I had wanted to do it as a business. So it seemed like the perfect opportunity and time to become an artist.
4. Did you have any formal training or are you self-taught?
Over 20 years ago a friend asked me to go with her to a five-week mosaic evening class. We made a mirror. My friend’s mirror is still under her bed half completed but I couldn’t stop! That was my training.
5. Explain your creative process.
I am inspired by my surroundings. Living by the sea, lots of my work is of the sea or the coastline. I also live and work in the beautiful countryside of Devon and nature never fails to inspire. My process simply involves sticking glass, tiles or the like, to wood and then grouting.
6. Describe your typical day.
I believe I am living the dream. Working for myself, doing what I love, in beautiful surroundings, within a fabulously creative community. I just have to continue to make it all work as a business! But I am determined to do this. I start work at around 7.30am and finish at around 6pm. Working 7 days a week. I make mosaic all day in my studio where people drop by to watch me work, sometimes buying a piece of art. When I get home I do my emails and try and keep on top of my social media.
7. What’s your biggest seller?
My coasters and fridge magnets are my biggest sellers closely followed by robins, particularly running up to Christmas. However my large mirrors are becoming more popular!
8. What have been the high and low points of running your own business?
I have been in business over a year now and I understand the rhythms of the year and how the seasons work. During the summer months the craft centre is very busy with tourists and locals, but during the winter it is very quiet, with very few people passing through. I wasn’t quite expecting the drastic changes. However I did find the winter became the perfect time to restock and teach.
9. What would be your top tips for running your own creative business?
The art business is really not an easy business to be in. To succeed you need to be constantly on top of your game as much as you can:
My first tip would be work hard! There really is no other way!
Second – use your social media. This is free and if you use it correctly it can really get you out there.
Third – talk to people who have already done what you want to do such as their creative business owners. Learn from their mistakes!
10. What are your aspirations?
My aspirations are firstly to properly succeed at making a living as a mosaic artist. Then I would like to develop a good business as a mosaic artist. I would like to be braver in what I create. Practically, going forward I would like to work more with Interior Designers on interesting joint projects and possibly have some of my mosaic work in prestigious galleries.
11. Where can we find you?
You can find me on the usual social media channels i.e. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter under Janet Ventre Mosaic.
M: 0742 555 9036
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