Observing and learning from other artists is a huge form of inspiration to me. Artist is a broad term here, because I don’t necessarily mean painters, dancers and writers. I mean ALL “creative beings”; people who follow their heart and do what they love. Enter: The Creative Beings Series! (#creativebeingsseries)
I’ve decided to regularly highlight amazing creative people who do creative amazing things. So without further ado… I introduce a friend of mine since childhood, Andrew Steinbrecher. I hope he inspires you as much as he has me!
Who are you and where are you from/where do you live?
Hi, I’m Drew. I live in an old neighborhood in Cincinnati, Ohio called the Clifton Gaslight District. I moved here to attend college where I studied graphic design. I was born in Pennsylvania but grew up in a small town in Ohio. It’s very easy to live in Cincinnati. The low cost and easy living allow me to live a more bohemian life, have a savings account, and travel, which are all important to me. I wouldn’t be able to do that living in California or New York.
What is your medium? Tell us about your work.
I currently work with fiber, primarily fabric. Most of my pieces are art quilts which are meant to hang on a wall as opposed to a traditional bed quilt. I’m currently interested in how my surroundings, environment and nature can inspire me and how my male perspective affects my work relative to the female-dominated fiber art scene. Because I am self-taught, I often intentionally use the “wrong” techniques and processes. This brings a freshness to the finished pieces since I do not worry about creating a piece the “correct” way.
I have been crafty all my life. I was always cutting and pasting and making things. In high school art classes I discovered I had an interest and talent for design. I wanted to study fashion at university, but someone dissuaded me saying it’s a difficult and crowded field (I shouldn’t have listened). So graphic design was the next choice.
When did you find your specific creative/artistic calling or are you still searching?
At some point 5-10 years ago, somewhere on the internet, I discovered art quilts. Their deceptively simple aesthetic created by fabric caught my crafter/designer’s eye.
I knew the basics of sewing and using sewing machine, but art quilts scared me. I wanted to make one but didn’t know where to start and was too worried it would go horribly wrong. One night, after a few years of self-doubt, I decided to just shut up, let go, and finally do it. What I began that night became my first art quilt titled “Letting Go”.
Making quilts is the one and only thing I do where I don’t worry about or question my choices… it comes naturally and easily to me. It just took me 40 years to find that one thing.
What are 3 things you do everyday? Feel free to expand.
– Drink coffee… one of my favorite things to do every morning is walk a few blocks to the coffeehouse and get a cup of coffee. On the weekends I usually make it at home or get a latte at one of the hipster espresso places in town.
– Knit… I usually find time each day to knit at least a few rows of whatever project I’m currently working on. Right now it’s a cardigan for a friend’s baby who will be 1 year old in October.
– Waste too much time on the internet… at some point each day I get sucked in to the internet and before I know it way too much time has past.
What are your fondest memories as a child?
Any time my family would travel… from seeing relatives in Pennsylvania to several weeks in California… I loved it all. Traveling at a young age really gave me an appreciation for experiencing and appreciating different locations and people. It taught me important travel basics and gave me confidence to travel and live internationally by myself when I was in my 20s.
What is your favorite form of inspiration?
Traveling, urban decay, huge cities like NYC and London, crisp autumn days, dramatic coastlines where mountains meet the sea.
Best piece of advice for creative people or those searching for their “purpose”?
Just go for it and start. Don’t worry if it’s not good. Nobody has to see any work you don’t want them to. Don’t compare yourself to other artists… remember that you are seeing everyone’s self-edited best work on social media… you don’t see their mistakes or disasters.
Quote of the day or Favorite food/meal, you choose:
Korean is my favorite cuisine. I love dolsot bibimbap and kimchi.
If you weren’t an artist you would be…
A personal assistant for a celebrity.
Thanks for sharing your work and life Drew! You can check out Drew’s work at andrewsteinbrecher.com and follow him on Instagram @drewsteinbrecher. (Wish him a Happy Birthday, he celebrated this past week!) Also, if you are a “Creative Being” or know a “Creative Being” who should be highlighted, please send me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org!