Printmaker and crafter Sandra Waine hails from the seaside suburb of Devonport in Auckland, where she works from her home studio creating her bright and distinctive prints, stationery and gorgeous tea towels.
What do you make?
My craft is lino prints, screen-printing textiles, hand printed cards, hand carved rubber stamps.
How did you get into your craft?
Growing up my sister and I were always drawing and making things. We even ventured into making Fimo (polymer clay) brooches and selling them at our Auntie’s stall in Manurewa.
While living in Sydney in the ’90s, I made hand painted cushions and crafted photo frames which I sold at the North Sydney and Balmain markets, while also working fulltime. On our return to New Zealand my amazingly creative Auntie (also a printmaker and painter) encouraged me to enter the printmaking section of the Royal Easter Show. Being a mum it was great to get back into the swing of creating, so it’s been non-stop ever since.
Your favourite materials, tools and processes?
I love my lino tools! Cutting into a new block of lino or stamping rubber – what fun! Whether I’m block printing or screen-printing I do love “inking up” and printing that first image. And I do of course love printmaking inks, beautiful paper and fabrics.
Five words that describe your mind:
Busy, while trying to appear calm and organised. Constantly thinking about things I could make when I should be thinking about making dinner!
Do you have formal training or qualifications in your craft?
It was during our time in Australia (while I was working full-time), I attended night school at North Sydney TAFE completing a Fine Arts Certificate. Included in this course was printmaking which re-established my love for this craft.
Is there a philosophy behind your work?
I guess the reason I like to create is it is rewarding – soul food – part of who I am. I love the process from when something inspires me to the final piece. The real bonus is when other people find enjoyment from my creations.
What inspires you?
Life! Our children, our cats, nature, the beach, emotional events – the list is endless.
Describe your work space:
I am incredibly fortunate to have a designated area in our house for creating. This room crosses over as an office as I work part-time doing accounts, it also houses my printing press – which I love! Of course the biggest challenge is keeping my space organised as I share it with my very creative husband (musician). I do still use the kitchen table a lot as it is the hub of the house and works well when the kids are about.
What are you currently listening to?
As our six year old daughter Connie has just discovered the joy of owning her own CD I am constantly listening to Now 36. It gets you in a boogie mood even if you don’t feel like going there.
Recommend an album:
There are so many albums I love. Being a true kiwi girl Dave Dobbyn has always been one of my favourite musicians (having grown up with Th’ Dudes and DD Smash). I would definitely recommend his last album Anotherland. Jeff Buckley is another amazing musician who tragiacally died too young aged 31. His album Grace is well worth the listen, with an incredibly moving version of Leonard Cohen’s song Hallelujah.
Your favourite childhood book?
I can’t recall just one childhood favourite, but I definitely had lots of books with gorgeous pictures of cats and horses. I do still have my ’70s (showing my age here) A to Z of Handicrafts and a Sandie Annual from 1975.
What are you reading now?
Currently I am reading Keith Richards’ book Life which I brought for my hubby (what other Christmas present is there for a musician). It is a great read, and a nice change from my usual murder/mystery novel.
Do you have any pets?
Yes, two cats. Lucy, who is 16, and Felix, who is 8 months old. Another cat was not going to be an option while we still had Lucy but Connie’s teacher brought her homeless kittens into the classroom and I was spun the best story ever by our lovely daughter (who was 5 at the time).
If you were a crayon, what colour would you be?
Yellow! It’s such a happy and bright colour and I always remember loving yellow when I was a young girl.