Artist Colony // Corrie Beth Hogg
A little something for the crafter, the plant lover and the darkest of black thumbs.
I may be a little obsessed with Corrie. I am in love with the indoor plant trend and can't wait to make my new room an indoor forest. Thing is, a Chicago winter mixed with my plant care etiquette is not a very good idea. But guys!!! Corrie has the answer! She makes PAPER PLANTS. This is the moment when the angels start to sing and everything makes sense. Of course! Paper plants are un-killable AND fun to make make. You can find Corrie's website here, her DIY blog here, and her Instagram here.
Hi! Introduce yourself. How are you? I’m great! Thank you! I’m Corrie Beth Hogg, a maker of things… most recently paper plants. But, I enjoy working in a variety of mediums: paints, fabric, paper!
Explain your job in one sentence. My day job... I work for an event design and production firm, I work on all the handmade stuff for our company, that could mean a centerpiece for a wedding or a wall made out of folded paper. On my own time, I make paper plants! (And, whatever else sparks my interest!)
What projects have you been working on lately? I just finished my paper maiden hair fern, which was a lot of fun and I like the way it turned out. Next, I am making a giant monstera deliciosa.
How did you come up with the idea to create paper plants? It all started because I wanted a fiddle leaf fig tree in my living room, which is quite dark. A ‘real’ one would never survive. I decided to try making one out of paper. I made the trunk and branches out of dowel rods and paper mache and the leaves out of paper painted on one side. After that, I’ve been having a lot of fun trying to figure out how to make other plants.
Who and what inspires your work? I find a lot of inspiration at the park and botanic garden near my apartment. I feel lucky to live just a 10 minute walk from both. I spent a lot of time wandering around taking pictures with my phone of plants: the underside of leaves, where the branches connect, buds, and flowers. I reference those photos when I start on a new project in my studio.
What would you say was the biggest turning point in your career? I don’t know if it was a turning point in my career, so much as a turning point in my thought process. Several years back, I made a conscious decision to try to be brave and step out of my comfort zone. The first time I did that - when I quit my job and went to work on a organic farm, I was so scared. I ended up learning a lot about myself and how to take on things that may seem daunting at first, how to set a goal and break it down into mini-goals.
What is your design process? Like I mentioned above, it starts with finding inspiration at the garden. Then, I spent a lot of time looking at images of plants online. When I start playing with paper, I typically make several leaf samples before I decide on a method.
What did you want to be when you were a kid? An artist. As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be an artist. There was a brief moment when I wanted to be a biologist - and I still enjoy science, but making things is what makes me happy.
If you could only choose one plant to create for the rest of your life, what would you choose and why? Oh! Haha! I don’t think I could ever pick just one. I like too many! But, begonias are interesting, there are so many varieties from pink to black to polka dotted. That could keep me entertained for a while.
What do you like to do in your spare time? I sing and play guitar, I really like classic country music from the 1920s. I also take a swing dance class once a week with my boyfriend. We go on lots of hikes with friends and out to see live music.
Black or green thumb? Mostly green! But it has been so hot in NYC lately that I lost a few. My heart breaks a little when that happens.
Can you give some advice for anyone that wants to pursue a career like your own? What skills do you think are necessary? A career as a crafter? Practice and more practice. I would also suggest taking classes - even if it is just a weekend course, you can grow leaps and bounds when you get help from someone who is a master at a certain skill. I still take classes even though I know how to make a variety of things. There is always more to learn. Once you have a mix of skills under your belt, they are like tools in your tool box, so when you are approaching a new project, or new idea, you have options as to how you can get it done.