Meet Penny Ferguson of Min Pin Shop

A Passion for Patterns

Meet Penny Ferguson of etsy's Min Pin ShopAs part of our series of interviews with etsy makers we connected with Penny Ferguson of Min Pin Shop, a vibrant Melbourne artist making waves with her quirky designs.

Min Pin Shop is the 2016 etsy Awards Winners for the Art Illustration and Paper Design Prize.

What brought you to making in the first place?

I had always been drawing, designing and making things as a kid, but after studying Art and Design at University I knew I wanted to pursue a career in that field.

I worked as a freelance illustrator for a while and dabbled in exhibition curation, but found I could make all sorts of things that I love doing (branding, curating, illustrating, jewellery making, sewing etc) and pour it all into Min Pin.

Do you believe sustainability in design and making is just as important as the creation itself?

Of course! I have always hated the idea of fast fashion - buying cheap, unethically made clothes and accessories every week because your old outfit is out of fashion.

With Min Pin, I strive to create works that are loved and kept forever because they are unique and special. I am also mindful of the packaging I use and whether it is necessary/can be recycled.

Your love for surface design is obvious with your work, what drew you to it originally?

I am not sure about that one! I really like learning new things so I think I got into making tessellating patterns a while back and enjoyed the challenges that came with that.

Who inspires you artistically?

So many people! Here are just a few of my favourite designers and illustrators: Misaki Kawai, Ginette Lapalme, Kirsten Perry, Html Flowers, Patrick Doherty, Abby Portner, Mogu Takahashi, Stanley Donwood... the list goes on and on!

Find Creatively Belle jewellery at The Rocks Markets in Sydney and online

What does compassionate design mean to you and how does it influence your work?

To me, compassionate design is design motivated by passion and love as opposed to money and trends. Obviously there are some blurry lines there but I definitely gravitate towards work that is made with enthusiasm. I think that's where the best ideas come from.

What are your 5 tips for creating patterns?

1. Find motifs based on subjects you are interested in

2. Photoshop or Illustrator helps with placement

3. See how the design looks both far away and close up

4. Grids can be handy but aren't necessary

5. Have fun!

See more of Penny's work online:

Visit the Min Pin Shop on etsy, Facebook and Instagram.

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