Welcome to our improved featured series we will be running focusing on geeky creatives in not only cosplay but also art, music, and writing. We will be interviewing and showcasing these amazing creatives and how they got to where they are now. It’s important to support your local and up and coming creatives. They are the backbone of our wonderful community and one of the main reasons we continue to grow and thrive like we do today. If you would like to be considered for a future feature, please contact us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
With that being said, we would like to introduce you to our first feature and amazing creator, Erica of Pixelated Comfort! Starting out in cosplay, she has taken her artistic skills to the next level designing quilts with a pixelated, geeky flair. We got the pleasure of chatting with her and how it all got started…
About how long have you been creating quilts?
I have been making quilts over the span of 5 years, which is so crazy to think. Though I have been completely dedicated to quilting just these past two years!
What inspired you to start Pixelated Comfort?
I originally got into quilting when I wanted to get a gift for a close friend of mine who loved video games (specifically Megaman) but everything I found online was either very commercialized or lacking in that special, warm quality that really makes a gift feel personalized.
That’s when I decided to make a quilt, it was homemade and pixel art was an easy transition into patchwork. It took a lot of hard work, and I made a lot of mistakes… but through frantic caffeinated nights it was finished. I was absolutely floored by the response of my friend (who is now my husband, if that speaks into the power of homemade quilts). He loved it and it was truly the look of someone receiving a gift they’ve never seen before. It quickly became my go to gift for my friends and family, who all shared in the love of video games.
Soon I had requests coming in from friends of friends and then from people I didn’t even know.
I think that’s when I realized that there were people like me seeking the same thing, wanting to gift their loved ones something just as unique and special as them. That’s when Pixelated Comfort was born.
Looking back, how have you grown from that first quilt to now?
The first quilt I made definitely had a lot of love in it but just lacked so much technical knowledge on how to make quilts. I used to hand cut each square with scissors and now I have a whole rotary cutter to help me make the squares nice, neat and even.
I think design wise I’ve also grown a lot, it’s one thing to just put a character on a quilt with a solid colored background but now I try to create pixel backgrounds custom to each quilt to really make the whole piece unique.
What has been your favorite quilt-making experience so far?
I would have to say the Hydralisk from StarCraft! I was working with just an incredible girl who let me have all the creative freedom in the world, I think her having so much confidence in my ability really allowed me to create something so gorgeous!
I actually gave it to her in person and got to see the reaction from her and her boyfriend, that experience I really hold close in my heart. She then took time to later message me and just talk to me about the value of my work and helped build my confidence in my business, her advice and words really meant so much from another creator like her.
What kinds of characters are you most drawn to when looking for a new design?
Design wise, I love unique silhouettes and vibrant colors. For example, Blizzard Entertainment and Legend of Zelda characters are so rich with colors and just a vast amount of interesting character designs.
What has been your favorite and/or most difficult quilt to create so far?
My favorite quilt is actually my most recent one I made, which is Tyrael from Diablo. It was the largest and most complex design I have made to date but it was such a fun challenge to break through my old limitations. The feedback I got on that quilt was extraordinary and I even got shared by some Blizzard employees, which blew my mind!
Do you have any dream designs that you are, or will be, working on? Why is this a dream of yours?
Hilarious enough, I’ve been making quilts for so long and haven’t found the time to make the one design I wanted for myself. Which is, a Bioshock quilt with a Big Daddy and little sister. I’m such a huge fan of that whole game, I think when it came out it was pretty groundbreaking game design and story. Hopefully one day I can pull myself away from other projects and make my dream quilt come true!
What has been your biggest motivation throughout your journey?
There are definitely hard days, I probably doubled the work hours of any other job I’ve had. The biggest motivation for me is the person on the other end, receiving the quilt. People who order quilts tell me why they chose this special character for their significant other or about memories they have shared around the videogame. I’ve been lucky enough to see some reactions in person and it just melts my heart every time. If things ever get hard, I just remember that this is the only job I want to do, for the real genuine joy it can bring!
How has quilt making influenced you as a person?
Quilting has really made me come out of my comfort zone, putting my work out there, communicating with fellow artists and getting advice. The whole quilting experience has made me a way more confident in my work and my ability to take on new challenges!
Do you have any advice/words of wisdom you would like to give to aspiring creators?
All I want to get across to other aspiring creators is completely go for whatever you’re chasing. Things won’t happen overnight, there are times it will be uncomfortable and stressful but when you work at something you love it becomes something incredible and worth all the struggle!