Every day at sunrise and sunset, the sky turns into a gradient of beautiful colors. Los Angeles-based textile artist Jen Smith (also known as Jen Ann handmade) captures this kaleidoscopic phenomenon in her nature-inspired embroidery art. She sews various landscapes and seascapes into puzzle-like sections using a variety of vibrant threads.
“I was raised in a creative family — my mom was a designer and my dad was a photographer,” Smith told My Modern Met. “I sewed and sewed from a young age, and although I ended up majoring in marketing in college, I continued to work with fiber well into adulthood… knitting and continuing to sew. But once I started embroidering about four years ago, everything fell into place. I love the feel and versatility of embroidery, and it’s also easy to take with you anywhere.
After balancing her day job with embroidery for several years, Smith finally decided to pursue her art full-time in 2019. Since then, she has created a variety of playful depictions of beaches, deserts and mountains. “Nature is my strongest and most consistent inspiration, and I love working with lots of bright colors,” she continues. “I usually start with a nugget of idea and sketches until I arrive at something that I feel drawn to creating. Often I draw several designs at once, let them marinate and I come back weeks or months later to refine them. Then I get out my embroidery floss to choose the colors, which is one of my favorite parts of the process.
Her creative practice not only creates original stitched artwork, but also helps others learn how to start embroidering through all-inclusive kits and downloadable designs. You can buy Smith products through her Etsy shopand stay up to date with the artist’s latest creations by following her on instagram.
Textile artist Jen Ann Smith creates colorful embroideries inspired by nature.
She divides her compositions into rows of visually pleasing colors.
My Modern Met has granted permission to feature photos of Jen Ann Smith.
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