Hello! I'm Elise and I'm the mind behind Elise Heather Designs. I am 30-something, a mum to three and recently my partner of 10 years and I were married. I am wildly passionate about my art and try to do something creative every day.
I am neurodivergent. Although this is not all I am, it does define a big piece of who I am. It also defines parts of my artistic process and how I perceive the world. My latest body of work Do I make you uncomfortable? explores societal misconceptions and how neurodiverse people are treated.
My favorite materials to work with are fabric, paper, yarn and paints. The texture of the materials I use is important to me. Not for the final product particularly but more for while I'm working with them. I am self taught in what I do and love to try out different methods of construction and finishes. I find it fun to problem solve on the fly when making a new piece, so I don't usually have a plan, just an image in my head of what I want to fashion then I just start making.
Professional accomplishments - Artist CV
The Full Story
Elise Heather Designs started life in late 2015 with an Etsy store, crossed fingers and a crazy woman. The shop consisted of a handful of woven tapestries photographed on random walls of a tiny house I shared with five other people and two dogs. Life was stressful and busy and my one escape was sitting down each night to cross stitch, weave or browse Pinterest for my next project.
By 2017 I had taken up macramé and had been asked if I could teach a small class in Ipswich. I knew nothing of teaching but dove in head first and really enjoyed the experience! Over the next couple of years I held a few workshops in various venues in Toowoomba as well as the dining room of our new and much larger home.
Macramé came back in a big way. Everyone wanted to learn, make and share. I found it really hard to find decent supplies and nice cord to use that didn't hurt the fingers or shed itchy fibres. Luckily I managed to track down a company called Industrial Yarns who where happy to supply EHD with good quality cotton cord at a good price. I will always recommend them to others. Their cord is made right here in Aus and is amazing to knot with.
I was happily cruising along with my little business; teaching, selling supplies, making kits and attending markets, when 2020 hit like a freight train. Overnight the world came to a standstill and my arty little bubble was popped. Covid-19 took over the world and our lives, putting an abrupted stop to classes. I was beyond devastated when my dining room was declared too small to safely social distance in. In amongst all the fright and turmoil I was offered a glimmer of hope in the form of some grant money. This allowed me to transform our rundown closed in patio into something amazing. My new studio space!
Textile Art Studio
My new studio was born and over the next few years I packed it to the brim with all the things I love. With space to learn and explore in, my arts practice started to evolve and grow in many directions. I started painting again and playing with new and imagined techniques.
Continuing to grow and evolve
2020 to 2022 was a blur. In that time I tried to marry my long time partner, Lionel, twice, we lost work, gained work, lost it again and caught the dreaded virus. I broke my ankle, had surgery and developed a dangerously large blood clot in my leg. I was out of action for months and unable to do much except sit and create. The one good thing to come out of this time was I was forced to sit with myself and focus on what I really wanted from my art.
I came to a conclusion; I no longer wanted to make macramé. I wanted to continue to explore my arts practice and branch out into the unknown. I wanted to exhibit, learn and continue to grow.
It still does not seem real... My first solo exhibition was at the beginning of 2023 at Rosalie Gallery in Goombungee. Pieces born out of self reflection, societal misconceptions and the wonder for all the tiny worlds held by minute creatures. A truly magical experience that I get to repeat in 2024 & 2025. So stay tuned for updates.
You can read about my solo exhibition Do I make you uncomfortable? on my blog and you can shop for individual artworks in my shop.