As part of the ‘Young and Creative’ Series SOON interviewed Ewan Bodenham, a Science student from London, who spends his free time up-cycling second hand clothing with hand embroidered designs.
Introduce yourself and your work.
My name is Ewan Bodenham, I’m 20, a Natural Sciences student at UCL and my work consists of hand embroidered designs on clothes. My designs are often natural forms such as plants, but are sometimes more abstract designs. Doing a science degree is great, but I find it doesn’t often give me a chance to think for myself, so embroidery is really a means of being creative and expressing my ideas. It’s also a great way of justifying lazing around, because at least then I’m being productive in some way.
How long have you been making art?
Only since January 2017. I’d never tried doing embroidery before but asked for a few bits to give it a go for Christmas and have been doing it when I find the time to since then. I’ve not had any lessons or watched any videos on how to do it, I just give it a go and see what works and what doesn’t.
Describe your work in three words.
Hit and miss.
Describe the way you work in three words.
The way I work in 3 words… Think, sketch, stitch!
What’s your favourite colour?
How long do you spend on each piece of work?
It varies greatly- some pieces take a couple of weeks, others I can start and finish in an evening.
What’s your favourite environment to work in?
I do embroidery to relax so normally just in my bedroom, listening to music or talking to friends.
Who inspires you?
James Merry. I started embroidery because I wanted one of his pieces but couldn’t afford one, so I tried my hand at making a poor man’s version for myself. Since then I’ve gone on to try out a few of my own ideas, mainly using Instagram for inspiration.
What’s your favourite piece of work you’ve ever made?
Probably the first piece I made- the fuchsia growing around the umbra logo. It let me try out a bunch of different techniques and I think it came out looking really nice.
Where would you like to be in 10 years time with your work?
I don’t see it ever being more than something I do for my own enjoyment, but I’d definitely like to see my work get more complex and neat with time.
What’s your ‘Something Out Of Nothing’? One of life’s simple pleasures that you absolutely love…
I love being on a beach. The sound of waves, the feeling of sand and the smell of sea spray all make me really content and appreciative of our planet.