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Nimue Creation Step by Step

A few months ago I wanted to write about the creative process either in general or the particularities related to a specific topic in progress. And as these articles are acclaimed by many of you, I continue…

In this part of the site you will therefore find articles that tell how a creation is developed step by step, mixing technical, economic and poetic questions.
And above all, do not hesitate to leave your comments at the end of the article. Good reading !

Become an Embroidery Designer 2

become an embroidery designer

Part 2: IDEE takes power

This story of software dedicated to embroidery excited me. I’ve loved computers for a long time. I have always been fascinated by publishing, by being able to do at home what is normally reserved for professionals. It is a huge power to independently create clean and well-presented documents. I tell you very honestly: without this digital dimension I would probably never have done this job.

Everything had suddenly turned into cross-stitch before my eyes.

October 2001, Les Rencontres Artistiques de l’Imaginaire, Hôtel Dieu, Toulouse.
Organized by Pascal Ferry, painter of the imaginary and founder of Sidh & Banshees editions, this show brings together the best painters, illustrators and writers of the imagination in France. With in addition some entities like us Centre de l’Imaginaire Arthurien stronghold of the literature of the imaginary in Brittany. I have with me an embroidery in progress, mirabilia I think, on a dark caramel colored canvas. I was so addicted that I couldn’t imagine going anywhere without my little embroidery…
Our stand set up, the show begins with its flow of visitors. I decide to go around the rooms to arrive in front of the space of Zephir d’Elph (painter of Guinevere). I look at his paintings closely and it is as if everything had suddenly turned into cross-stitch before my eyes. I saw them in cross-stitch. I was entering another dimension. My reality was turning into little colorful crosses.
I knew at that moment what I had to do. I was quick to ask her if she would accept that I interpret her paintings in embroidery. She said YES. A little further on there was Sandrine Gestin with La Clef, La Reine des Fées,Galadrielle, etc. Same question: “Would you accept that I interpret your paintings as cross-stitch?” YES. That weekend I surveyed all those who proposed works that I would like to embroider and all without exception said YES.
I had in my hands my embroidery in progress which allowed me to convince them about the technique and its finesse.
I had, spreading out before my eyes, all the images and all the people who were going to be part of my future: Erlé Ferronnière, JB Monge, Séverine Pineaux, Carmelo de la Pinta, Sophie Busson,etc. And although I already knew them all and even very well for some, to see everything gathered in one place intensified the inspiration and the feeling of being on the right path.
Note that at this point in the story I don’t even know myself if I’m able to create anything…
But I probe. I am looking at the possibilities.
During the two days of the show I knew that I had to act quickly, that I had to be focused, that this moment would not happen again and that I had to build relationships immediately. Be strategic so as not to regret.
The show ends, a dazzling breach in my personal space-time. The six-hour drive back to Brittany will allow me to structure my thoughts and ideas. Everything is set up or put in its place. My decision is made: my new job will be to create cross-stitch embroidery.
I wish everyone to live moments of grace like this. I felt like I was floating in an obvious.

I had, spreading out before my eyes, all the images and all the people who were going to be part of my future.

What happens after that is only technical and organizational: market research, forecasting, etc. I am hardly exaggerating.
November 2001. To confirm my idea, I go to Paris to the Salon Création & Savoir-Faire,feel the vitality of the market and ask some questions. I want to know if anyone else is already navigating on the topics I envisage namely the imaginary and the fantastic. Nothing on the horizon…
I also want to know which software to use. Today they are all or almost free but at the time no! We should not be mistaken. I got cleanly rebarred by almost everyone. Most became friends afterwards but at that moment it was: “get by, no one helped us”.
Fortunately I arrived at Christelle Petiot’s Filanthrope stand and she offered me this mini Grail namely a software name and even a comparative study done on site. Forever Thank you Christelle!
December 2001. I tell my employers that I will leave them six months later, which gives me time to train someone.

"Find yourself an accountant and a banker with whom you can get along, forget the rest and go for it!"

From there it is war. The struggle constantly. The looks of pity. The fall in the esteem of some. How can one decently consider starting an embroidery business? Hahaha! How can one live from this?! Hahaha!
For twenty years Embroiderers, except when I am with you, I most often meet these looks of pity and indifference. The world in general does not value our professions. This is not a problem most of the time except when you have to convince a banker, an accountant, but also relatives. For the anecdote, the Chamber of Trades even wanted to put me in the accounting box. And yes: Point Counted! It was to cry.
Luckily for me, I had good advice: “find yourself an accountant and a banker with whom you can get along, forget the rest and go for it!”
Luckily for me I ended up meeting a funny accountant and an extra banker who really supported me at the right times. Gratitude.
February 2002. I ordered my embroidery software two months ago and still nothing. I can not advance on my catalog or time flies and I will have nothing to present in May date of official creation of the activity. At that time, no conventional break, it was necessarily a resignation so no unemployment either. No help and no income overnight. Not even afraid.
At the end of February, the software finally arrives. I install it ready to pass my images to the software mill. Outch! What is this M****?
You have understood it, because you have experienced it for many of you, software is stupid. So then.
In my naivety I thought that the software would rough up the work and that I would readjust and embellish during the finishes.
At the time it stunned me a little because I measured all the work that would have to be done before I could release something correct without the part of the software. But it didn’t last long. I immediately set to work and created my first topic as best I could. I hung on. It was hard, very hard but I never had any doubt about my ability to succeed. I wanted it so much!!!
For May 2002 I had three unfortunate subjects in my bag. Not something to fritter about. I was still working as an employee with big responsibilities, even though I now held myself to a reasonable number of hours.
Arrives on May 2, 2002, I am at the accountant, I sign the papers of creation of company: Welcome EURL Nimuë.
It is no longer possible to turn back.

See you for the rest: Become an Embroidery Designer Part 3…

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Viviane, The Lady of the Lake, by Nimuo after an illustration by Elph’s Zephir.

Don’t hesitate to leave your comments below!

Picture of Annaïck Chauvel

Annaïck Chauvel

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