Sunday, February 27, 2011

Women Who Create Beautiful Things - Tali Antonina, Tush Tush & Tosya

The young woman I interviewed  today for my "Women Who Create Beautiful Things", is an artist whose Etsy shop I've been admiring for some time.   It is my pleasure to post an interview with a very lovely and talented young woman, Tali of Tush Tush and Tosya.

Please tell me a little about yourself.
Hi my name is Tali!  I graduated from Bezalel Academy of Art & Design in Jerusalem 2 years ago!
I am a freelance illustrator living in Tel-Aviv with my boyfriend. I illustrate for magazines and children's books. I love working in many techniques, to take pictures and to dance. I have 2 shops on etsy, TushTush ( & Tosya (

You must be very busy with being an Illustrator and running 2 Etsy shops.  Tell me about how you got involved with Etsy and how your second shop came about.

I first heard of etsy at Bezalel when a friend Naomi (who also has a shop - The Time Is Now ( told me I should open a shop. When I opened, I saw how great the site was to emerging creators and I fell involve with the community. I eventually opened a second shop, because I have two different styles and I like each shop to live in its own world. I feel a cohesive look to a shop helps to better impart your outlook to potential clients and encourage sales, which is one advice I can share with you who want to improve sales.

I have a different process for my 2 styles, the style of my work in TushTush is realistic, while my Tosya illustrations are more stylistic and fun. My TushTush paintings are born from the moments captured in beautiful pictures - the look of a person, the way the light falls, the story frozen between two people…

My Tosya illustrations come from within, from my love of color and shape and humor. I like my illustrations to leave a sweet taste in my mouth, like candy.

There are so many paintings of yours that I many tell a story. Are some of these from your illustration projects or is this the natural illustrator in you?

My process of illustration stems from my my inner world. Certain images stir memories and feelings in me and I want to capture that in my illustrations and pass them forward. I get inspired my watching people a lot.

Artists and illustrators who influence my work are Egon Schiele, Corneliu Baba, Malcolm T. Liepke, and Euan Uglow.   My color work would not have been the same without them.  I find the boldness and originality of illustrators like Maria Kalman, Kveta Pacovska greatly inspiring. (I feel greatly honored to have a collection of Kveta's books - her work is really evoking and powerful).

I think your little tiny canvases are so cute.  Tell me about how you go about making them?  

I first came up with the idea of tiny canvas prints because I wanted to offer a finished product, something that is tactile and readymade to hang. At school the teachers put a lot of emphasis on finished products. I loved the look and feel of the small canvases grouped together - a lot of color, stories, and emotions coming together.

To make them I first select a picture that inspires me, whether it's the colors, the light, or the story. I paint the image in acrylic or oil pastels on paper or wood. I do those on a larger scale than the canvas they ultimately get printed on. I then scan them, do color correction, and have them professionally printed on cotton canvas and professionally stretched on a wood frame by a framer in my neighborhood.

Is there any advice or past experience that you can pass on that helped you with your sales?

As a shopkeeper, the most important advice I can impart is not to let the shop rest - you need to keep active all the time, to keep the shop active. It's like a magazine, people will come where there's action. I realist items in my shop several times a day and try listing as many new items as I can. I also recommend offering a variety of options for your clients - in my shop I have originals, prints, canvas, etc.- so there'll be something for everyone. I keep the prices as accessible to everyone as I can. I think offering custom orders is a great idea - etsy is a marketplace for people who want unique items, to stand out from the crowd. It also has the benefit of giving me a lot of material to work with:)

Thank you, Tali.  It has been truly a treat to get to know you better.  We can all appreciate your helpful Etsy advise and so enjoy your talent. 

I'm starting to feel like Oprah!  It has been such a rewarding experience for me getting to know all of you talented women.  Next week, join me with a lovely creative woman, Melissa of Lissa Bee Creations, who truly creates beautiful things!


Diane said...

Diane thank you for introducing me to this very talented artist--her work is beautiful!!

Artist Terri Smith said...

Oh My Goodness! Tali's Work Is Sensational! Beautiful! Remarkable! I've Been Waiting On This Interview All Week! And Thank You So Very Much Tali For All The Wonderful Sales And Promotion Tips You Shared Regarding ETSY. I Struggle So Much In That Area And I Learned SO MUCH From Your "Process". Thank You Diana For Introducing This Exceptionally Talented Artist With Us. It Was Indeed A Previledge!

Valerie Weller said...

This is really a fun interview and so informative! I love what you are doing Diana... it gives us something to learn from and enjoy every week. Tali's work is a treat! So cool to see someone who has 2 ways of doing things
and how she manages her business as well.

Thanks for introducing us to her, and all your other wonderful "creative artistes"!

Anonymous said...

Fabulous interview!

I love Tali's work even more now I have read this interview!

Jodi Ulschmid said...

Great interview! I have loved Tali's paintings for a long time too! Beautiful work!
Thank you both for sharing.

Jennifer @ Studio JRU said...

What a wonderful interview Diana! Tali's work is amazing... and this is the first I have seen it! Thank you so much for sharing. I love how she said, "I like my illustrations to leave a sweet taste in my mouth, like candy." :)

soraya nulliah said...

Wow!! I love your work Tali!!! Especially that first portrait of the little girl...she just reaches out to me...have to check out your shop! I really appreciated the Etsy advice...I have to re-open my shop really soon!!! Thanks for showcasing this amazing artist Diane!