Spotlight: Eli Maor, Lifelong Crafter and Teacher
Eli Maor grew up in a home that breathed art and content, so she absorbed creativity with her entire essence. She recently authored The Craft Kingdom, featuring over 90 craft, DIY and art projects that anyone can make. The style of the book encourages creativity, so don’t follow the exact directions, make the projects your own! If you don’t sew, use glue. There is no right or wrong way to craft and make art, because it comes down to having fun and expressing yourself.
What inspires you?
Nature! I’m in love with nature and I feel that we can find all the answers in nature – color combination, smells, materials and even spiritual guiding. Nature makes everything possible, so we must appreciate it and draw inspiration out of it.
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What different creative mediums do you play around with?
I love to take photos and film my crafting process, so this led me to upload some of my crafting to The Craft Kingdom YouTube channel.
Do you plan your work out all ahead of time, or do you just dive in with your materials and start playing?
I love planning and I always begin with a planning mode, but while crafting or making art I realize that you cannot plan. The materials guide you to the process and not the other way around.
How long have you been a crafter and how did you get started?
I have been crafting since I was a little child. I grew up at my parents’ publishing house where I used to cut fonts on light tables. When I grew older, I sold my own items in a handmade booth.
Which of your creative accomplishments gave you the most satisfaction, and why?
Publishing The Craft Kingdom is for sure my biggest satisfaction. I worked on this book for more than 4 years and it holds more than 90 DIY and crafts projects. Very involved in making the book, I gathered ideas, photographed and did graphic designing. With such great reviews, today I’m even more positive that this book had to be born.
What are your earliest memories involving your own creative expression?
My earliest memory was using metal scraps and creating new jewelry from them. I did not have any tools, so I used nail clippers to open the loops.
How do you think one can expand one’s creative mind and abilities?
I think that crafting is one of the soul’s most profound gifts it can get. Making craft and art is very individual. These moments are completely yours. Even if you don’t have access to all of the materials, you can be creative and experiment. If you prefer to use one type of material over the other, do so. The main purpose is to enjoy it and create your vision at every moment.
When you aren’t crafting and creating, what are you doing?
I love YouTube – seeing people create art and share it relaxes me, and that is why I wanted to have my own YouTube channel to share my own creations and relax people as well.
How do you balance your personal life and your creative endeavors?
My personal life is very creative as well – I’m married to a musician, and we love to explore music, art and food. We try to make our personal life a creative life, and our creative endeavors personal.
With respect to your creative activities, what has been the greatest obstacle that you have had to overcome?
The greatest obstacle was putting my name out there, releasing my crafts and publishing my book. Revealing as well as exposing yourself is the most vulnerable place. Getting out of your comfort zone and starting to show yourself is hard.
What traits, if any, do you think that creative people have as compared to people who are not creative?
I believe that all humans have the creativity gene in them, but not all humans are exposed to creativity.
How have other people supported or inspired you?
My mother had a huge part in getting me into crafting. She always encouraged me to create new things, and the look on her face when I created something new was fuel for me to keep on going. She loved the idea of me making a craft book, and I got her blessing minutes before she died. After she died I found a great comfort in making crafts and I am sure that making art and crafts can heal a lot of pain.
How do you keep your skills fresh?
I search for exciting new artists, and challenge my mind into new ideas and concepts.
What project are you working on now?
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?
Even if you are stuck or think you failed, do not quit — always keep on moving.
Find more about Eli Maor on her YouTube channel. Enjoy these videos about making soap and making a magnetic inspiration boar: