Kelowna wood-burning artist utilizes social media during pandemic | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kelowna wood-burning artist utilizes social media during pandemic

Kelowna artist Samm Moore sitting in front of Okanagan Lake.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Samm Moore
September 19, 2020 - 6:00 AM

Using the power of social media, a Kelowna-based artist is keeping busy during the pandemic.

Samm Moore specializes in wood burning, using her toolkit to etch designs of B.C. wildlife and landscapes into the Douglas fir, pine and other varieties of wood. She even has her designs on skis and skateboard decks.

At first, Moore said COVID-19 threw her “for a loop,” as she planned on selling wares at spring markets which were cancelled. But with Etsy, an online seller platform, she’s able to ship her creations across the globe.

“It’s such a cool way to connect everyone. If I was selling wood burnings in the Kelowna area then I probably wouldn’t make enough money,” she said.

Field Church
Field Church
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Samm Moore

It’s a requirement nowadays for artists to use social media, she said, as galleries can be expensive for artists and challenging to get into. She's reliant on online platforms for a majority of her orders, which have returned to normal, Moore said.

“Most of my orders come from social media, Facebook, Instagram and Etsy and from my website so I find the more active I am on social media, the more orders I get,” Moore said.

Over the years, she started with only one or two orders a month, but that’s snowballed and she’s been able to fulfil her dream working as a full-time artist, although balancing wood burning with social media and the business aspect of being her own boss is a lot of work, she said.

“On the days I’m not feeling too productive I could wood burn for hours. I think of it like a meditation, I zone out and it’s really calming,” Moore said.

READ MORE: Kelowna's first artist-in-residence needs volunteers to carry beacons of light for project on connection

She discovered wood burning while attending Emily Carr University of Art + Design. Moore borrowed a friend’s wood-burning tool for the project that was meant for artists to experiment with different formats they haven't used before, and she fell in love with it.

Kelowna-based artist Samm Moore at Moraine Lake.
Kelowna-based artist Samm Moore at Moraine Lake.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Samm Moore

“I remember instantly being like ‘This is awesome. This is so fun’ I loved working with the wood and the smell… I really enjoyed it,” she said.

As a child, growing up in Port Alberni on Vancouver Island, she found her love of drawing by copying Calvin and Hobbes books. Prior to wood burning, she was accustomed to sketching.

Many of her drawings are inspired by living near the ocean and mountains of B.C. and she's lived in various locations around the province. It reminds her of home, she said.

“I’d love to do a wood burning of (Okanagan Lake,)” she said.

Moore said her busiest time is Christmas, which she’s looking forward to and she’s preparing to have items for those last-minute buyers.

Find her on Etsy and through her website.

Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Samm Moore

To contact a reporter for this story, email Carli Berry or call 250-864-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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