MOOSE HARBOUR - “Art is my passion, my therapy, and my escape from the day-to-day. I feel so accomplished when I receive just one order. It means so much that someone wants a piece of my artwork,” says Erika Pitts of Moose Harbour.
In 2011, the Queens County woman turned her creative talents into a busy hobby business when she opened an Etsy shop. Pitts says her mom almost instantaneously came up with the name “Everything Erika,” and she went with it.
Like its name, Everything Erika sees Pitts make everything. She enjoys working with a variety of mediums and trying new things in hopes of expanding her skillset. Her specialty, though, is personalized pet artwork.
“I work with coloured pencils, markers, ink, acrylics, and have recently ventured into pyrography (wood burning). I also do digital art, graphic design, and photography,” she says.
Pitts is particularly busy leading up to the holidays, making Christmas-themed crafts and customized gifts. She takes orders for just about anything someone can dream up, she says, including portraits of both pets and people in a variety of sizes, paintings, hand-painted ornaments, pet treat jars, mugs, hand-drawn jewelry featuring a pet or a person, digitally hand-drawn portraits, photographic prints and graphic design.
“I don’t really have a favourite medium. They’re all fun,” she says.
Eventually, Pitts says she would love for her art to evolve into a full-time profession. For now, she continues to do what she has loved since she was a child – making art, and using it as a therapy.
“I struggle with social anxiety and depression,” says Pitts. “When I’m in a funk, I do not enjoy doing anything – art included. I really have to push out of that place in my mind to get back to myself and back down to earth.”
She says taking orders helps, because she knows she has a schedule to maintain and goals to meet, never wanting to miss those or make people unhappy. Once she sits down at a project, however, she finds herself lost in the piece she’s working on, and that definitely distracts her from a busy mind.
“When I complete a piece, I feel a sense of accomplishment that helps ease the emptiness of depression,” says Pitts.
Pitts says that living in the Moose Harbour/Mersey Point area helps, as she says she finds inspiration in every part of the lovely town.
“The beaches ease my mind, the people brighten my mood, and the spirit here makes it truly feel like home,” she says.
Everything Erika can be found Facebook (Everything Erika), Etsy (www.etsy.com/shop/everythingerika), and through her website: www.everythingerika.com. Commissioned pieces can be ordered online or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.