Tiny Scenic Biog

Tiny Scenic Biog
Tiny Scenic - miniature town jewellery

Based in Winchester in Hants, Jo Strange and Andrew Rees have long shared a love of miniatures and began making their own in 2016. With their jewellery brand, Tiny Scenic, their aim is to create a 'picture-postcard' town of wearable miniature models.
Their pieces are inspired by roadside architecture encountered whilst travelling in the USA , the suburban utopian scenes in movies such as Edward Scissorhands, plus the charm and escapism associated with British seaside holiday resorts.
They use a mix of model-making techniques and materials - including various woods, Perspex and coloured laminates. The first item they made was a midcentury modern-style bungalow necklace, and since then Tiny Scenic town has grown to include swimming pools, A-Frame holiday chalets, roadside diners, vintage motel signage and more.
Jo's background is in fine art and Andrew's in design, and they're both equally as interested in the ideas and aesthetic appeal of a piece as they are in its wearability and build finish.

Tiny Scenic Interview

Tiny Scenic Interview
 
We caught up with Jo from Tiny Scenic. 13/4/2020

How are you doing now?

Yep, okay thanks! had a real wobble just before the start of the lockdown as my husband Andrew is in the vulnerable category due to meds for his Crohns, plus I was consuming way too many news stories. Limiting news check-ins to just 3 times a day and just switching off from the drive to be productive for a bit really helped.

What’s lockdown like for you?
I’m pretty hermit-like so not massively different, but having my husband and our 6-year-old here the whole time has mixed things up a bit – I really miss my daytime silence! :) Andrew works full time for a design agency so I have had to take on the attempts at home schooling and so my making time is more limited. Despite the challenges my overwhelming feeling is one of deep gratitude towards everyone working tirelessly on getting us through this.
Are you able to work/ where is your studio normally? What's your current set up.
We work on Tiny Scenic in our study at home but our usual making desk is now Andrew’s home-working set up. A space which is normally my domain is now mostly a conference call zone and I often find myself sneaking in and out as if I’m not really 'allowed' in! We also use the garage for more messy jobs but I hate being in there as it gets no natural light.  

What projects are you working on now?
Our daughter Meri is obsessed with the kids TV show, ‘Dengineers’ at the moment (in which kids get to design and build their dream den in their back garden). Meri wanted her own den but we compromised and said she could make a den for her teddies – so we’ve been building a teddy-sized A-Frame wooden house with her to live in the garden when it's finished. Progress pic included!
Tiny Scenic-wise, I’ve been working on our website when I can. I’d hoped to have it live in March but I’ll get there!
Is lock down / coronavirus having an influence on your work?
It hasn’t really influenced the content side of things, but it has got me thinking about the formats of work I want to make. I’ve started drawing again because you can do it anywhere – plus the comparative ease of posting flat things definitely has its appeal at the moment!
I’ve also been craving colour a lot more. Not just in our jewellery and art but in our home. At the moment no room in the house is safe from me and a paint roller! Maybe it’s the desire to make the surroundings feel new and different – or seeing all the rainbow pictures in people’s windows.
 
Which artists/ instagram accounts are you most addicted to now?
I've really enjoyed following Suze Riley’s new papercut portraits project. She's a British artist now based in San Francisco and I've loved following her work and her musings on creativity for a long time. @suzecutspaper.
And the absolutely wonderful stitched collages with a mid-century architectural theme by Liz Goode, director of the Foundry Gallery
@elizabethgoode66
Oh and the amazing miniature vintage Americana signs by US-based maker Chris Raley @route9signs

What are you listening to/ reading/ watching when you can?
I’m watching The Kominsky Method on Netflix at the mo - and dreaming of a lockdown in the LA house that Michael Douglas’ character lives in.  
Finally getting around to reading Joyful: The Surprising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness by Ingrid Fetell Lee. (perhaps another reason I’m thinking about colour a lot)
Listening to Springsteen (always!) J
©2020 Paxton Glew
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