Fiber Artist Felicia Murray

Felicia Murray, a Portland, Oregon-based fiber artist, intertwines her love for fiber art with a deep passion for environmental issues. Her work highlights the beauty and fragility of coral reefs, bringing attention to their delicate nature through her intricate creations. 

Gabryel: How would you describe yourself? 

Felicia: I would say that I'm a maker that wears several hats! I'm always taking every opportunity that comes my way, whether it be a collaboration or job opportunity. I title myself as a fiber artist, as I use traditional fiber techniques in my work. 



Gabryel: What inspired you to become a fiber artist and how did you find your unique personal style? 

Felicia: I've always been drawn to hands-on techniques from a young age. I grew up crocheting, knitting, sewing, making jewelry, and loving arts and crafts. After learning that these techniques have a dense history in the world of craft and fiber arts, I knew that it was the career for me.

As I began to experiment with different techniques while in art school, I found that it was really hard to pick a favourite, so I thought, “Hey, why can’t I combine all of the techniques I love into a piece of art?” From there sprouted my tactile wall hangings that include punch needle, felting, fabric manipulation, and other fiber art techniques. I began to include this style of combing techniques and developing unique motifs inspired by nature into every class that I took. Since graduating, my style has grown and developed to where I am now! 


Gabryel: I really love how your work focuses on sustainability, what message do you want to convey through your art?

Felicia: Because my work is inspired by environments that are decaying around us, I aim to send a message to everyone who views my art. I want to speak more about climate change, global warming, and the struggles of our coral reefs.


"I hope that my art can inspire others to speak up about environmental issues, as well as find ways to treat our Earth and oceans with love."


Gabryel: What is the achievement you are most proud of in your career so far?

Felicia: Overall, I'm proud of making it work as an artist — there have been several ups and downs. I'm passionate about creating art, but in the end, I have to pay rent. It has been a struggle with making money as an artist, while also creating what I want to make, and not just what the market or audience wants to see.

More recently, I've been creating what I want to see, posting what I want to post, and people have been so engaged and loving what I'm doing. The piece I'm most proud of is probably my largest piece yet — A 17ft long installation made for a beautiful building in Lacoste, France. I was living in a tiny apartment at the time, working at a restaurant, taking classes, and still managed to finish it within a 2-month deadline. It's rewarding seeing something that big that you made with your own two hands!


Photo Courtesy of SCAD

Gabryel: Do you incorporate any wellness practices into your routine as an artist? 

Felicia: Meditation is very important to me. You can meditate in so many ways. I meditate through my work. Fiber art techniques are very repetitive, and that's what I love about them. I can meditate while felting or tufting and it gives me the time and space to reflect, breathe, and to not worry.

I think that getting out into nature is important for self-care, especially when working from home — it's easy to become distracted. Taking a quick walk or sitting out on my porch during lunch really helps me disconnect from my work for a bit. I struggle with anxiety and depression, so it's normal for me to have days where it's hard to find motivation. Exercise has also helped me a lot. Getting my heart rate up, as well as feeling like my best self after a workout or hike makes it worth it.


Discover Felicia Murray's latest fiber work online or visit her on Instagram for all the best behind-the-scenes. 


Photos courtesy of Felicia Murray   

Conversation with Gabryel Lake