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Meet the Maker: Karolina Di Duca

Posted 02.04.2024
Meet the Maker

Karolina is a trained mixed media artist with a passion for art and graphic design. She is the founder of didARTstudio – framed your life – since 2019, specialising in customised art created with mixed media techniques such as drawing, painting, sculpting, 3D arts, and art prints. Since September 2022, Karolina has been providing art classes at Fingal Community Centres, Seamus Art Centre, and Schoolhouse of Arts in Enniskerry and individual workshops in her own studio in Swords.

Each day begins with a canvas of possibilities, and I paint it with the colours of my passion for art. It’s a ritual, a symphony of creativity that orchestrates the very essence of my life.

I start my day with a harmonious morning routine, a prelude to a productive day in my studio. The gentle crescendo of stretching exercises awakens my senses, followed by a nutritious breakfast that nourishes both body and soul. As I embrace the day, I set a positive mindset, ready to embrace the world of art.

The overture of my day begins with preparing my studio space. It’s not just organisation; it’s a carefully choreographed ballet of brushes and colours, ensuring that every art supply is within reach. The studio transforms into a stage, an enchanting realm that inspires and welcomes me.

With a deep breath, I embark on a creative journey, working on commissioned art orders. This is the heart of my day, where I weave dreams into reality. It’s a dance of artistic expression, using a palette of techniques as varied as the colours in my mind.

Around noon, I pause for an interlude, a moment of reflection. It’s a delicate pause, an opportunity to step away from my canvas, recharge, and let my mind wander through the corridors of inspiration. New ideas and fresh perspectives often find their genesis here.

On some days, I transition to teaching mode. I gather my teaching materials like notes in a musical score, preparing to share my knowledge with eager students. Heading to the location of the workshop, it’s like embarking on a creative voyage, guiding others to discover their artistic voices.

During art workshop sessions, I find my crescendo. It’s a symphony of guidance, sharing the cadence of expertise and the passionate rhythm of creativity. Together, we explore the vast world of art, learning techniques and harmonising our artistic souls.

On days without workshops, the studio is once again my sanctuary. I resume my creative work, whether it’s adding final touches to ongoing commission orders, initiating new projects, or daring to experiment with uncharted artistic waters.

As the evening unfurls like a curtain call, I begin my encore. It’s the art of wrapping up the day’s work, a final brushstroke before a brief intermission. I clean my materials, organise my canvases, and ensure that the studio is ready for the next act.

Evenings belong to me, a personal intermezzo of relaxation and reflection. It’s the time to unwind, reconnect with family and friends, or delve into personal hobbies. The balance between my art and personal life is a masterpiece in itself.

In the quiet hours of the night, inspiration often visits. I use this time to review my projects, plan the next artistic journey, and sketch new ideas. It’s a nocturnal sonata, setting the stage for the art that awaits me in the morning.

This daily routine is a canvas painted with my passion for art, a testament to my dedication to the studio, and a joyful testament to the power of creativity. It’s a work of art in itself, where every moment is a stroke of inspiration.

Be kind to yourself and avoid being overly critical. It's normal for artists to have moments of self-doubt or to feel that their work isn't good enough. Remember that art is a personal expression, and it's okay to make mistakes and learn from them. Embrace imperfections as part of your artistic growth.

Karolina Di Duca


I adore every aspect of my work as an artist. The true essence of my passion lies in the boundless world of art, and it’s a journey I treasure for several reasons.

First and foremost, I love all forms of art. The freedom to explore and experiment with a myriad of artistic techniques and styles is a constant source of joy. It’s like having a vast palette of endless possibilities at my fingertips, waiting to be transformed into unique and expressive creations.

The process of working on commissioned orders is particularly special to me. There’s an immense satisfaction in bringing a client’s vision to life, translating their ideas and desires into a tangible piece of art. The moment when a client is genuinely happy with the final result is like capturing a burst of pure artistic magic.

Equally dear to my heart are the workshops I provide. It’s an opportunity to meet with people who share a love for art and are embarking on their creative journeys. Guiding them, assisting them, and witnessing the birth of their amazing art pieces is an immensely rewarding experience. It’s a collaborative process where I get to be a part of their artistic growth and exploration, and that connection is truly invaluable.

In essence, what I love most about my work is the dynamic and ever-evolving nature of art, the satisfaction of creating for others, and the chance to inspire and assist fellow art enthusiasts in their own artistic adventures. It’s a beautiful tapestry of creativity that I cherish every day.

While I have a deep passion for my work as an artist and art instructor, like any profession, there are aspects that may be less enjoyable. Here are a few things that I might like least about my work:

Administrative Tasks: The administrative side of being an artist, including managing finances, paperwork, and marketing, can sometimes feel burdensome. It takes time away from the actual creative process.
Inconsistent Income: The income of an artist can be inconsistent and unpredictable, especially if relying on commission orders or the success of art sales. Financial stability can be a concern at times.
Criticism and Rejection: Art is subjective, and not every piece or idea will resonate with everyone. Dealing with criticism and rejection, whether from clients or the art community, can be challenging and disheartening.
Artistic Blocks: Just like any creative endeavor, artists can face periods of creative block or inspiration drought. These moments can be frustrating and may impede productivity.
Time-Consuming Workshops: While workshops are rewarding, they can be time-consuming and mentally draining, especially if they involve teaching for long hours or dealing with diverse groups of students.
Exposure to Solvents and Materials: Working with various art materials and chemicals can have health risks, and artists need to take precautions to ensure their well-being.
Balancing Personal and Professional Life: Maintaining a work-life balance can be challenging, especially when artistic projects demand extended hours, leading to potential burnout.
It’s important to note that these challenges are not unique to the world of art and creativity, and they often come with the territory in many professions. Despite these less enjoyable aspects, the love for art and the fulfilment it brings often outweigh the challenges, driving artists to pursue their creative passions.

How do you switch off?

Sleep is indeed an essential way to switch off and recharge. It allows the body and mind to rest, recover, and prepare for the next day. Other ways i switch off and relax by engaging in a good book. This is a great way to unwind and escape into a different world.

What advice would you give someone who is considering this craft career?

For anyone considering a career in the craft or artistic field, I would offer the following advice:

Patience: Be patient with yourself and your creative journey. Artistic pursuits often involve a significant learning curve, and mastering various techniques takes time. Don’t get discouraged by initial setbacks or moments of self-doubt. Keep practicing and learning, and you’ll see progress over time.
Self-Compassion: Be kind to yourself and avoid being overly critical. It’s normal for artists to have moments of self-doubt or to feel that their work isn’t good enough. Remember that art is a personal expression, and it’s okay to make mistakes and learn from them. Embrace imperfections as part of your artistic growth.
Find Your Voice: Discover what resonates with you personally. Explore different styles, techniques, and mediums to find the ones that align with your artistic vision and bring you the most joy. Your unique perspective and voice as an artist are what make your work special.
Learn Continuously: Art is an ever-evolving field. Stay curious and never stop learning. Take workshops, read about art history, and stay up-to-date with the latest trends and techniques in the art world. Continuous learning will keep your work fresh and innovative.
Network and Connect: Building a supportive network of fellow artists, mentors, and art enthusiasts can be incredibly beneficial. It provides opportunities for collaboration, feedback, and exposure. Attend art events, exhibitions, and engage with the art community.
Embrace Challenges: Don’t shy away from challenges. Sometimes, the most rewarding artistic breakthroughs come from stepping out of your comfort zone. Embrace new challenges and experiment with different ideas and approaches.
Stay Organised: In a creative career, staying organised is crucial. Keep track of your projects, deadlines, and financial matters. A well-organised approach will help you manage your artistic endeavours more effectively.
Persistence: The path of an artist can be filled with ups and downs. Stay persistent, even in the face of setbacks or rejections. Your dedication to your craft and your belief in your creative vision can lead to great success over time.
Passion: Above all, be driven by your passion for art. Art is a deeply personal and fulfilling journey. If you’re genuinely passionate about what you do, it will shine through in your work and resonate with others.
Remember that a career in the artistic and craft field is as much about the process as it is about the end result. It’s a journey of self-expression, growth, and discovery. Embrace it with an open heart and a willingness to learn and evolve.

What’s your favourite craft item in your home?

I don’t have a favourite craft item in my home because I genuinely love all art techniques. Each one brings a unique form of joy and creativity into my life, and it’s the collective diversity of art techniques that truly enriches my artistic journey. Whether it’s the vibrant colours of painting, the tactile experience of sculpting, or the precision of drawing, they all hold a special place in my heart, each offering its own distinctive kind of artistic fulfilment. It’s the variety and endless possibilities within the realm of art that make it an ever-inspiring and enchanting world for me.
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