About Carrie, Spark Studio's Founder
I’m Carrie Leeb, an artist/designer/entrepreneur/Bay Area native and I love making things. I feel most alive when I’m creating, and I want to impart this same passion for exploring, experimenting, and making to as many people as I can (like you!). Spark Studio’s a place where this happens. It’s a space where people - adults and kids - learn, create, meet other makers, and have lots of fun doing it!
I’ve had a three different careers, all of which have involved creativity (actually four – parenting is super creative, too!). First I was an award-winning graphic designer and illustrator for 10 years. Initially I worked in New York, then I moved back to San Francisco in 1991, and headed up my own firm, Leeb & Sons. In 1995, I took a year sabbatical in Paris where I studied experimental photography, learned French, and decided I wanted to be a fine artist. As a mostly self-taught painter and sculptor, I worked in San Francisco, but also spent time practicing my art (and Spanish!) in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico and Buenos Aires, Argentina. I was represented for years with galleries in Santa Monica and New York, and showed and sold work nationally and internationally. In 2013, inspired by my love of nature, I invented and designed a product, ReTree. ReTrees are modern, reusable wood holiday trees that sell at SFMOMA, several upscale boutiques and online. Please go to www.carrieleebstudio.com to have a look at my design, illustration, photography, fine art and ReTree. After single-handedly running ReTree for five years, I decided to sell the company so I could get back to my passions - teaching and making art. As a teacher and a mentor, I’ve inspired and encouraged many people to tap into their creative side and experience the joy that goes along with creating.
As a maker...I like making anything and everything, and welcome the challenge of working in new media. I love building things. I’ve casted, and then welded together, a chair made of cast bronze branches. I’ve made furniture by both welding and wood working. I’ve made sculptures with cast glass, ceramics, lint, silk flowers, found objects, and I continue to experiment with new materials. I love to paint and draw, and because of my curiosity and love of exploring, have taught myself several techniques using all kinds of media. I continue to love photography and have an active practice of taking pictures. I’ve done extensive print-making (screen printing, etching, lithography). And I love doing crafts – needle felting, wood burning, embroidery, wet felting, knitting, etc…and I’m always open to learning more!
I do interior design, as well. To see an article in The San Francisco Chronicle about me and my home I renovated, click here.