Member of the month - Walter Silva - The Interview

Catch of the Day - Pen Pencil Holder by Walter Silva
Catch of the Day - Pen Pencil Holder by Walter Silva
Name: Walter Silva
Etsy shop:

1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I am first generation Portuguese American, both My Parents hail from the Azores. I love making things like Art and Furniture.

Walter Silva
Walter Silva
2. How and when was this creative passion born?

I have been fascinated by Illustrations and Vintage Toys since childhood.
My love for Art stems from my fascination with Vintage Fisher Price Pull Toys?
The Illustrations used and mounted onto those wood substrates are a delight to the eye!
My collection makes me smile.

3. Did you study for it or for something completely different?

I wanted to study Film-making, but it was too expensive and very difficult to get into (Late 80's)...
Completed my associates degree in Liberal Arts, then I knew I wanted to study (ART) Illustration.
Attended Rhode Island School of Design for illustration, which led me to Study Illustration and Wood/Furniture Design at University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth.

Corner at Walter Silva's Studio
Corner at Walter Silva's Studio

4. Is this your fulltime job or do you have another job? 

I have been doing this Full Time for Almost 4 years!
But, have had a lot of other jobs to supplement my ART.

5. How did this project started?

Believing in myself was the most important thing!
And, from there I took one step at a time.
Made a lot of contacts and voila it happens.

6. What inspires you? 

Good Question! A lot of things inspire me, like:
- Trips to Antique Malls, Flea Markets / Yard Sales, Bookstores...Meeting People!
Though my favorite place to get inspiration is a remote Beach on the Cape.
(Cape Cod, Massachusetts)

Table on Walter Silva's Studio
7. How do you choose your materials? And where do you find them? 

From my experience(s) with so many Mediums and Media, I just know I love working with collage, paint, Wood and now Digital.
I get a lot of papers from antique stores, I find papers on the ground too, people give me stuff, etc.

8. Could you share a typical work day?

Wake up, brush my teeth, make coffee and head to my computer in the studio.

Read & Answer emails, then I make lists of what needs to be done for the day...
By the afternoon I either am making items or Photographing my ART.
Then List my items in the latter part of the day. Sometimes I do not leave the house, because I have a lot to do. But thankful I can do what I need to do at home in my studio.

And sometimes, I just stop everything!
Take the day off and drive to some new or Favorite place to clear up my mind.
I feel fortunate living in Providence, Rhode Island the smallest state in the United States, there is so much to do and see!

9. What is your favorite part of your work and work tool? Why? 

I just love creating and making Art! I love that I am able to create Art and incorporate it with a Furniture / product designed by me... bringing both together is very satisfying!

Baby Board Books Organizer by Walter Silva
Baby Board Books Organizer by Walter Silva
10. Why did you open an Etsy shop? 

Before Etsy, I use to sell my items in local boutiques and gift stores.
Etsy gives me more exposure to the world!
I love the whole concept of selling online:)

11. What do you think are the benefits of belonging to a team like the PTteam?

PTteam is the only team I am most active with on etsy...
Maybe it's a connection to being Portuguese? I feel most members are so passionate about there craft and work very hard.

Singing in The Rain Photo Picture Frame by Walter Silva
Singing in The Rain Photo Picture Frame by Walter Silva

12. What do you do to promote your work and shop? 

Advertise on some blogs though not sure it works?
I contribute tutorials to the blog and get exposure to my shop there too.
I try not to get caught up in having people (blogs) convince me I need their services for a fee.
That's a business in itself...
But, I always carry business cards with me and always talk about my items and encourage others to visit my online shop.
I sell in brick and mortar shops too and my items have my etsy shop link on them.
Not too often , but I do sell at some craft shows.

13. What advice would you like to share with fellow artists or crafters? 

Be prepared to work hard and enjoy all levels of it!
Be true and honest and it will grow with time, Believe in your ART!
Try not to be negative and talk about your items like they are the best things!

14. What do you find most inspiring in the country you're from? 

The cultural diversity.

Collage re Arranged Type Face Collage Art Wall Plaque by Walter Silva
Collage re Arranged Type Face Collage Art Wall Plaque by Walter Silva
15. Where do you see yourself and your project in 5 years?

Hope to grow the business and never have to work for anyone!

16. What would you take with you if your house was on fire?

Hope this never happens, and really don't know? my computer???

Sacred Heart Mixed Media Assemblage by Walter Silva
Sacred Heart Mixed Media Assemblage by Walter Silva
Quick fire questions. Your favorite:

Book: The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
Movie: Amelie directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Music: Florence and the Machine
Artist: Mary Blair
Food: Portuguese and french
City: Toronto


  1. Great to know more about you Walter! :)
    Love your work.

  2. He's one of my favorite artists since I found him :)
    Love the name "Silva Ware", love the art he makes, love his comments...
    And now... I love this interview!

  3. Walter is so talented! Definitely one of the best on Etsy! I'm so honored to have him on my blog. He's just awesome. Great interview!

  4. One of my greatest sources of inspiration in believing in oneself. Thanks Walter.


  5. Great work Walter! I am a BIG fan! - Caroline

  6. Love your work Walter! Congrats for the feature, great interview :)

  7. All of these look so much better after you fixed them up! Sounds like you got a good deal on them too :)




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    We are a team of Etsy sellers with Portugal in our hearts! Our members come from all around the world and our connection is Portugal. Be welcome!