Boots & Pine


Tamara Becerra Valdez in Austin TX

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Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Corpus Christi, Texas.

What brought you to Austin? 

I came to Austin in 2005 to attend the art program at the University of Texas at Austin.

What do you do for a living?

I work in my apothecary and art studio most days and pick up creative contract jobs here and there.

How did you get started?

A few years ago, two friends and I were inspired to start our own herbal apothecaries after attending an herbalism program. I was inspired by honey as medicine and retelling stories of the texana/tejana landscape. Since, new projects and new ideas have developed and I’ve enjoyed growing as an artist.

What’s your favourite thing about your city?

My favorite thing about Austin is the geology. The many grottos, limestone cliffs, prairie land, major watersheds and fossil remains are incredible features in and around Austin, Texas.

What’s the last treasure you found?

Recently, I made a trip to Mississippi for a small gathering of some incredible folks working in the South. That weekend we met a basketweaver in Como, MS. His name is Milton Gross.

Baskets are something I love and cherish– like treasure. Meeting him and taking home one of his handmade split oak baskets, felt like finding treasure.

If you were going to eat your last meal in Austin, where and what would you eat?

Daruma Ramen!

If you could have a sleepover with anyone who has ever existed, who would it be?

Too many to name, but a sleepover with photographer, Graciela Iturbide. She is a dream.

If your life was a TV show, what would be the theme song?

All songs are good by the pioneer man, Charlie Feathers. Tie with the corrido “Mi Tejana” by Los Pengüínos Del Norte as some kind of theme song.

What does Austin need that it doesn’t have now?

Austin needs food forests more than it needs downtown condos.

Follow Tamara on Tumblr.

See her work online.

Follow her on Instagram.


© 2012 Arden Wray