Our Posy Collection is now LIVE!
As I’ve been teasing this range for such a long time now, I’m so pleased it’s out there in the world. I always love to understand the creative process that artists go through to get from an idea to a final outcome, whatever form that may take. I once wouldn’t have been able to tell you my own process, it wasn’t clear cut or reliable, but over the years, I’ve started to see the same journey repeat and refine itself, and that’s what I’ll be sharing with you today!
Now this is always the easy breezy stage. List most areas of my life, I absolutely love to dream, plan and create visions, but it often takes a lot of persuasion and personal pep talks to get my act together and actually see the vision through. By the time I’m ready to start the artwork for a collection, I’ve been gathering visual inspiration for sometime, from Pinterest (of course), photos I’ve taken and random memorabilia I’ve accumulated. I wouldn’t say my designs are particularly trend focussed, and I really struggle to create a colour pallet and stick to it, so I tend to create collections around topics like florals, safari animals or sea creatures, instead of including a variety of subject matter across a range, but tie it together with a consistent colour pallet, for example.
Here are a few examples of the images I gathered for inspiration for Posy. My main vision for the designs was for them be really painterly, with lots of visible brushstrokes and gouache washes for backgrounds.
This is another really enjoyable part. I can come up with thumbnail ideas all day long - it’s painting them up into the final designs that’s the difficult part for me! I’ll either create thumbnails on scrap pieces of paper or using Procreate on my iPad and I’ll use the HB brush tool so it looks like pencil. Incorporating more digital techniques into my creative process has been really freeing. There used to be so many things I wanted to do, my ideas were great, but I didn’t have the skills to execute them. Now I can pick and choose where I find Procreate and Photoshop helpful, or when there are things I don’t feel able to achieve using paint.
This time round, most of my thumbnails were just on scrap bits of paper.
Sketchbook and the painting process
At this stage, I’ll often procrastinate with as many admin tasks as I can get my hands on… that blank page fear is really real!
I’ve always found flowers particularly difficult to paint... I really feel they need to look effortless to truly capture them, so I had a lot of practising ahead of me. My tactic was quantity over quality to get me started, and hoped to get approximately one good flower in every seven.
For the first time ever, I also consulted another designer who’s recently gone freelance, to guide me as to what works commercially, and also to be another set of eyes to sift through the artwork I’d created and try laying it out in different compositions that I might not think of alone. Emma also laid all the developing designs out together, catalogue style, which was something I’d not thought to do before, and it really helped me to visualise the range as a whole.
After many iterations of each design, and some honest feedback from my team, I settled on the final 18 card designs, 8 prints and complementary stationery.
Generally I’m known to work right up to the minute of a deadline, and don’t normally leave time for a proper photoshoot, so the Posy photoshoot was a particularly fun opportunity to capture all the final prints and cards out in the wild. We worked with Holly Booth who has always taken beautiful photos for us in the past, but this time we went to an amazing location - the home of @charminglifebyjess on Instagram, which brought the whole collection to life!