What makes you feel the most wild and alive?
I’m a big lover of cold weather and I can often be described as a bit of a homebody. I love snuggling up inside with a hot drink and a blanket. Ironically, I feel the wildest when I am in the comfort of my own home. There, I allow my mind to wander and conceptualise illustrative ideas or poetry. I venture deep within myself and find the wild inside of me, which I then sketch out to create an artwork or written anecdotes inspired by my own imagination. I truly do feel the most wild and alive when I am creating.
What do you love most about your work?
I love that my style is forever evolving, yet some elements still remain the same. Since I began sharing my work on social media five years ago, my pieces have always contained concepts surrounding femininity, a strong essence of the beauty and symbolism of nature. People often find a sense of belonging within my work, something that resonates with them. I guess that’s because I create work that I leave very open to interpretation. What I love about my work is that, over the years, it has progressed just as I have and reflects who I am in a way that others find relatable. Through social media, I’ve built a community who get to engage and support my artistic growth and creative journey, not only because they enjoy my aesthetic, but because of the messages and concepts I convey. It’s incredibly heart-warming to be able to produce work that makes others happy.
Your colour palette is refreshingly beautiful and strong. Where do you find inspiration for your illustrations?
Warm tones have always given me a lot of comfort. I find myself being very inspired by light and nature. The soft glow of dusk, the sun setting, the warmth of autumn leaves, sparkling stars contrasted by the blackened night sky, complexions and blush tones. I find inspiration in everyday, ordinary wonders … the stuff of daydreams. My palette is very light and muted yet strong, tied together with bold lush greenery or delicate florals for symbolic purposes.
What is your artistic practice?
For the past year I have been using Procreate, a digital illustrative app, and working off an iPad Mini to create my work. I’m looking to upgrade to a tablet or an iPad Pro sometime soon as I love creating work digitally. I’m incredibly indecisive and a self-confessed perfectionist, so creating work digitally has given me so much freedom to create illustrations in ways that traditional art methods wouldn’t allow me to do otherwise. My productivity has increased quite a bit as I can create work quicker among other daily priorities. I have folders and endless Pinterest boards containing inspirational imagery and references that I use. I usually gather imagery I want to use for a particular concept and combine them into a file. I then make a quick sketch of how I want everything to look prior to beginning the refinement stage. Sometimes I do absolutely no planning at all; I begin with a single reference image of a model and let my hand go wild with drawing leaves and flowers all over. I’ll always have something playing, whether it be music, low-fi beats, my Spotify discover weekly playlist or a podcast.
You’re also a writer. Tell us more about that.
I’ve always been a little more on the shy side. I’m the first to admit I’m not a great “in-person” communicator; I’m a bit of a mumbling mess of emotions and have always struggled with verbally expressing myself. Writing, whether it be just in a journal or poetry, has always been a way for me to reconnect with myself and to better understand my mind and to share in a creative way that can’t be visually represented through my artwork. In January, I launched Bad With Words, a very personal passion project sharing bits and pieces of my writing from over the years. A lot of my poetry has helped me heal from personal struggles and I hope others can find that same sense of relatability within my words as they do with my artwork.
What has been your favourite project to date?
About three years ago I was asked to create four pieces for Your Tea’s new blog, The Vajayjay Diaries, designed to empower women and to normalise the talk around women’s health. They also help raise awareness and share stories of women battling PCOS, endometriosis and things relating to premenstrual syndrome. The illustrations I designed for them included witty yet lighthearted and relatable quotes along with cute, feminine illustrations surrounding these topics. It was fun to design work that is still being shared and adored by women years later, and to have been a part of a very educational and empowering project for females.
What would be your dream gig?
This is a tough question! My work has always had a whimsical, natural, youthful look and prior to illustrating I studied visual merchandising. I think it would be quite the dream to be able to collaborate with a brand targeted towards young women, whether it be for a fashion label or a beauty brand.
For more, visit @becflattleyart on Instagram.