What makes you feel the most wild and alive?
Exploring the outdoors, whether it be alone or with loved ones. I’ve always enjoyed spending time in nature, but I didn’t fully appreciate it until I adopted my dog Lady. She’s really introduced me to another level of spending time outside. Florida, as flat as it may be, has an abundance of trails and parks that are filled with lush greenery. Exploring the palm-filled trails is nothing short of magical. It’s where most of my inspiration comes from; sunlight and vegetation.
You’re a self-taught artist and illustrator. When did your love for art first begin?
Art has always been a huge part of my life. My family has many creatives ranging from painters to musicians. Both my grandfather and my mother always encouraged creativity through teaching me and providing art supplies of various kinds. Growing up modestly we didn’t have much, but colourful pencils and papers were available in abundance. The first time I fell head over heels in love with art was when I learned that I could transport my mind anywhere with a few brush strokes and some fun ideas. I can’t think of anything more magical than creating something captivating and completely getting lost in that world.
How has a sense of ambition and drive shaped where you are now?
Ambition and drive are everything, the backbone of every job and every illustration. I’ve had many jobs and interests but none of them really stuck with me because my heart wasn’t fully in it. With art, it’s been very different. It provides me with a constant and insatiable need to create and think outside of the box, always searching for the next idea, the next colour palette. I feel very fortunate to have found this sort of motivation through creating. It has a way of spilling over into other areas of my life, making me feel more alive and ready for next thing to come.
When do you find inspiration for your illustrations?
Inspiration is a funny thing; I don’t think I’ve ever just simply come across it. For me, it’s as if I have to be in tune with it, ready to receive with an open mind. Most days it’s like this: I brush off any to do’s or responsibilities that are weighing heavily on my mind and go outside. Being in nature has a way of clearing my thoughts and helps me focus on the moment. This may be a walk in nature, a drive in my car or even just laying in my own backyard while listening to music. The goal is to be in a state of presence and contentment, without too much on my mind. That’s when ideas really begin to take shape and flow in. In a world that’s always busy and on the go, it’s important to unplug and allow myself the space.
What colours are you currently obsessed with?
I’ve really been into the combo of a warm and rich rust/terracotta combined with deep emeralds and juniper. Azure and sapphire blues as well as various shades of yellow and apricot have also been making my heart skip a beat.
Please share with us your creative practice
Once an idea sparks my interest, I initially sketch it out. The sketch then gets adjusted and tweaked countless times until the general idea is refined. I really enjoy clear lines that flow and geometrical shapes that overlap and connect. It takes some time to move things around and adjust them until it looks like it makes sense. This part of the process is my favourite.
Once I feel that it’s fitting, I either refine the lines and keep the illustration as line art or, if it’s to become a colour piece, I move onto finding a colour palette that is suitable. Sometimes colour comes easy, other times it takes a while to match up the right shades until they look pleasing to the eye. I’ve had illustrations that I was stuck on for days because of colour tweaking. Stepping away from the desk and then coming back to it can be very helpful in those instances.
What would be your dream collaboration?
That’s a tough one … how about an exclusive dining collaboration? Everything from high-quality dinner plates and unique drinkware to tablecloths and silverware with illustrative details. Some fun vases and charcuterie boards. The possibilities are endless! Or maybe a clothing line with bold shapes and colour choices. Something geometric, balancing minimal lines and maximising colour.
What are you …
Listening to: A bit all over the place. Anything from Frankie Valli, Aretha Franklin, Frank Sinatra and Celine Dion to Ben Platt, Lewis Capaldi and Tiësto. I get bored with same genres so I’m always exploring various artists.
Reading: Discovering the Inner Mother by Bethany Webster. I had the pleasure of creating the cover for this one. It’s a fantastic book that focuses on clearing your life of oppressive beliefs and ideals.
Watching: My husband and I have been hopping between comedies and mystery movies. The last couple we watched are The Illusionist and also re-watched Bridget Jones’s Diary.
Learning: To simply take a moment and just enjoy being present.
What’s next for you?
Ready for anything intriguing and “out of the box” that comes my way!