What inspires you?
Looking everywhere and at everything! This can fire one's imagination. From a cloud to a piece of squashed chewing gum on a pavement; colour next to colour; or people-watching. Absolutely anything looked at with an open eye.
Are you interested in fashion?
Yes, the necessary constant changing is interesting in itself—the way clothes are worn or placed on a body can set one's imagination sprinting. How different garments affect people and their behaviour is also fun.
I use a comprehensive collection of found papers as my palette in my collages. These are coloured, patterned or textured by their printed, written or worn surfaces. With these media I "paint" my collages. I shade with density of print and create substance and movement with lines plucked from old maps or manuscripts. My pieces try to use mark-making in an innovative and humorous way to create a collection of clothing that exudes character and wit.
What, for you, makes a successful fashion illustration?
One that gives a feel of the hero [garment] and hopefully adds movement and visual excitement in its execution.
What artistic training have you undertaken?
I was given great encouragement to look and draw at primary school. Secondary school then added belief in one's ability and also the first chance to deal with rejection. This was followed by a fabulous time of discovery and technique learning at Manchester College of Art and Design. I then worked in television and animation in the UK and the USA before developing my current working style In the UK and Europe.
If you could give one piece of advice to a student, what would it be?
Look, draw and don't let anyone grind you down.
Describe yourself and your greatest achievement.
Be patient—I'm not there yet!
Which media and techniques do you use? Paper collage is the source of my creativity, I prefer to use old paper because of the way that it can be manipulated, and I prefer the colours and texture. I also occasionally use fabric and metal, as nothing is actually ruled out.
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