After having a tough end to 2015 and a tougher start to 2016 I was left feeling pretty flat about painting, something I have never experienced before. I realised that more than ever my mood dictated my work, or lack of it. I was left wishing that I were one of those artists who could draw from their sadness and produce incredibly deep, dark work. Instead I just lost my appetite to paint and Leon and I made the hard decision to postpone my exhibition due to open at his gallery, Friends Of Leon, in April.
So, where to look for inspiration when you don’t even feel like looking? Well because most of my friends are as equally obsessed with fashion as me, when the shows roll round I kind of couldn’t avoid it. My Instagram and Facebook were blowing up with Spring/Summer, Couture, Paris, Autumn/Winter, Bridal and everything in between. I started listening to amazing podcasts about feminism, women of influence and, of course, the arts. I started becoming obsessed by certain colours and looking more deeply into colour theory. I started wearing my crazy clothes, not just collecting them, as my husband stated when I put on my pink, frilly Courtney Love x Nasty Gal dress with blue velvet mary-janes.
As I started mentally filing away beautiful faces and incredible designs I noticed a theme. I’ve always said if I weren’t a fashion illustrator I would be sitting in a little design studio somewhere beading and embroidering incredible clothing till my fingers bleed and I go blind. Naturally that is what I was drawn to when watching the shows, Elie Sabb, Marchesa and my biggest current obsession of them all Gucci! Sequins, beading and most of all appliqué were the techniques I became obsessed with. And how fun to paint them all on the faces I had also been obsessing over!
Slowly I started sketching these Ideas in pencil on scraps of paper and gradually they made their way to canvas. And all of a sudden it was fun again! I got out of my head and into my studio and just played with no intention to do anything more than that. And a collection came together, ladies of the same composition on the canvas all wearing a heavily embellished dress and, most surprisingly of all: not a single flower in their hair to be seen!
I’m releasing these girls into the world because I love them and I’m proud of each piece.
I’m keeping the print editions small and exclusive.