I am a freelance Illustrator based in London and a graduate of the University of Brighton. Over the last 7 or 8 years, I have worked on a diverse range of projects including greetings cards, pattern designs and a huge painting on a life sized model of a baby elephant for the Elephant Family charity.
My style is graphic, colourful, nostalgic and quirky. I find inspiration almost anywhere; from the natural world and my urban surroundings in London, to stylish Art Deco architecture, psychedelic posters of the 60's and the wallpapers of William Morris. My illustrations are created using a variety of techniques including drawing, paper collage, paint and Photoshop, whilst maintaining the same eye catching and uplifting feel in all my designs.
Question: What drew you to illustration/design? Vicky: I'm not sure exactly but I've always enjoyed drawing since I was very small and I think once I was around 5 years old I announced that I was going to be an artist (and author too!). Question: Do you have any formal design training? Vicky: Yes I completed my Foundation course at Wimbledon School of Art before heading to the University of Brighton where I gained a BA Hons in Illustration. Question: Where are you originally from? Vicky: I'm from London and grew up in Ham which is on the outskirts of Richmond. Question: Where do you live now & what drew you there? Vicky: I live in the (sometimes) sunny seaside city of Brighton. I lived and studied there for 3 years so had fond memories of the place and when me and my boyfriend Chris were looking for somewhere more permanent to live it seemed like the ideal place, by the sea, the downs, lots of art, music and cafes and the Lanes. Question: Where is your studio and can you describe it for me? Vicky: My studio is the spare room in the house overlooking the garden. It's quite full with 2 desks, my computer, printer, scanner, collection of paper and a large number of my products (prints, cards, badges). It now frequently also contains my cat Cleo who enjoys the view from my desk and an assortment of cushions.Question: Who or What is your biggest inspiration? Vicky: Art Deco, Art Nouveau, 60's psychedelia and contemporary music are my biggest inspirations. I think when I first discovered Indie music in the mid 90's that had quite an effect on the sort of artist I wanted to be. Then when I was studying in my teens I was introduced to Erte, Mucha, Beardsley and a 60's exhibition at the design museum. I think my Dad may have had a hand in this too! Question: Tell us about a favourite project you've recently completed. Vicky: It would probably have to be the Tile Art App illustrations I created for Microsoft. It was a perfect project, a really open brief and a great bunch of people to work with. It was quite a short timescale too, and with no set theme it was a challenge knowing where to start! I quickly came up with a space theme though and they seemed to like it! I decided to create my range based around the retro space inspired adventures of a girl and her cat (called Cosmic Kitty and Astro Girl). One of the really exciting aspects of this project is that bits of the design can be transparent so you can see the background clearly through the helmets as you move the designs on the phone. I created all the images as paper collages with a bit of splattered paint to create stars for good measure!Question: Who are your illustration heroes? Vicky: Lots of late 19th/early 20th illustrators (Erte, Aubrey Beardsley, Mucha, George Barbier), 60's illustrators like Peter Max and some more contemporary illustrators; Catalina Estrada, Lush Designs, Oreli (an illustrator I discovered in Brussels), Darling Clementine and too many more to mention. Question: Who is your design hero? Vicky: William Morris; and I always turn to his product and pattern designs for inspiration. Question: Do you have a method for dealing with the feeling of having no ideas? Vicky: I often look for inspiration (both my favourite artists and new illustrations on sites like 'Hire an Illustrator' and 'Print Pattern'), make notes, look through my old sketch books and if all else fails go for a quick walk or swim - inspiration always strikes in unusual places! Question: If you could travel back in time which period would you visit & why? Vicky: I'd like to go back to the 1920's. It looks like a really exciting time with all the flapper fashions, music and of course the wonderful illustrations. I also have the right hair for it! Question: Who would you like to have as your muse if your were painting their portrait? Vicky: I'd like to have painted a young Marianne Faithful or Penelope Tree. They epitomize the fashions of the 60's and I expect they would have had some entertaining stories to tell whilst I painted.