Our featured maker this week is illustrator Kirsty Riddell from Riddell Doodles. You can find her prints, cards, wrapping paper and tea towels in our pop-up shop.
Hi Kirsty. Tell us a bit about yourself?
Hi! I live in London and work part time as a SEN (Special Education Needs) Teaching Assistant whilst working on my artistic practice. I have always been interested in the arts, especially being brought up in a musical family, and have been drawing since I could hold a crayon! I studied Painting at Camberwell College of Art and then went straight into TA work after graduating. I started to slightly loose touch with my art practice whilst working at schools, until two years later I decided to apply to study Art Therapy. It was through creating artwork again for the portfolio for this course I realised how much I missed the art practice. I started up an Instagram account (@riddelldoodles) just to see if there would be any interest in my artwork and to put myself out there as an artist again. The feedback and response I got from this Instagram account was amazing and is actually what led me to develop my artistic career further.
What inspires you?
When I start a drawing I don’t have a pre-conceived idea of what the overall image will look like, being inspired by observing and responding to the world around me; shapes, colours, patterns, emotions, sounds etc… This allows the process to unravel and for the piece to find its own conclusion. This mindful approach that I have developed feeds my art practice.
What are your plans for the future?
I am very excited for future projects where I have been really focusing on collaborations with other artists. I love being able to bounce creative ideas with others, and think it is important to find ways of doing this if you work by yourself! This also means I have been able to work in fields I never thought I would and to learn about so many different aspects of the artistic industry. So far I have been developing work with a fashion designer, an upholsterer and origami artists. The origami greeting cards I have been working on with the amazing artists from Origami 4 Fun are currently on sale at the Urban Makers East pop up shop. I’m very excited for the development of much larger pieces we are currently working on to release in September 2017. For more information on the collaboration with Origami 4 Fun you can check out my blog