As November seems to be passing by at an alarming rate, I am busy working on fresh designs to launch in the new year, which includes some location specific work. I have spent some time focusing on locally themed art over the last few months. My coastal body of work has always been close to my heart. The early designs were inspired by Robin Hood’s Bay. However, they were never meant to depict those places specifically, to the point that the products wouldn’t sell elsewhere. I have done the opposite of that this year, and created some prints that are entirely meant to represent the local area. I began in April with my Whitby map design. I’m proud of this piece of work. It took way longer to finish than I thought it would; but then again most of my favourite pieces of work do.
Robin Hood’s Bay
This made me feel inspired to create other pieces, with a local focus. So far I have concentrated on Robin Hood’s Bay. My upbringing in this quaint village was perfect, and I have always felt lucky to have been brought up in such a picturesque location. I have just received my first run of prints and cards based on the village, and tea towels are set to arrive next week!
Amidst all of the time I have spent working on art and thinking about the type of designs I want my collection of products to include for 2018, I have finally got around to refreshing my branding. When I first launched my business, I very quickly settled on a logo. It featured ‘Jessica Hogarth Designs’ in a perfect rectangular shape and really does not represent what I am about as an artist at all. I always hoped that my business would take off, and become my full time living. However, I guess I didn’t think seriously enough about my branding at the start, and what all of my products would grow to look like featuring this logo down the line; if that actually happened. I considered changing it after a year or so, and didn’t. Finally over 5 years on, with the help of one of my amazing friends (Megan of Megan Claire), I have a new logo that I believe echoes the feel of my work.
I used to refuse to use black in any of my personal illustration work, thinking it was too ‘hard’ for some reason, and always opted for navy. That too has since changed. I use a lot of colour in my work, particularly blues and mustards tones. That said, I was reluctant to settle on just one for my logo. Therefore, the original version of it is simply black wording on a white background with the option of altering the colour, dependent upon how its being used.
The circle will be used for stickers and such like, and they too will vary in colour depending on where they are placed.
A large proportion of my business is actually the card publishing side of things. However, I primarily see myself as an illustrator and surface pattern designer, hence the tagline. My love affair with surface pattern began in second year of art college. I find myself wanting to put every design I create in to a repeating print, but of course, that’s not always practical.
I am really excited to have a more consistent brand identity, and one that I feel really represents me.
The image below shows some of the newly packaged tea towels. The blurb will accompany a selection of the product packaging.
The run up to Christmas will see me heading to London for meetings, and a photoshoot with Yeshen Venema. I’ve also got a couple of local festive markets, and of course, lots of designing to do!
Whitby Book Shop is one of my favourite stockists. Situated on a quaint cobbled street a few minutes walk from my studio, this outlet is somewhere that I am proud to have my work stocked. We have been talking about me creating an illustration for them for some time, and I finally got time to do it earlier last month. We opted to put it on to tote bags initially, and they arrived in store this morning! They are already out on the shelves ready to purchase, and I popped in this afternoon to see them for myself. I often get commissioned to create artwork with an architectural theme and I am working on a few more pieces for other clients at the moment, and I will share the details of these in due course!
The Whitby Book Shop is situated on Church Street in the old part of the town, which is lined with unique shops and cafes. The street leads up to the famous 199 steps, at the top of which is Whitby Abbey.
The original illustration.
Me with the bag!
The one colour grey tote bags.
Today I decided not to answer my emails, or do the admin waiting for me, and instead focused solely on doing something creative.
After spending a couple of hours drawing letters of the alphabet, I put them in to format below, and then decided that I would have a browse on Skillshare. I enrolled on a course taught by Ed J Brown entitled ‘Speedy Sketch Challenge: Learn Fast Inking & Combat Mental Blocks!’ This sounded like it would be right up my street, so I watched the videos and then did the challenges. My drawing style isn’t what I would necessarily describe as energetic – whilst quirky and a bit off kilter, each and every line in my illustrations are generally quite considered, so it was really helpful to do some timed drawings and not actually worry what they looked like. I’ve added a few of the sketches below. We were encouraged to use ink in the class so I did this for a while, and then experimented with pens and pencils too. I have thoroughly enjoyed my day and I plan to take part in lots more classes so watch this space!
My alphabet letters
A series of 5 minute sketches.
10 minute sketch – Santa Monica