- See more at: http://blogtimenow.com/blogging/automatically-redirect-blogger-blog-another-blog-website/#sthash.6XeXEVt9.dpuf The Curiosity Project: Curb Your Curiosity: Natasha Lawless Design

5 November 2012

Curb Your Curiosity: Natasha Lawless Design

Good morning everyone! How was your weekend? Apologies for the lack of posts over the weekend but we had a busy few days of house viewings so much of the time was spent keeping it up to showroom standards (virtually impossible with a resident two year old!) Thought we'd found an amazing house for us too, except that on closer inspection it was just too much work. Feeling a bit gutted about it as it was full of original 1930s features and so much light, but it wasn't quite right this time. We did manage to take our son to his first bonfire night celebrations though which was really magical to see through his eyes and quite a nostalgic experience for me as this was my first bonfire night in a few years. 

Reminder: Don't forget that registration for the Christmas Box Swap 2013 closes at midnight tonight, so make sure you've entered if you haven't already! 


Anyway, on with today's post which is another fantastic instalment of my regular feature 'Curb Your Curiosity' in which I interview a designer about their process, what inspires them and what tips and advice they can offer someone who is also working to produce and sell their own designs. 
Here's a real feast for the eyes. Meet Hackney based surface designer Natasha Lawless. Her work is truly inspiring with her use of geometric shapes and nod towards mid-century meets contemporary style. It has a playful,  3-dimensional quality and I'm absolutely in love with it. I want to fill my (new) home with her work and spend my days admiring it all...

©Natasha Lawless Design

• Introduce yourself to us! 
I’m Natasha, a British surface designer with Finnish roots and creator of Natasha Lawless Design.

• Describe your style...
I like to play around with naïve pattern-making and illustration. My work is heavily folk inspired, yet with a clean, contemporary aesthetic.

© Natasha Lawless Design

• What do you love about the medium you work in?
What I love about surface design is that it is so unrestricted. A surface can be anything from a wall to a mug, an album cover to a tea towel! It can migrate into fashion, interior design, graphics, illustration and even installation based work. It is such an exciting field to work in as the application of a design/idea has infinite possibilities. This I find exciting as I feel there is so much potential and it encourages me to push my ideas in all sorts of directions rather than being limited to always doing just one thing.

© Natasha Lawless Design

• Where do you find your inspiration- who or what inspires you?
Anybody who works to put their ideas into practice inspires me. People who realise their life is what they make it to be. My dad. Folk art. Most things Japanese (just not the kitsch stuff). Travelling and junk shops. I love rummaging for forgotten treasure! The best sort of inspiration comes when you’re not looking for it and it’s something instinctive, it just happens and suddenly you get a brilliant idea. It can come from anywhere – there are no rules. I keep folders and books of hundreds of clippings, images, flyers etc that I’ve gathered over the years that I like to flick through for ideas. Now the online equivalent is Pinterest, which I was obsessed with when I first discovered it!

• How do you translate your inspiration into a design?
I nearly always begin by drawing and mark making with whatever tools I feel like using; paint and brush, mono printing, bleach and ink or just the traditional pen and pencil. Once I have something I’m happy with, I generally then start to work on it on the computer and start to play around with different placements on whatever it is I’m designing for. I then usually make several different versions in different colourways to print out and see what I feel works best. It’s so much fun and so satisfying to watch a drawing develop into a finished design that then turns into a final product. I love every stage of the process.

© Natasha Lawless Design

• How do you structure your working day?
Every day begins with my daughter Anouk (I don’t need an alarm clock) waking my partner and I for breakfast which we all sit down to eat together in the kitchen. It’s then a mad flurry to get Anouk dressed, hair and teeth brushed and out the door in time for nursery. Once I have dropped her off, it’s a two minute trip down the road to my studio where I generally begin work at 9.30am. I always begin with emails and admin in the morning, packing orders, arranging for couriers etc and if I’m lucky get to do more creative things in the afternoon. I don’t really like stopping for lunch breaks so I generally eat whilst I work in the studio, unless I’m feeling extra indulgent, when I take a quick break in the brilliant café downstairs for some food and even sometimes cake.

• We all get creative block. How do you combat it?
I leave the project well alone and try to work on something else. I have learnt that the more you try to force something that just isn’t happening, the worse it gets and the worse you feel. When I have a complete block I do something completely different and try to forget all about it. The fact is I can’t help but have my projects always somewhere in the back of my mind. My mind is always looking for connections or inspiration even if I’m not immediately conscious of it, so I just try to relax and trust that something at some point will come, a spark that gets me going again.

• Share your favourite tool with us.
My trackpad. I’ve learnt to love it. My partner gave it to me as a present for my last birthday, but when I opened it I had no idea what it was! I’m not very technological at all!

• Describe your dream creative space...
Somewhere clean yet cosy with a beautiful big window looking out onto a garden or some sort of nature.

© Leslie Williamson

• What trends do you see emerging in pattern and textiles for 2013?
Big, brights and bolds and it looks like lots of green!

• What's the biggest lesson you've learnt on your creative journey so far & what advice would you give to a newbie?
I am normally a very impatient person and have always liked fast results. An important lesson I have learnt is that things take time and it is foolish to expect instantaneous results. My advice would be that as long as you believe in what you are doing, go for it and don’t be too afraid of making mistakes because you will, it’s just another part of learning and growing as a designer and as a business. The most important thing is to learn from mistakes and carry on little by little. Take baby steps not giant leaps to begin with and always be open and prepared to listen to others comments, even if you don’t agree with them! It’s valuable to have different perspectives on what you are doing. I am a firm believer that if you approach things little by little, most things can be achieved, as long as you’re not in too much of a hurry!

© Natasha Lawless Design

• What's on your bedside table?
Loads of books as the only time I have these days to read is when I’m in bed, though I’m usually too tired by the time I get there! There’s an enamel and lace framed collage I bought for Jay as a present from Jessie Chorley and Buddug’s brilliant shop on Columbia Rd called J&B The Shop. There’s also a plant, a glass of water, my make up bag, a hole puncher, some of my daughters story books, hair clips, some photographs of me when I was a little girl with my father and a dream catcher.

• Complete the sentence: "When I need to relax, I..."
...take a stroll in Victoria Park or along the canal, as unfortunately I don’t have a massive pine forest with waterfalls in walking distance from our flat in Hackney!

• You're planning your last ever meal and celebrating with a dinner party. You have 6 seats around your table-who would you invite to join you and what would you serve up?
First off definitely my dad who died earlier this year – he was an inspiration and a best friend. Nobody could ever make me laugh as much as he did! Keith Richards as I reckon he’d have a good story or two to tell around the dinner table, Carl Jung as I’d love to pick his brain, my partner Jay and my little daughter of course.

• Give us a song! Which one song helps you whistle while you work?
This is a new favourite and I can’t get it out of my head at the moment. ‘Give me water’ by John Forte and Valerie June.

That song is right up my street-thanks for the tip-off Natasha!

Follow Natasha Lawless:

No comments:

Post a Comment