Featured Artist: Katy Welsh
We met the superbly talented Katy Welsh, a Bristol-based artist, at New Designers. She produced a zine with us too! See what was said in our chat below…
Hi Katy! Thanks for speaking to us. Could you tell us how long you’ve been designing for?
The cheesy answer is to say that I’ve been designing all my life. But I guess I only got serious about it when I was 19, and started studying art full time. If we are talking getting paid to draw, thats been about two years!
We really love the zine you printed with us, could you tell us a little bit more about it, and your work in general?
I really enjoy styling and creating look-books for each new collection, and have always been searching for the perfect magazine-quality paper of your zine. When I found Print on Paper it ticked all my boxes, so that was fab.
I created the zine to showcase my new collection called Roma, which is a mid-century view on the ancient past, I looked a lot at museum collections and classical architecture and artefacts, translating them through a 1950s way of working which I am very drawn to, but putting my own contemporary, cut and paste aesthetic across all my designs too.
My work as a print designer spans lots of areas; interiors, fashion and stationery to name a few. Everything I do is driven by a love of the handmade, and underpinned by a strong handle on colour. I am especially passionate about the process of screen printing which inspires my whole ethos, and is a way of working that I strive to use as often as I can.
What do you think of the current climate for designers/illustrators? Is now a good time to be an artist?
I think now is as good a time as any to be an artist, I’m not sure how I would’ve done it in the pre-internet age. These days it’s pretty easy to find out who works where and just as easy to get your work in front of them, I’m sure I’ve got almost all of my commissions through people seeing my work on Pinterest or Instagram, and I’m cool with that!
However it can be tedious how these platforms have homogenised with what we all look at and how they’ve made trends omnipresent, maybe that is doing design a disservice too?
Following on from that, what advice would you give to somebody wanting to break into the industry?
Go to art college! It’s really important to find out what you like style-wise and ways of working that you enjoy. It’s also a super creative environment to try things out, I’m sure I would have found it so much harder to get into screen printing if I hadn’t had all the recourses and tuition so readily available.
When you’re “in the world of work”, my best advice is to be tenacious. I’ve been finding recently that you make you really do make your own luck, so if there’s something you want, go after it!
Finally, and most importantly… Out of everything you’ve ever created, which piece has been your favourite?
That’s hard! I think the answer to that question changes all the time. At the moment, I would maybe say the thing I enjoyed creating the most, was these large scale, still life wall hangings that I made in the last year of my degree, it was a great chance for me to try out lots of experimental printing techniques and I loved working on such a big scale.