Tell us all about you...
I was born and raised in South London and now split my time between Leyton, East London + Paris. I worked for 7 years as a designer in 2 different studios in London, Williams Murray Hamm and then Our Design Agency (ODA). I started lettering whilst I was working at ODA, going on a sign painting workshop with Nick Garret over a weekend. I started painting signs for fun and posting them on my instagram and it started growing. I then started focusing on lettering in my design jobs, the lovely team at ODA knowing that any brief they gave me would have type ideas! I also got a few freelance jobs that all led towards deciding to leave my job as a Designer and try full time as a Lettering Artist ...
What is inspiring you in the world right now?
People, places, things, tools and resources, films/tv, etc. Paris as a whole - all the old lettering that is still around. I have also started to appreciate sculpture more - I think I am finding it interesting to look at 3D forms, which is often how I start to see some of my work - not so much as letters but as 3D shapes. I've been exploring recently in other angles to paint them at, that treat them more as structures...
How do you begin your creative process, tell us about what the process was doing the mural for our London studio?
The team got in touch and sent some photos of the wall, we spoke about the phrase 'K.I.S.S', style and colours (it is nice to sometimes be sent a strict colour pallette - sometimes when it is left to me I can spend hours and hours looking at colour options). I went away and did some sketches. Then we tweaked colours back and forth till we had a final layout. I popped into the studio to check paint finish etc and there was a curveball of a new phrase.... from K.I.S.S. to 'Could it be better'! So back to sketches...! Once the final layout was agreed on, I got paint samples and prepped the trace at size for the piece - this is a single line outline of the whole piece which I then cover in chalk on the back and draw through from the front to transfer the piece onto the wall. Then braved the tube with all the paints + a good friend support artist Jason Drake to paint!
What is the weirdest thing you’ve had to letter?
I didn't end up painting it, but I was asked how much it would be to paint a 'large' sign to go above someone's bed that said 'Sleep is the baby mumma of death' ...
Best advice for someone who wants to become a lettering artist or something you wish you knew when just starting out?
Don't lean on instragram for your inspiration - look outside / around. Try to find a new angle on it all by being inspired by something that isn't lettering. There are alot of great great signapitners who have been doing this for years and years - and you can't expect to be able to paint a straight line within the first week - its hours and hours of drilling practice to control the brush and understand the forms - I think learning from the traditional craft of sign painters has helped me understand letter formations / how letters are built alot more than my days as a designer in looking at typography. I think in today's world there is that whole instant thing/ short attention, but with lettering I think patience is really key.
Something you cannot live without?
My iPad... is that a bit boring? Broccoli!?
Last emoji you used?
Describe your work in three words.
Colourful, Positive, Bold (!?)
What would you be doing if you were not lettering?
I often think I would really enjoy being a hairdresser!
Describe your perfect day off?
A nice walk, delicious lunch with a glass of wine (daytime drinking on a day off feels so decadent), an afternoon in a gallery, an evening dinner at a round table with friends!
Finish this sentence, you might not believe this but…
I was on the Apprentice once as one of those mugged-off designers when I was a junior at WMH and they came to us for one of their tasks... I wore a bright (like highlighter bright) yellow jumper as I thought only my arm would be in it... but then it was full face etc and I looked ridiculous. - Remember the Alex Mills - the vampire guy ... I was on his 'team'.
Go-to song when you’re working?
Tough question... currently still can't get enough of Beyonce's latest Break My Soul...