Fiesta! My working Process by Bryony Clarkson

Hi Today I am going to give you a bit of insight into my process of working. My previous career was as an Embroidery Designer for fashion and Interiors and I used to use a lot of appliqué to create my designs on Fabric, adding stitched lines for detail and expression. I now work in a very similar way, but with paper rather than fabric. 

I have a vast collection of coloured papers in my studio - that is my paintbox. I store them in big plastic boxes and an old map chest, coded into colours and types, so that's it's easy to delve through and find what I need. My papers are collected from everywhere - some I buy, but others are salvaged from old books, magazines, packaging and maps. 

When I first have an idea for a piece of work, I reach for my sketchbook and scribble down the ideas as pencil drawings. That way I don't loose track of my ideas until I have the time to work them up properly. I always use the same sketchbooks - Daler Rowney Ebony series. i love the quality of the paper and they are quite robust.

Cactus 1.jpg

Once I get down to work, the first thing is to choose a colour palette. I do this by snipping bits of paper and putting them together into a colour range, which I will often name, in case I want to come back and use it another time. 

Then I start cutting! I don't draw on the paper first, I just cut, thinking about the quality of the cut and the type of shape I want to make.

Then I build up layers to create each individual icon. Line details are added with a finalise pen - black or white - or sometimes coloured pencil. Once I am happy with each icon, I arrange them onto a page and stick them down, adding further background details around them. 

The finished collage is then scanned into photoshop, where I can clean the image up and make any further changes, such as whitening up or changing the background colour or, if it's a pattern, creating a repeat.

And - Ole!! - the piece is finished!