We are delighted to have worked with artist Emma Block to create 2017’s thread festival image (above). This is the fourth year that London-based illustrator Emma has designed the artwork, her trademark style now synonymous with the textile event. We caught up with the extremely talented artist to hear a little more about the inspiration and execution of the image and what and who get her own creative juices flowing….
Q.We love this year’s thread imagery Emma, how did you go about creating it?
A. This thread illustration was all hand painted with gouache. I picked a limited palette inspired by autumnal colours. The original paintings were edited on photoshop. which gives the woman a crisp graphic feel against the background.
Q. How did your artistic talents develop and where did your love of illustration come from?
A. I always drew and made things a lot as a child. We had a ‘making cupboard’ in my house, which was always full to overflowing with glitter and pipe cleaners and paint.
I have always loved art and knew I wanted a career in the creative fields. I did a national diploma in art and design instead of A levels, and then went onto a BA in illustration. After graduating I started illustrating full time immediately, so my life has pretty much been full on art since I was 16!
Q. You are a wonderful supporter of thread. Can you share with us why you enjoy the festival and what you are looking forward to at this year’s event?
A. thread festival is such a great creative day out, even for someone like me with only basic sewing skills. My favourite part of the festival is the talks and seminars. I have seen some great talks from Tilly from Tilly and the Buttons and Lisa Levis.
Q.Who inspires you most in the illustration world and are there any bloggers or creative types that you follow?
A. I am really inspired by mid century illustration, like Mary Blair and M Saesek. In the world of contemporary illustration I love the work of Brigette Barager, Bodil Jane and Caitlin McGauley. The House That Lars Built and Design Sponge are my favourite creative blogs.
Q.Working with brands including Etsy and Stylist Magazine to provide workshops sounds amazing. What kind of workshops do you offer?
A. I teach watercolour and brush lettering workshops, which I can adapt to special events. For example I taught a drop-in workshop creating abstract watercolour pieces at a Pinterest awards party, inspired by the trend for large-scale watercolour feature walls. The most special workshop I’ve taught was in London zoo inspired by Oasis’s new collection of animal prints. emmablock.co.uk instagram: emmablockillustration
thread…festival of textiles takes place on Saturday 30 September 2017 from 9am – 6pm. For £5 advance tickets click here. A day ticket includes access to the marketplace, talk programme and exhibitions. A full schedule of bookable workshops will be available shortly via craft.farnhammaltings.com. A workshop ticket includes day entry to the festival.
About thread: Spend the day celebrating textiles at thread! Browse the curated marketplace for artisan fabrics and haberdashery to purchase for your own textile projects or buy from artists and makers showcasing their own unique handcrafted work. Join in with the programme of talks, exhibitions and demonstrations from professionals or sign up to one of the bookable workshops. Following it’s success in 2016, thread will once again be exploring the social and ethical aspects of textiles through activities. Join our community of textile enthusiasts for a sociable and inspiring day out. A full listing of marektplace exhibitors, the talk programme and additional information will be available shortly at craft.farnhammaltings.com and follow us on Twitter and Instagram for news and programme updates.