Posts in Women of colour
Consciously Creative x Brand Ethos

The creative process is so important when expressing my ideas which is magnified when coupled with the vision of the brand ethos.

There were so many important elements to consider. The visual aesthetic, developing my own artistic expression and creating a more sustainable approach to the production methods.

Here - Cover Girl

Here - Cover Girl

Arguably the first element was challenging myself to create more pieces that would enable more choice for the consumer but also communicate the message in a clearer way, which is why I incorporated more text in some of the pieces.

I wanted to draw the viewer in, to challenge their perception of what they were initially seeing and for them to exam in more depth the various layers of the narrative. What is this piece representing? What is it about? A bit like you would in an art gallery but here there is no synopsis of the work.

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This design was titled ‘Here - Cover Girl’, namely because my work is inspired by models from various ethic backgrounds within Vogue Magazine who rarely grace the covers in comparison to white models. There is definitely a shift in inclusivity and representation but there is still some work to do.

There are personal elements weaved within the piece too, specifically relating to box ticking and knowing how to identify when you come from an ethnic background.

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If you are or have read some my of blogs in the past you will be familiar with my family being rather unique with my mum and her siblings born from different ethnic backgrounds and adopted. Which added an additional layer or detachment from any cultural identity let alone ownership of their ethnic background.

This in turn created difficulties around how I identify, even to this day and navigate how people view me. Fortunately this brand has allowed me to talk about these experiences with other mixed race people and express them creatively. Thus expanding on the brand, the visual aesthetic and hopefully people will identify with the art work / fashion design and wear it to either symbolise their own support of the brand based on their own story or want to support the visibility of women of colour - or perhaps both.

Team Seeking Time - Second Collection

The past couple of weeks have been solely focused on making links with people who can help me on my second shoot.

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I am looking forward to building a small team, not only because I want to share my vision with them but I am hoping there will be a creative buzz leading up to and after the shoot. If the last shoot taught me anything, it was that the preparation and the day on location was so inspiring and motivating. 

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But it wasn’t without a lot of preparation leading up to the day. However, this side of things I really enjoy as it’s another creative outlet for me, in addition to the drawings for the t-shirts. Like styling the looks, seeking out the locations and what I wanted to happen in each space, the sequences and so on.

This time, however, I need to challenge myself as this shoot will be in a studio. What is the overall aesthetic, how will the models be paired together? How do I maximise the amount of shots utlitising the range? 

So on to the next focus - team seeking, I have advertised on various spaces for a: 

- female photographer  

- stylist and  

-  models who identify as women of colour. Although I am thinking about male models too as I want to branch out and visually show the t-shirts are unisex. 

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In response to the adverts, the next couple of weeks will be used to meet with people who have expressed their interest in helping me.  The purpose of the meeting is to see if we are on the same page and they understand my creative vision but ultimately, can we work together? 

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In conjunction with responding to emails I have been putting together some mood boards to convey my ideas and what I want to portray, namely female empowerment and positively showcasing women of colour.

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This weeks plan it to keep collecting and finding inspiration  for the spring / summer 19 trends and incorporating those ideas with the styling of the shoot. I really like pattern clashes, layers with tulle and bright bold colours. Lets see what what the stylists ideas are.

Exciting times ahead. 

Print Decisions ~ DTG & Screen Printing

Reflecting, as always, on the designs I had created last week I knew I needed to make some decisions. Namely which ones I wanted to get samples of. 

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Also, I need to think of which designs work best for specific techniques such as screen printing or direct to garment (DTG). Both are great processes and I love them equally but of course the aesthetic is the key factor.

Screen printing needs simple art work broken down into colours for each screen, which is a perfect technique for my linear drawings. Whereas DTG is like a computer print out and can capture any detail, ideal for my colour designs that I recently created. 

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To help with the decision making I wanted to have a range of designs, to broaden my collection and appeal to people’s various tastes from simple to complex and colourful. But I also wanted to have some visualisations to help me view them as garments mentally. Below is my very quick version of this - no judgement please!   

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As basic as this is, it really helps me consider how the design works, what needs changing and more importantly, does it work? 

Focusing on the garment choices I am thinking about whether I should print just t-shirts or sweatshirts or both given the seasonal changes that will happen? What colour? I am feeling drawn to black as I think it compliments the designs and is another colour way to add to the collection too. 

Another consideration is other printing techniques such as silver or gold vinyl. I would love that for the linear designs on black sweatshirts. Black and gold specifically is the perfect combination in my opinion. 

Right, so this week I need to make any drawing refinements and send the images off to the printers I met with recently and ask them for a quote. Order the garment samples and printing equipment so I can screen print myself - got to save costs where I can but also so I can do some printing, I really love this technique. It is good to get hands on and embrace the next creative stage. 

Then the fun starts...