The Journey of a Print: the Poppy

We asked our print designer, Caroline Taylor, to give us an insight into the creative process behind this season’s poppy print. Caroline’s hand-sketched, intricately detailed prints feature in our ‘British Botanicals’ themed Spring/Summer ’15 collections and play an important role in shaping Madderson’s signature style.

What led you to illustration and print design?

For as long as I can remember art has always been a huge part of my life. My grandfather was a remarkable painter and my grandmother a talented seamstress - my creativity must be ingrained.

I am a self certified doodler and as a child would spend hours drawing fluid curvaceous patterns, no obvious subject matter just simple shapes; it was here my interest in the serpentine line with its symmetrical, spiraling and meandering patterns grew.  The natural curvature of flowers serves as my constant inspiration and this is where my distinctive linear illustrative style was born. 

 Walk us through your creative approach…

I always begin with a still life scene. Working from a photograph or a picked flower, I pencil sketch what I see in it’s truest form.

I then begin inking and it’s at this point that my unique illustrative style becomes apparent; focusing on the fluidity of each petal or leaf and then following its natural contours, which can be missed at first glance. 

I then move onto the digital process, scanning my illustration to begin manipulation. I always draw in pen and ink as I feel colour distracts my eye, so digitalising a design and adding colour is when the image comes alive. I am continuously playing with different colour combinations & always have colour charts to hand.

What was the inspiration for Madderson’s SS15 botanical prints? 

A visit to my hometown in rural South Wales is often where my inspirational journey begins. I never cease to be amazed by the unappreciated beauty of the natural environment, the hidden plant life entwined in hedgerows, fields and woodlands. This season’s poppy print, however, began particularly close to home, in my father’s garden. The layers of wafer thin petals contrasted by the stark cluster of stamen in the center of the flower immediately caught my attention.  

What would be the ‘ultimate’ for you? 

My ultimate would be to create a range of beautiful evening wear prints for Madderson, (showcased at London Fashion week of course!). To see my prints on a Fashion Week catwalk would be unbelievable.

I often design with an individual fashionista in mind and I’m a huge fan of Olivia Palermo’s style. She is effortlessly chic and wears such interesting fashion combinations, often teaming clashing prints. Having a style icon like her wearing a Caroline Taylor creation would be a huge honour.

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