Designer Spotlight: Carol Robinson

HELLO, PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF:

Hello! I am Carol Robinson. I am an artist and surface pattern designer and I live in London with my husband, three sons and our min schnauzer dog named Oli. I am a massive Francophile and would love to move to the South of France and spend my days painting in the sunshine.

HAVE YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO BE SURFACE PATTERN DESIGNER/ILLUSTRATOR?

I studied Fine Art at Brighton University and worked as a fine artist before having children. I only began to work in surface pattern design over the past few years when my children were more grown up. I have always had an interest in pattern, colour and design.

WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY/WEEK LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?

After I have dropped my children at school I take my dog on a walk through our local woods, which is a great start to the day. I will then spend time on the computer and sort out any tasks that need completing. I don't usually start designing until after lunch as I feel more creative later in the day. Sometimes I create at night when everyone is in bed as I love the silence and always come up with my best ideas then.

IF YOU COULD GIVE YOUR 10 YEARS YOUNGER SELF ONE KEY PIECE OF ADVICE OR AN INSIGHT, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

To have more confidence in yourself and your abilities.

WHEN YOU FEEL STUCK OR IN A DESIGN RUT, HOW DO YOU GET YOURSELF OUT OF IT AND BACK ON TRACK?

I will go for a walk with my dog as I can think clearly when I am walking. I walk in the woods and nature is my greatest source of inspiration. I also just pick up my coloured sharpies and start to doodle and draw anything that comes into my head and before I know it a new design begins to take shape among the scribbles!

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGN TOOLS?

I love my uni pens and sharpies  and of course my wacom tablet.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR DESIGN PROCESS? 

Favourite apps and programs. I like to mostly hand draw my basic motifs using uni pens and sharpies and then scan into Photoshop. I add a lot of extra detail using my wacom tablet. I am in the process of teaching myself illustrator and have just discovered all the available photoshop brushes!

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGN PROJECTS TO DATE?

I am quite new to surface pattern design and licensing. I have licensed some fabric and card designs and co illustrated a series of adult colouring books. I am now working on a portfolio of patterns for licensing and have printed up my first batch of fabrics  to make into products to sell under my own label which I am really excited about.

WHO ARE YOUR DREAM CLIENTS OR WHAT IS YOUR DREAM PROJECT?

I would love to produce a fun and colourful childrens fabric collection a range of products under my own label.

THERE HAS BEEN AN ART SUPPLY SANCTION IMPOSED AND DESIGNERS ARE ONLY ALLOWED TO POSSESS 3 ITEMS/TOOLS, WHAT DO YOU CHOOSE?

I would choose my sketch book, a pencil and a uni pen.

WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION?

I love mid century design and modern art painters such as Matisse and they influence my work. I obtain most of my inspiration from nature, but I also like to keep pace with modern culture and new design influences.

WHO WOULD YOU SAY THE GREATEST DESIGNER IS?

I would say William Morris

WHEN I'M LONG GONE:

I hope people remember me for someone who believed the world can be shaped by our imaginations and made more beautiful by our creativity and I hope I can can contribute to it in my little way.