This week’s featured artist Taylor Rose tells us about her experience of growing up in New Hampshire, her creative process, her favorite superhero and more. Check out her interview and some beautiful examples of her art below!
BBP: Describe your style in 5 words or less!
Taylor: Whimsical, nature, inspired, childhood adventures!
BBP: What is your creative process like?
Taylor: I often start with a written story that I’ve made up for the illustration, and once the written concept is finished I’ll make a hand full of thumbnails to work out a composition. After that I’ll sketch everything out with pencil, then go over that with a calligraphy ink brush and micron pens. Next I’ll add a layer of watercolor, then scan in the piece to begin the digital painting process. This involves hundreds of layers of digital watercolor painting which is accomplished with high resolution scans of actual watercolor markings.
BBP: Do you always work from the same a spot- a studio, a particular desk, etc.- or do you move around?
Taylor: I’m always in the same spot in my studio space at home, we’ve got really nice lighting here and lots of birds to watch outside my window. I’ve had the same desk setup for years now, hand painted with ever changing colors and always filled with little toys and collectibles for inspiration.
BBP: How has your style changed over the years?
Taylor: Oh definitely! I feel like each year I seem to get more and more detailed with my work. I try to create pieces that really pull people in, and the more they look at it, the more they discover. In a lot of ways it has stayed very similar as well, I always want to maintain a cartoon/illustrative style with the ink work and always pulling inspiration from nature and childhood memories.
BBP: Tell us about the colors you use- how do you choose them, what inspires them?
Taylor: My colors are usually more on the brighter side, I really enjoy creating night time or sunset scenes, combining deep purples and blues with pops of red or orange. I am always pulling from actual nature scenes for inspiration and I love looking to animated films and cartoons for new ideas.
BBP: Did you always know that you wanted to design for kids and families?
Taylor: Oh yes! Even as a kid when I was immersed in artwork and drawing I still felt like I was on a serious mission, always dreaming of making cartoons and children’s books when I grew up.
BBP: Do you think art is important for kids? Why?
Taylor: I can definitely vouch for the importance of art for kids because it was honestly the most important tool I had growing up. I was definitely more on the quiet side in school, but my one constant in communication was always my art. Having a passion for something at a younger age helps in all aspects of growing up. Just about all of my closest friendships today were formed because of art.
BBP: Tell us about your favorite one of your designs on the site: Which one is it? Why? What inspired it?
Taylor: I think my favorite piece on the site right now is still “The Collectors.”
It really embodies a lot of what I want to accomplish in my illustrations. It’s completely inspired by collecting fireflies as a child, remembering how magical it all felt. I’m constantly holding on to those memories and keeping them strong by expressing and reliving them through art.
BBP: Do you have kids? Tell us about them!
Taylor: I don’t have any kids just yet, but definitely envision starting a family down the road. I am always so inspired by a children’s views of the world, we should all take more time to experience the world as they do.
BBP: Any pets?
Taylor: Not these days, we find ourselves on the move a lot, traveling to go on hiking and snowboarding adventures so we have to hold off on pets right now. I was lucky enough to grow up with dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and goldfish. I have a huge love and appreciation for animals and I am determined to have a dog named Scully and a cat named Mulder when we decide to finally settle down somewhere.
BBP: Where did you grow up?
Taylor: I grew up in New Hampshire, it was a great place to adventure as a kid. Lots of forests and access to rivers, mountains, lakes, and ocean waves.
BBP: What was your most prized possession as a kid? Tell us about it!
Taylor: I think it must have been my dinosaur collection. I remember being completely obsessed with them as a kid, especially my Stegosaurus. It’s such an amazing and magical thing to learn about, that these creatures used to walk the Earth, I remember being completely captivated by that, and still today! Also my VHS copy of “The Goonies.”
BBP: What did your room look like growing up?
Taylor: I remember the room being a pale pink type of color which was funny because I was so anti pink as a little girl. I filled that little space with lots of dinosaurs, ninja turtles, and my hamster Flash.
BBP: Who is your favorite superhero and why?
Taylor: My favorite hero will forever be Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I remember growing up and watching this awesome high school girl completely kick the butts of all that was evil in Sunnydale, CA. It was so empowering then, and I still have such an attachment to the show and character even today.
BBP: What’s your favorite midnight snack?
Taylor: Popcorn, lots and lots of popcorn!
BBP: Favorite movie?
Taylor: “Song of the Sea” created by Cartoon Saloon in Ireland.
BBP: Beach or mountains?
Taylor: It definitely used to be beach but ever since moving out west to Oregon I am all about the mountains.
BBP: Coffee or tea?
Taylor: Tea! Tea all day every day.
BBP: Bungee jumping or skydiving?
Taylor: Skydiving for sure.
BBP: Tell us a fun fact about yourself!
Taylor: I can play ukulele and harmonica at the same time and I’m also completely obsessed with Swamp Thing.
Check out more of Taylor Rose’s artwork at her shop here!