Featured Illustrators

Hollie Martin

April 2014

Geometry goddess, Hollie Martin chats with us about her upcoming exhibition 'States and Spaces', her inspirations and work processes. Hollie has recently collaborated up with The Club of Odd VolumesA Happy Death Paper CoThe Artistry and The Cool Hunter! Be sure to check out her amazing must-see blog list. Thanks Hollie!

Tell us about yourself? Where did you study? What were your first influences?

I am a Central Coast based Artist and went to art school in Newcastle straight after I finished school. Back then it was a TAFE course that the school offered so I gained my Advanced Diploma in Fine Arts. I majored in printmaking, exclusively silkscreen and got a real feel for working in editions and repeating processes - something that has stuck with me and shaped my approach to working creatively. My first influences were artists like Andy Warhol, Jean Michel Basquiat, Robert Rauschenberg, Richard Diebenkorn and Jasper Johns. I also began studying Design at COFA but after one year realised that it wasn’t for me and decided to pursue a career in art.

Where did you discover your love for geometry?

My interest in geometry has developed quite naturally. It began with a desire for mark making and just generally wanting to create in a fast and simple way so I used to draw unbalanced clusters of triangles, which en masse were great visually. Eventually the shapes became a series of spaces for the introduction of colour, which is now a major component of my work. I don’t approach the geometric component in a mathematical way. I’m very much fascinated by the geometry that can be found in the natural world, which influences more of an intuitive approach to my work.

What is your creative process like?

I must say I’m a bit of a workaholic and usually create too much work for myself. If I’m not doing work then I’m most likely thinking about work. I work better later in the day so probably don’t start actually arting until about midday. The morning is spent sending or replying to emails and contributing to social media, an integral tool for my practice. In terms of creating I like to implement processes to help me execute an idea. These processes are always being tweaked and refined. With recent work everything happens step by step – the surface is built/prepared and then the shapes are drawn up in pencil. After this I decide on the colour combination (usually about 6 colours) and then I begin the meticulous act of painting each shape.

What are you working on now?

At the moment I am head deep in completing a series of acrylic paintings on timber for my upcoming exhibition 'States and Spaces' at China Heights Galleryin Surry Hills.  States and Spaces consists of twenty three circular acrylic paintings on plywood board. Twenty one of those works are 300mm in diameter and two of them are 800mm in diameter. My approach to this body of work is simple. I attempt to create something that is visually exciting and makes people happy but essentially I create because I have the need to. This body of work is no different and true to form, you can expect to see a mass of shapes and lots of colour.

Who inspires your creativity? What blogs are a must follow?

I go through phases of being influenced by different movements, mediums, and creatives. I do find myself constantly influenced by the design world and by creatives like Elke, Studio Fludd and Kitiya Palaskas but wouldn’t necessarily place myself or what I do in that world. The Internet and accessibility to the work of so many amazing creatives means that there’s always something new to be inspired by. Being able to connect with other artists and designers means everything to my practice. I am inspired by other creatives who have work that I connect with and work ethics that I aspire to. Blogs and creatives that I’ve been going gangbusters for recently are Alex Proba’s Poster A Day blog, Pitch, Sight Unseen, Camille Walala, Tim Colmant, Designspiration and always my ‘go to’ source of inspiration is Pinterest.

Whats type of collaborative work have you been up to lately? What have been some of your favourite projects to date

Recently I had the opportunity to work with the good people at The Club of Odd Volumeson a series of cushions, pillowslips and tea towels. This was a fun project because I was interested to see how my work translated to textiles and I now know that I’d love to do more work on fabric. I’d love to release a range of silk scarves! I have also worked with Adelaide based stationary company A Happy Death Paper Co on a series of cards for their collection and most recently I had the exciting chance to work with the amazing people at The Artistryand The Cool Hunter on a large scale floor installation for The Art Hunter, an amazing creative display that also launched one of Jaguar’s new four wheel drive vehicles.

What’s on the cards for the rest of the year?

The rest of 2014 is looking really bright from where I stand at the moment. After my solo exhibition in May I plan on launching an online print store so this will take up some time. I also have some commissions in the works and later in the year I plan on transferring my work and ultimately myself to London ☺ I feel really positive about what’s to come.


Special thanks to my amazing photographer: Gonçalo Mendonça


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