Gemma Hewson (@_visuel_) is an Australian artist, designer and art director based in London. Having studied both fashion design and visual communications, her signature collage style fuses floral with high fashion in an incredibly captivating way.
How would you describe your work as an artist and designer?
Definitely mixed media. I like to use lots of different techniques to get a final result. Typically, I’ll start with print, then take it through digital processing where I experiment with effects to push it further. Recently I’ve been incorporating video into my collages, which is something I want to keep exploring. As I’m also a graphic designer, I like to experiment with typography as well.
Which mediums and themes do you pursue?
Collage mostly. I just like that there are no right or wrong answers. I love post-modernism for that same reason. Of course there are many variations of rebellion. I like to create beautiful aesthetics with no boundaries but still with a clean and minimal approach. For instance, I will search until I find an image and then do a couple of variations, but I don’t stick to a formula or a particular way of doing things. Other times I will be out and I will see a poster or architecture and think, that would be cool against this.
What kind of collaborations have you done?
I am currently working with a really interesting London-based fashion label called @thedesignstudio – Emily and her mum are a team and they make the most unreal bombers as well as a few other pieces. I’ve been making some moving image for the brand as well as collage. Soon to be finished, so watch this space 😉
What’s your process for forming concepts and ideas?
Most concepts are built upon finding the right image. I can scroll for days without finding anything, and then I’ll see something and think: That’s the one. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. I always keep an image library to consistently have new images to use. But lately I’ve been trying to use images fresh off the runway because I know that they are new.
What other artists and designers have inspired your work?
I love Ernest Artillo. He incorporates paintings and also works with fabric, sculptor and photography. His studio is enviable. I also love designers like Nick Thomm, as I am also drawn to bright colours.
Where else do you look for inspiration?
Instagram was a great source for inspiration, but I’m not vibing the app as much as I used to… I’ve started buying magazines again, as well as using Pinterest and a variety of graphic design websites. I love street style also, especially around east London. And, I absolutely love old record sleeves for design, colour and typography.
What are you working on at the moment?
At the moment I’m working on some posters for a personal project. I want to work on my typography and just found a gold mine of amazing typefaces. And, trying to finish my website (will it ever be ready?!).
What advice would you give yourself if you started all over again?
Definitely to not be afraid to make mistakes. I mean, I don’t feel I was particularly afraid… but I did waste energy sweating the small things instead of taking greater chances. When you’re young you can bounce back easily, but the older you get the worse the consequences. I wish I went to design college earlier. I definitely wasted a lot of years not taking anything too seriously.