1. What’s your story? Where are you from?
My name is Katherine Plumb and I’m a print/textile designer based in London. I graduated last year, and since then I’ve been exploring my style as a designer while working part-time at a yummy restaurant – I love food.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.
I love using bold colours and shapes to create patterns and imagery. When I was at college I focused on making textiles as art, and when I was at uni I was a lot more interested in the design – repeating prints, the purpose of the textile, etc. Now, I like to see my work as a kind of combination of those two styles.
3. What is your favourite medium and why?
Screenprinting. It’s so satisfying to design something, make the artwork for the screen, expose it and pull the ink through to see it in a whole new way. I’ve loved knitting for a really long time and I struggled when I had to choose between the two at uni, but I definitely made the right choice (and still have a go on my knitting machine sometimes!). I also really like collage – I was never really into drawing since I couldn’t make anything look like it was supposed to – and it definitely changed the way I work when I realised I could do it.
4. What is your artistic process like?
I do a LOT of collaging. I’ll do it in the morning before I go to work, then I might come home and change a few things around before I stick anything down. Although I don’t think I’m ever thinking of anything in specific when I’m making the imagery, usually it’s just a case of looking around or thinking of places that may or may not exist. I went to Palm Springs for two weeks in June and you can definitely tell – I never used brown before I started thinking of the desert.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?
I can never put my finger on a direct influence… I’ve always loved artists like Anni Albers and Eva Hesse, designers like Lucienne Day and the Swedish collective Tio Gruppen. I went to the Nathalie Du Pasquier exhibition recently and absolutely loved her use of colour and forms, but you don’t really want to think about that when you’re designing or you might subconsciously copy it! Half the time I’m probably just inspired by the paper selection in the art shop and then from looking down at the floor on my way home, picking up on all the little shapes. Although I think my interest in textiles is definitely down to my Mum, she worked in a fabric shop and would always drag me in there!
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?
A big part! I feel like artists and designers look at small day-to-day experiences in an entirely different way to other people – I was separating eggs at work a few weeks ago and couldn’t stop thinking about how nicely the golden yellow yolk sat with the sandy shell and dusky blue egg tray… I think it’s hard to live in London and not constantly feel surrounded by art and so many amazing artists.
7. Where did you study?
I studied at Central Saint Martins for both my foundation and BA in Textile Design. I can’t even begin to imagine what I’d be like if I hadn’t gone there, they really encourage individuality – and the facilities/tutors/technicians are amazing!
8. Where do you see yourself in five years?
I just want to be working in a creative environment all of the time. My ideal situation right now would be working in a studio 9-5, and then being able to design and print on the side. There are so many ideas I want to explore but right now I feel like I don’t have enough time to do it all.
9. What about in ten?
Best case scenario: I’d have a little print studio of my own, maybe with a few friends, and could print all day everyday!
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?
Doing what I do makes me happy, and if other people like it then that’s enough for me. I like the Scandinavian concept of expressing yourself through your home, through the prints on your walls and cushions on your sofa. I just wish that more people would appreciate the process of screen printing – they’d rather spend less on something that’s digitally printed on synthetic fabric.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?
There’s no way I could pick a favourite food, but I REALLY like cheese a lot (especially with wine), and peanut butter is also in my top 10.
12. Favourite book?
I feel like I don’t make enough time to read anymore, but I did go through a phase a few years ago where I read the whole Millenium trilogy in a very short period of time.
13. Favourite genre of music?
No idea, I don’t think I have a favourite.
14. What are your hobbies?
Really love cooking, really wish I had more time for that.
15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?
Something creative I’d like to think. Since I like food so much, it could even be something to do with that.