Priscilla Wilson Valor and Vellum
Priscilla Wilson has been drawing ever since she can remember, and got her start in art by portraying Disney characters from memory after going to the movies. She went to community college for four years and earned four Associates degrees in the arts and then transferred to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo to attain a BFA in Art & Design. Since then, she has been working full time at a graphic design firm, Kraftwerk Design, and does freelance odds and ends on the side. Which includes some submissions on Threadless.com and a few other t-shirt competition sites. Her work has appeared in Print Magazine, Lucky Magazine and an interview in Computer Arts magazine as well.
What are your inspirations? Most of my inspiration comes from whatever I'm experiencing in life at the moment. I live in a slightly rural area so nature plays a big role in the ideas that I get. I'm also influenced by the important people in my life – one of my designs, "My Father was a Sailor & My Mother, a Quilter", was a sort of tribute to my parents. Music can also inspire concepts as well. "Seven Swans" was a visual interpretation of Sufjan Stevens. Other favorite artists I think this can sort of tie in to the previous question about inspirations, but two of my favorite artists are Edward Gorey and Eyvind Earle. I admire them both, and they each have such wonderful styles. Gorey has the textural details and strange sense of humor. Earle has a whimsical feel with saturated colors and seemed to perfectly marry art and design. If you've ever seen Sleeping Beauty, you've seen his work as he did the backgrounds.
I also admire many of the artists that are on Threadless, but really, there are too many to list!
Favorite designers? To be honest, I do not follow designers as well as I probably should. I'm not very familiar with designers' names, and I think this is due in part to the fact that design is much more anonymous than art. Designers rarely get to sign their work. I'm more familiar with other design firms and I'd say one that I really admire is Turner Duckworth. They consistently turn out package designs that are both functional and award-winning. It's pretty difficult to achieve both of those qualities. I also like going to thedieline.com to keep up on what's happening with package design. Everyday, there's new inspiration and design ideas. Favorite projects you have done so far? Last year I got to work on some fun t-shirt projects. I worked on one for Maria Bamford, the comedian, and she was absolutely fabulous. I had the opportunity to work on a couple of band t-shirts: Dave Matthews Band and Hellogoodbye. What was great about those was that I actually got to go to a Dave Matthews Band concert with my sister and a friend. We got to see all of the merchandise booths and it was definitely a treat to see people buying my shirts! I also designed a shirt for Farm-Aid, the fundraising concert for farmers. Each of those projects was wonderful because the client allowed me a lot of artistic freedom. What would be a dream project for you? It would be great if a band that I really like wanted me to do their shirt or album designs. I'd probably be super nervous the entire time, but I'd still love to do it! Plans for 2009? I have a couple of collaboration projects that I'll be working on. I'll still be doing submissions for Threadless. Also, I should have some of my work in a couple of publications. I'll have a design in the Semi-Permanent book and then a section in a new book called TEES which should be out in September. Challenges of what you do? I'd say my biggest challenge is finding the time to do all of my freelance projects since I also work full time. There's the challenge of self-discipline and keeping myself motivated. Finally, there's the challenge that every artist and designer faces: always trying to better yourself.