Interview with Linda of Pool Pony Design: “Simple, balanced and pared back – with warmth”

Linda is a graphic designer all the way from Down Under. I personally discovered her prints while browsing Etsy and was really captivated by her simple, yet well-thought out designs. To see more of her works, visit her Etsy shop or webpage.

Have you always been interested in art? Yes – it’s always been an interest.

What is your background in design? Did you go to school for it or are you more self-taught? I didn’t study design at college. But I wouldn’t say self-taught either, because I learnt a lot about colour and design from my mother, from generous artist friends and from observation over the years.

What drew you to print and graphic design specifically? Print and graphic design have always been a big interest, perhaps because of a love of paper, the thrill of making multiple copies, and an interest in mid century modernism.

Print and graphic design have always been a big interest, perhaps because of a love of paper, the thrill of making multiple copies, and an interest in mid century modernism.

Do you also work in other mediums? I’m a bit of a dabbler, so I’ve tried lots of other mediums –  jewellery, ceramics, sculpture – all of which I’ve really enjoyed. But print has always been a bit special for me.

How would you describe your design aesthetic? Hard to pin it down but I think the aesthetic I try to work towards is simple, balanced and pared back – with warmth.

I think the aesthetic I try to work towards is simple, balanced and pared back – with warmth.

What sorts of things do you gain inspiration from? I often feel inspired by beautiful spaces, imagining what sort of images would work well in them. I also get inspired by the process itself – starting with a simple idea and seeing it evolve, playing around with colour and shape and line until it looks right to me.

Your work is described as having a “mid century modern twist” in your Etsy profile. What types of art from this era are you captivated by? I particularly like the furniture, architecture, design and film from that period – Eames, Noguchi, Aalto, Jacobsen, Holm, Ozu and Utzon, to mention a few that spring to mind.

Can you describe your design process? What steps do you take to turn an initial idea into a completed work of art? I don’t have a set process, and am always open to the work taking an unexpected direction, and going with that. A lot of the time I just play around with an idea until it starts to take shape, which I should add doesn’t always happen – sometimes part of my process is to abandon and run! But I’ll spend a lot of time playing around with the line and the colours. Often I’ll leave a piece aside for a few days or even weeks and then come back to it fresh and, with a bit of luck, know what it needs to make it work better.

I don’t have a set process, and am always open to the work taking an unexpected direction, and going with that.

What attracted you to Etsy as a place to sell your work? Etsy provides good exposure to a lot of people quite quickly, and it has a nice community feel to it.

How long have you been selling prints on Pool Pony? Since 30th March 2011

What do you see as the benefits and drawbacks to selling your work online versus in, for instance, a gallery? I love exhibiting in galleries, and I love visiting them too – you can’t replace the experience of seeing an actual artwork in front of you with an online image of it, and it’s very satisfying to work towards a gallery show, and see your work up on a big crisp white wall. But I’d have to say the online experience is great too – the control you have over the display, the interaction with online visitors, and the potential for reaching a lot of people quickly makes it a very worthwhile thing for artists to do.

I’d have to say the online experience is great…the potential for reaching a lot of people quickly makes it a very worthwhile thing for artists to do.

How do you choose which prints to sell? Are there a lot of designs you keep to yourself? There are a few prints that I’ve made especially for friends which are one of a kind. Other than that, not really – although I won’t release something until I think it’s finished.

What types of art do you display in your home and/or workspace? At home, mainly the work of friends, and in my workspace, my own prints on rotation so I can ponder what I do and don’t like about them, and incorporate what I learn into new work.

Why do you design? What motivates you? I don’t really know – it’s just something that I’m drawn to do.

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