Challenging the perspectives of what we define as Illustration with work that could also be described under the remit of graphic design or collage art. We crown Rosanna Webster as May’s Illustrator of the Month
Rosanna often consults with us using her illustrator membership in business, pricing and negotiation on some complex and always interesting commissions. A few years back a moving image commission by Stella McCartney propelled her work to the fore and led to a range of opportunities. Her client list includes Dior, Oakley, Urban Outfitters, Random House, and The New York Times.
By combining fashion portraiture and landscape stock photography she creates new meanings through multi-layering imagery rich in colour, form and movement which is gaining great traction. Rosanna’s work often falls into the remit of fashion editorial but is not limited to this, developing from moving GIF to more recently videography and filmmaking.
Can you tell us about the Stella McCartney project for POP Eau De Parfum and how this opened you up to new clients:
Stella McCartney was fun because I was given free rein, the brief was completely open – we were given the bottle and were asked to interpret ‘Pop’ in our own way, through our own medium. This is often what client’s will come to me with, so taking a product or a simple model shot and creating a world around it, like digital set design.
We sneaked a peak at some of your beautiful photography work in which we really admired your composition, that skill obviously leads directly into your collage work. Do you use any of your own photography in your GIF/collage work and how do you feel about using stock libraries?
I sometimes do yes. My photo’s often serves as a way to catalogue textures and references that then feed back in to my work. I recently worked on a project with Adobe Stock and It’s Nice That – where I was asked to create work using only their stock library, I wanted to make work that felt elevated from what you might expect to find in a stock library.
Adobe Stock / It’s Nice That
Adobe Stock / It’s Nice That
Can you talk about your creative process and give some examples of recent collaborations?
In terms of collages I usually jump straight in. While I may have a general direction, I won’t pre plan or sketch out a composition – I start cutting bits up, bringing in elements, textures and shapes and move things around until something starts to click. It’s almost like a backwards jigsaw puzzle, disassembling images and bringing them in to a new context.
With collage you have no boundaries, you can really experiment and play, something that in real life is small can become super sized, colours can be subverted and hyperreal, elements are removed from their original setting and are given a new context.
I’ve just worked on a job with Topshop, creating fun animations around their bags for their website. Again here I was given super simple products shots and a general mood and theme and was then allowed to play and have fun with this.
How does GIF/moving image vs static image help you communicate and standout to commissioners?
I think more and more clients want things to work to do both, to work across digital and print, so it helps that I can work between these.
We spotted your work for Slow Down Art Comp and the whole office fell in love – is something that you are wanting to explore in terms of static illustration/personal work)
I really like the idea of taking work outside of the digital context it usually sits within. I love Slow Down and their rugs, it’s really interesting to see how designs translate in to beautiful tactile objects. I want them all!
Where do you see the future of your work heading in terms of industry? What are your goals?
I think in terms of the industry with the rise of platforms like Instagram, I’ve noticed a lot more thought and care being put in to commissioning work here. And then in terms of personal goals, I’d love to push the animated side of my work and to develop longer format collaged films.
Models 1 New Faces from Rosanna Webster on Vimeo.
Instagram, Twitter. Check out Rosanna’s Website for full portfolio!