An interview with Louise Hill, the artist and designer behind Louise Hill Design
If who you are with when you ring in the new year is any indication of what your year will be like, I had high hopes for mine. Now that it’s May, I am seeing that mine has and continues to be filled with creativity and positivity. 2016 began for me on a rooftop with Louise Hill, talented graphic designer and creator of her own gorgeous pieces. Inspired by her travels and living in Shanghai, Hong Kong and now Singapore, Louise creates work that is layered with meaning. Full of elements taken from photography, illustration, patterns and vintage Asian themes, Louise’s work has always been vibrant, echoing the pulsing lifestyle in Asia. Her most recent work in her new collections ‘Chinoiserie in Aquamarine & Powder Blues’ and ‘Chinoiserie in Neutrals’ are gorgeously subdued with details hand painted in gold. This new sophisticated range is designed to include imagery from many different parts of Asia in one print. There are references to Singapore, Hong Kong, China, India, Japan and Indonesia as a celebration of Asian culture as a whole.
In person, Louise exudes positivity and being able to hear about her life and background was truly an enjoyable experience. Ordinary People were honoured to be able to speak to the artist and find out what inspires her.
How did Louise Hill Design all begin?
A few years ago I decided to use my background and training of 20 years as a graphic designer to create my own little business. I got started with the love and support of the fantastic Hong Kong community who got behind me and helped my business grow into what it is today. My first prints featured iconic images of Hong Kong and over time I have added new designs to the range. After relocating to Singapore 2 years ago, I continue to design and create new images which reflect the time I have spent living and working in Asia and will be adding to my Singapore prints over time.
Your pieces are full of so many beautiful details that make up the whole. Can you tell us a little bit about your process?
My designs take a long time to put together and involve a lengthy process of finding all the imagery that I need and then putting it all together!
First of all, I start with a concept which I then sketch out in detail. From there I collect imagery in the form of found objects, fabric, my own photographs of places and patterns and collage them all together into one final artwork. My love for Asian cultural heritage comes through with a vintage feel to all of my prints. I seem to have a big library of designs stored in my mind and not enough hours in the day to get them all done!
You recently went to Hong Kong for inspiration on your new collection. What did you do there?
I followed some walking tours around with my camera to some of my favourite areas. Having lived in Hong Kong for several years it always makes me really happy to re-visit my old town. I had a lot of fun wandering the streets and also added to my vast personal collection of props with a few new additions. Hong Kong has a gritty edge about it which I love.
Is there any advice you would give to up and coming artists and designers?
I think good design comes with creative conceptual thought and I would always encourage upcoming artists and designers to be visually aware and up to date with what is going on in their particular field and to read blogs, follow other designers on Instagram and social media, visit exhibitions and take an interest in and talk to your fellow contemporaries.
But ultimately you should follow your own instincts and your heart and enjoy creating what makes you happy by sticking to your vision. Have fun, be brave, take a leap of faith and believe in yourself, whilst being prepared to be open to change along the way. Overnight success is not guaranteed, you have to be prepared to work really hard and put in the long hours to make it happen. My reward is in the incredible feeling of satifaction I feel when I receive positive comments and feedback about my work – it honestly makes my week!
I have a quote that I have on my wall in my home studio which is a daily reminder “Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try”.
I’d also suggest that designers use computers as a tool and not as a lone solution to good design. Young designers need to not only come up with a good design because it’s on trend and fashionable but because it also addresses the needs of the client. All good design is a careful balance of imagery which visually grabs you but also has a good solid concept behind it to have longevity. Some of the best design is often very simple.
Thanks so much for talking to us Louise!
Perhaps one of her gorgeous pieces would be the perfect addition to your wall at home or a thoughtful parting gift for a friend leaving Asia.
Where to buy:
All of her ‘Asia Series’ prints come in 3 different sizes and prices and can be printed onto a choice of etching paper or framed stretched canvas (as shown in pics above). They are delivered straight to your door from her printer in Hong Kong. Canvas option comes ready framed.
For more information and to keep up to date with her work and upcoming releases: