Brighton Creatives spoke with Olivia Savage. We first came across her work at the Brighton Graduate show in 2014. We were enamoured with one her collage Leaps and Boundaries featured in this post.
Please introduce what you do in your own words and what you’re currently up to?
I’m a visual artist working primarily in collage and screen print, whether that be making prints or original works, or designing artwork for bands, album covers, posters, flyers and events. I’m interested in architecture, landscape, plantlife, colour and the abstract style that came out of 60’s modernism, but my influences are constantly changing, and there are a few elements that I never seem to loose sight of, such as pools or people in water. At this exact moment in time I’m packing and unpacking and packing again for a 2 month trip to California I leave for at the end of August – hoping to find a hefty dose of inspiration out there, and wondering whether i’ve packed enough cameras!
Leaps and Boundaries
What’s your process?
Almost all my work begins life as a collage, whether that be made using my own photography or found images drawn from the constant collecting of postcards and other materials, or a mixture of both. Sometimes these end here, sometimes I scan them in to be further manipulated and sometimes I separate the elements and screenprint the image in a number of layers, which requires colour separation and simplification. This is where I think they really become artworks in their own right as it means me choosing 5 or 6 or so colours from a whole photographic palate which then give the image its atmosphere and almost an illustrative style, losing its realistic appearance.
We’re all about the Black Honey artwork, love the colours and tones – how important is this in your work, where do you get your colour inspo?
Ah thanks ! Black Honey are a great band and so enjoyable to work with – the perfect balance of ‘free reign – do whatever you want’ and having a clear aesthetic that they’re sure about so things don’t get too open and vague. I could easily say that my main colour inspiration comes from film – I love films that stick to a palate or that define different times or different places within the film using colour. In particular, classics such as City of God, Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers and Tarantino’s True Romance or Jackie Brown are beautifully toned, and I’ve always had a thing for great Sci Fi visuals such as those in Space Odyssey or David Lynch’s Dune, as well as predictably, anything by Wes Anderson.
Name your dream client and why?
At this stage, anyone that meant travelling for my work. Preferably based somewhere sunny!
Whats your personal favourite image you’ve created?
I’m a sufferer of that unfortunate artists’ syndrome which makes you dislike anything you’ve created almost as soon as its finished. I feel like my visual style is always absorbing inspirations and developing in my head much faster than my work production rate, which means a lot of dissatisfaction, and few favourites but at least it keeps me working! I’m really excited for the next few months – California trip aside, I’ve just moved into a brand new beautiful studio with my other half who’s running his graphic design business out of our space, and am looking forward to getting screen printing again on my return!
Can we take a gander at your workspace?