Some illustrators have that magical touch, the faculty to create tons of splendid pieces, to inspire... And believe me when I say, that Genine Delahaye is a truly one of those artists. (This girl is just pure gold!) Genine works constantly in tons of exciting commissioned projects (from nursery rhyme books to kids apparel) as well as in her (recently-lunched) wall art business Mini Moon Nursery (Her Alphabet poster is just too adorable. Definitely worth a visit!) Are you ready to know more about her art? Just keep on reading:
Q: Tell us about yourself. How did you first get into illustration?
A: First of all just want to say a big thank you for interviewing me; it’s a honour to be involved. Illustration is something I have always loved from a young age. It was the one subject I seemed to be good at in school and this only grew as I did. Towards my late teens during the process of decided ‘what I wanted to do’ career wise, I had a wobble! I started doubting my abilities and asking myself if I could really make a living from this. I listened to my head rather then my heart and decided to go into administration. After a few years of working as a Personal Assistant to the joint commissioning officers at my local council I came to a crossroad. I was unhappy in my job and decided life was too short not to go for your dreams and take a risk!
I started applying for creative positions but with no college or university experience I found nobody wanted to take me seriously…until I came across Sugarcube Ltd, a lovely little childrenswear print design studio based in Shoreditch. I took a admin role with the scope for technical training on the side and over the next few years I watched the in-house designers work and tried to soak up as much of it as I could. The girls in the studio were fantastic and always helped me, one in particular, a special friend named Filipa guided me heavily. She would brief me work and then give me constructive feedback, which was invaluable in helping me learn.
Sadly the studio closed in 2013. Although I didn’t feel ready, I decided to give myself six months as a freelance designer to see if I could make it. Thankfully I won some big jobs and worked with some huge clients during that period which gave me the confidence to keep going. The best six months of my life and I have never looked back.
Q: How did you find your style? Has it changed since you started?
A: I spent a long time ‘looking’ for my style, trying to recognize it. I think I first found my style about a year or so into freelancing. I think part of it is about acceptance, you might have an idea about the type of style you like and want to portray but whether or not your natural style is that ‘dream’ style may be another matter. Your style is what naturally pours out of you, the stuff you enjoy working on. My style has certainly changed over the years, as have I as a designer. Experience continuously develops it further, every client I work with teaches me something new.
Q: Your portfolio displays tons of beautiful illustrations for kids apparel, diapers, linens… Is there a product you enjoy creating the most?
A: I love working on it all to be completely honest, Iv been very lucky having the opportunity to work with so many different brands. The latest has been a journey into the children’s book industry. I have been working on some baby/toddler nursery rhyme books and also some baby book boards which has been so much fun!
Q: Could you share your creative process? How do you come up with new ideas?
A: I tend to spend some time on researching my brief, so I will look at pinterest for inspiration, surf the web, visit a few of my favourite blogs or websites and then If I still don’t have a clear idea of what direction of where I want to take it, I might try brainstorming in my notepad.
Q: What advice would you give to your younger self if you could?
A: I would say don’t be scared to follow your dreams! You only have one life (which goes far to quickly for my liking) so don’t waste a second. If you believe something is going to make you happy, GO FOR IT!
I bet you are ready to know more (and check out the amazing artwork!) of Genine... So click here to see more of her wonderful pieces.