Looking back, I seem to have done quite a few floral designs so far this year. While it’s true that they often have geometric elements to them, it is still unusual for me to design florals. So here is another floral design!

The challenge from Anchobee was to create a design based on magnolias. And, coincidentally, there was a Tigerprint competition to design floral gift wrap. So I decided to join the challenges together.

A few years ago we stayed in Shalford in Essex. The garden opposite our cottage had a lovely white flowering bush that I photographed. It wasn’t until earlier this year I discovered that it was a type of magnolia. I thought all magnolias were huge trees with majestic goblet-shaped flowers, nothing like my photograph:

Magnolias in Shalford

My first influence was the paper cut-outs of Matisse. I have been doing a course on paper (thank you Majo) which included collage, and would love to see the exhibition at Tate Modern.  But for now I am just enjoying looking at the exhibition book. Inspired by this I created looser cut-out flower shapes to work with rather than accurate realistic flower shapes.

The next influence was spring/summer 2015 trends, as the Tigerprint competition had to reference these.  One of the trends identified by Stylesight for this season is ‘Impulse’ – quite graphic, retro, sugary, pop art, California style. Looking at some of the images I remembered seeing prints of David Hockney’s that were stylised flowers. Hockney (and other pop artists) also used a lot of collage, and so my ideas started to crystallise.

This final piece is actually a 150mm x 150mm block repeat tile, although a larger repeated area is shown here.


Unfortunately this story has a sad ending. I actually created three designs for this Tigerprint competition, but was unable to upload them due to a problem with the website. Although sad at that, I am really pleased with the outcomes and with the the new techniques that I learnt from the exercise.