Born into a family of professional artists in the United Kingdom’s beautiful English countryside, Andrea Nairn’s artistic journey began early on in childhood.
“My artistic journey started very early. I was fortunate enough to be born into a family that were passionate about the arts. My paternal grandmother was a professional artist and as a young child I would spend time drawing and sketching in the English countryside under her supervision.”
Drawn towards the beauty of the natural world and its changing seasons, Andrea focused on sketching the landscapes around her and capturing all the intricate textures, patterns, and colours.
“I became passionate about drawing and I dreamt of attending art college from an early age,” said Andrea. “Supportive parents and the guidance of an inspirational high school art teacher led me to attend Kingston University in the UK where I obtained a degree in graphic design and illustration.”
Since then, Andrea’s artistic journey has led her to work for two major North American design studios and her illustrations have been published in magazines such as Canadian House and Home, Toronto Life, Chatelaine and EnRoute.
More recently, Andrea has focused on designing home décor items – such as coasters and placemats – that draw from her original sketches and watercolours to beautifully showcase unique Canadian landscapes.
“Through my work it is my hope that the observer may be drawn into an experience that the natural world so often provides : a quiet sense of wonder.”
What sparked the idea of creating décor pieces from your art?
In 2011, the desire to push my work in a new direction resulted in a return to art college to study textiles at Sheridan College in Oakville. My style of illustration translated well into the creation of repeat patterns . This became my point of focus. In 2014, I travelled to the USA to receive a First place award for textile print design from the International Textile Market Association.
Encouraged by positive feedback I made the decision to launch a range of bespoke products using my own original drawings. I love the idea of my designs being applied to something of practical use: Cushions are an opportunity to apply bold colour and customize any interior ; The melamine placemats are a practical, sustainably sourced, and decorative product, designed for everyday use. Both high quality, timeless products, with a uniquely Canadian story.
Where do you draw your inspiration to create your pieces?
The natural world and it’s changing seasons has always held a particular fascination for me and offers a constant source of inspiration; Pattern and texture in landscape; the play of light on a frozen river edge, the dance of shadows cast by the silhouette of a winter tree. I’m also fascinated by the history of textiles themselves and draw on the pattern and colours from fabrics of every era. The challenge for me when it comes to designing is always editing my thoughts and following through on an idea. The possibilities are always endless.
I would love to expand my work into joint ventures with textile companies, product and interior designers. I have always enjoyed collaborating. I also want to continue to grow my own brand, adding to my range of high quality products for the home interior.