To kick off our first Meet The Maker of 2019 we've been chatting to artist and dear friend Talia Giles. Here at épanoui we have been stocking Talia's fine art prints since day dot and we know how much you all love her work. Talia's mixture of modern design practice with traditional posed portrait make her pieces very distinctive and striking for any wall that they grace.
Here is a little snapshot of Talia's day to day, what makes her tick and some exciting news about upcoming collections. So grab a cuppa and discover more about this Bedfordshire based maker.
Talia can you offer us a little glimpse into your daily routine?
I’m lucky to work from my home studio and the day starts at 8am with tea, emails and “to do” list. Without the latter I’d be in trouble as I’m a dab hand at organizing other people but not so great at keeping myself in check. Then it’s on to any of the small creative business tasks; website maintenance, social media planning, researching new ideas and business opportunities, wholesale customer visits, admin, accounts & creating artwork. Having recently got a puppy, I’ve had to be a lot more structured with my day as 12.30 means 2 hours of walk & play
with the little guy. Around 4, I pack up any orders for the day and
head down to the post office. I find I’m most productive in the early mornings and late evenings, so most of the best artwork creation happens then. You’ll often find me up in the studio fully in the zone after 10pm in to the early hours.
What made you start your creative business?
Funnily enough this wasn’t my first punt at running a business. My husband and I started a catering company in the French Alps in 2014 and once you get a taste for being self-employed and doing things on your own terms, you don’t want to look back. Following a bad elbow break, I spent my days learning to create art digitally as I couldn’t use my right hand properly. When we decided to move back to the UK, I knew I wanted to make artwork for a living. I had used animals as subject matter to hone my digital skills and fell in love with the process of building the forms up from scratch and applying colour. I’m still obsessed with colour having studied painting at art school. I started to get a few images together and épanoui’s own Hannah suggested I got them printed professionally. They went on sale at the end of 2016, sold out right away and the rest is history! It’s been a labour of love (and anxiety at times) but the battle can only be won by pushing yourself forward, even when you feel like you’re standing still. That warm fuzzy feeling you get when you ship a print order off across the planet never gets old.
Do you have any exciting projects in the pipeline?
Always! But they’re taking their time to surface. Got two new print collections on the go which will see animals outside of the British Isles for once. Miniatures, some minimal editions and some homeware. Oh, and a website relaunch! You don’t get to know what order it’s all coming in though – got to keep an element of suspense.
The latter half of 2018 was a real struggle for me with a lot going on outside of work and its taken its toll on the business. It’s been extremely challenging learning not to be too hard on myself in order to move on. Sometimes you need to just take a breath and regroup. I’m feeling pretty pumped now though, so watch this space!
Now for a few quick fire questions!
Happiness is…dog walks in the fresh air with my husband Andrew followed
by a pint in the pub by the fire.
The song to get me on the dance floor is…Brown Sugar by The Rolling Stones
My dream dinner guests would be (dead or alive)…David Attenborough, Sandi Toksvig, Joni Mitchell, David Hockney & Louis Theroux (because I fancy him and I want to find out how he keeps his face so dead pan).
I’d be lost without…my Macbook and BBC6 music
If I could tell my younger self one thing it would be… don’t compare yourself to others, believe in yourself and keep drawing.