Portfolio: Ciara Phelan

Illustrator and designer from East London, UK

As well as being a contributer to Digital Arts, Ciara Phelan is an illustrator and designer based in East London, who tells us that she loves to mix vintage imagery and digital vector with analogue texture to create contemporary collages that are playful and vibrant. She shared her portfolio with us and gave us an insight in to her creative process.

Where did you train and what did you specialise in?

I studied Graphic Design at Brighton University.

What techniques and approaches do you use most?

I like to mix both craft and digital. I like the unexpected results you get when working in an analogue way but I love the flexibility of working digitally. I mainly work with Photoshop and Illustrator.

In general, I spend a lot of time sourcing imagery to use in my collages. I then put these onto the computer to manipulate and compose and illustration.

What's your favourite piece you've created and why?

One of my favourite pieces is called Window to the Wild and it was made by creating a composition of flowers and type in Photoshop, then printing it out and assembling it in layers and photographing the result. I really enjoyed making this piece because it was a complete mix of digital and analogue, which creates something quite unusual.

Which clients have you worked for?

Some of my biggest clients are V&A, Orange, Sony, The Guardian, Toyota, New York Times and Royal Mail.

Where have you exhibited your work?

London, Beijing, Korea, New York and Paris.

Who and what are your biggest influences?

Most of my ideas come from walking around The British Museum. I love exploring new themes and techniques and then applying them to my work.

What has inspired you most recently?

The Pop Art Design exhibition at the Barbican.

What are you working on now?

I am currently working on a range of textile patterns inspired by tropical flowers and birds.

What's your dream commission?

To create a window display for Selfridges.

An illustration from Ciara's Greek Goddesses project, which explores her interest in greek mythology and fashion illustration.

Ciara's Window to the Wild illustration was created for Lost In London Magazine's Chelsea Fringe event.

An illustration created for home style and property magazine Heaver.

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Ciara's illustration for Universal's Secret 7" event.

Ciara's A2 poster design for London Transport Museum's annual competition.

Bird Head -part of a series of self-initiated collages inspired by cameo brooches and all things botanical.

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