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Unveiling Whimsical Worlds: An Interview with Illustrator Georgia Camden

Updated: Apr 2

Want to know about the illustrator life? If you fancy a peek behind the scenes at the life of an illustrator, then check out my series of interviews with some of my favourite illustrators.


Contents


Today's interview features Georgia Camden, owner of Growing Wilder Studio. I love her whimsical work, which brings a bit of the fantastic into everyday life, (and demonstrates amazing colour theory!). Her work evokes the wilderness, stories and promise of adventure and I for one am totally taken in by the story she tells with her work. So, without further ado, let's get into the interview.


A tiger wades through turquoise waters, seen from above
Tiger Wading by Georgia Camden. Currently available to buy in her Etsy store. Photo Credit Georgia Camden Studio.

1. How did you get into illustration?


I have undertaken quite a few different pathways to reach where I am now. I studied genetics and microbiology, then fine arts specialising in sculpture and my last venture before this was having leather and jewellery collections. I didn’t know which one was right or what to do, all I knew was that being creative was a part of me and integral to my happiness. 


all I knew was that being creative was a part of me and integral to my happiness. 

I’ve always had a dream of illustrating my own children’s book, I really wanted to understand the whole process from layout to production. So In 2016, I decided to study design. Until this point, I had been entirely traditional when creating art but in my second year, on the advice of my dad, I obtained an iPad Pro which completely transformed my artistic practice. I found this new freedom with digital art because you can experiment in form, colour, technique and style at the drop of a hat. I think because of my background in traditional work, I am still drawn to that look so find the act of replicating traditional techniques digitally an exciting task. 


2. How did you develop your style?


Lots and lots of drawing and experimenting! But also analysing art that I love, current artists and those throughout history. Looking at the techniques, textures, colours, compositions and the feeling that they used and convey. I then tried to capture to get a little bit of the essence of each, combine it all into a big pot of inspiration then come up with my own recipe out of it all. 


With style, I am also aware of trying to be consistent. I am naturally quite experimental and like trying new things. So to try and keep consistency in my portfolio, I use my previous pieces that have a direction I am happy with as reference images to help keep my style continuity.


I use Procreate on the iPad and funnily enough use the same brushes as I do traditional mediums. I mainly use gouache and pencils in both!


A photo of Georgia Camden has been blended with her illustration of a monkey in a jungle. The monkey sits around her neck with its hands in her hair.
Illustrator and Artist Georgia Camden. Photo credit @georgiacamden


3. Your Instagram account is just gorgeous (@georgiacamden) and well balanced in both colour, tone and content, do you have any tips for those of us less fortunate in the Instagram department?


Thank you so much, my relationship with Instagram has been a long journey with lots of ups and downs. Early on I think I tried to model my account off other successful Instagrammers that I admired, and I think because it wasn’t honest to who I was it didn’t get much traction.


It wasn’t until I started posting in a way that made me really happy that I started to also connect with my audience more. Combining photography with illustrations to create a story and mood in my feed is part of the way I want to share my art. To create an immersive experience. So I think everyone just needs to work out what kind of experience they want their followers to have, and how they want to document their journey. Then they will connect with the community which is right for them. Once you determine the experience, it’s important to stay consistent with the tones, and colours and if you want to transition a look do it softly. So over winter, I had a lot of dark photos, with dark wood background and a cosy feel, but now it’s getting warmer I am going to transition to a lighter brighter feel. I really love being in tune with the seasons in my feed and connecting people with the outside and nature. I also use the app Preview just to plan out the next few photos (I can’t go too far ahead as most content is created a few days before) but it helps keep my feed consistent.


An illustration of flying golden fish is laid over a photograph of rolling forested hills
Fish and Fields. An Instagram piece combining reality and imagination. Credit to Georgia Camden Studio

4. What inspires you?


My main drive for creating art is because I find it very therapeutic. Nature is where I feel most at peace with myself and the world.


I feel that in nature you can feel momentarily taken away from all the obligations and worries that life can throw upon you. You can just feel life in it’s rawest form without all the complexities that humans impose on it. Life, death and harmony. Everything breathes and has its own life story, and I feel a stronger connection with the past and present in nature. It allows me to stop and appreciate life. 


5. How do you choose your colour palette?


I draw my colour palette from nature as well. I adore all the seasons. But my favourite seasons are spring and autumn, and they are the major influences on my colours as well. They are the seasons of change and new beginnings where there are tingles in the air.  


A polar bear dives for brightly coloured fish through turquoise water
A diving polar bear and brightly coloured fish by Georgia Camden. Available to buy on her Etsy store.

6. What is your favourite thing about being an illustrator?


It’s hard to narrow down one thing, I love the personal side where one gets thrills of creating and new ideas, I feel like it’s solving a puzzle to work out how to represent this feeling/ imagery in a way that does it justice. But I also really love connecting with people and telling stories. I feel stories bring us together as a community, and can help us find a sense of belonging and meaning. 


7. If you could give your past self some advice about illustrating, what would it be?


Don’t stress about finding your style, or decisions you make. Just keep creating and experimenting and those creations will help shape your pathway. 


Try to evolve and adapt as opportunities arise. Don’t compare yourself to others (something I have to remind myself daily!), do what makes you happy and just keep working. These things take time, and building up a business and portfolio won’t happen overnight. Enjoy the process and the enjoy, be open and honest and be yourself. 


Five whale sharks swim through a turquoise sea, their markings look like stars under the water
Serene Whale Shark Art by Georgia Camden. Available to buy in her shop.

Thank you so much for joining us on the blog today Georgia! And if you'd like to have a look at more of her work, check out the links below!



Check out my next interview with artist Betsy Iannarelli, here.


As always, thanks for reading!

Nx


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