Becoming A Wanderer with Miranda Sofroniou June 18 2019
Miranda Sofroniou is an illustrator and surface pattern designer from London, who is currently working and living in Melbourne. Her artwork is full of organic shapes, bright colours and a whimsical celebration of form.
We recently spoke to Miranda about being surrounded by art as a child, travel as a major form of inspiration, and staying active outside of the studio.
Interview by Jessica Steger. Images provided by Miranda Sofroniou.
Can you tell us about your early creative years? Are you from an artistic family? Did you always know that you would become an illustrator or end up doing something creative?
I come from a very creative family. I have always been surrounded by art for as long as I can remember. My dad is an artist and has been a huge influence in my creative style and way of working. He is always painting and drawing.
Since I was a kid, I knew I wanted to do something in the creative field, but I hadn’t really thought about Illustration. I wanted to do more fine art painting, but then I got onto the Bachelor of Artist (Illustration) course at Camberwell College of Arts in London, and realised I was much more suited to Illustration – responding to stories or words with images.
What artist had the biggest impression on your work growing up? And who are some current favourite artists you admire?
Because of my fine art background, I have been brought up with the classic great painters: Matisse, Picasso, Hockney, Cezanne, Renoir. I have such good memories of those artists. There are also so many amazing contemporary artists who I am inspired by, such as Oamul Lu, Kirsten Sims, Charlotte Ager and Beatrice Cerocchi.
What are your favourite types of subjects to illustrate and why?
I love drawing plants and nature, and painting landscapes. I love trying to capture a moment or feeling within my illustrations
Do you keep a visual journal and sketch/paint every day?
Yes! I keep a sketchbook where I jot down all my ideas, and drawings from life. I enjoy flicking back through old sketchbooks as it is sort of like a diary. I can conjure up the emotions and thoughts I was thinking when doing those sketches.
What advice would you give to those aspiring illustrators just starting out? Any golden words of wisdom?
Give your self time, you are not going to be amazing at something over night, keep working on it and practice, practice, practice!
Would you consider trying a different medium – like digital illustration?
I don't really do digital illustration as all my work is handmade – I love the process of painting and drawing, and not looking at a computer!
If you could choose, what would be a dream illustration job for you or project to work on?
I would love to work on more travel-related jobs, to go out and explore and create images from my findings…and be paid for it!
What are some of your favourite places you’ve travelled and that may have inspired your illustrations?
Travel is a huge inspiration on my art. Moving to Australia has given me a new view of life and all the different flora and fauna you find here is incredible. I spent a couple of years living in India when I was a child. It is a place like no other – an explosion to the senses! I would love to go back and do some paintings there.
What other interests do you enjoy doing when not in the studio?
I enjoy being active – running, hiking, cycling, pilates, swimming. I love reading, a good glass of wine and some delicious food.
We are super excited to have you as part of Outré Gallery’s Small Wall exhibition in July. Tell us about what we can expect to see at your show?
The images I have been created are all snapshots of my adventures since moving to Australia. I hope to create a view of my findings which takes you on an adventure through different seasons and landscapes.
Do you have any exciting projects coming up later this year?
I am currently working on my first picture book which I am really excited about!
Thank you for your time, Miranda!
Wanderer by Miranda Sofroniou
5 – 14 July 2019