You might remember back in my Happy New Year blog post I was rather excited to be going through to the second round of the application for a proposal? I was put forward to be considered as a local artist to be commissioned to develop products for the forthcoming King Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester and I was selected to go in front of the panel to show my work and make a bid for this opportunity!
The opportunity was advertised by Creative Leicestershire back in December and when I saw it I felt strongly that it was the type of project that my handwriting would be good for as I have previously designed prints for Harrods which sell over a variety of their own brand souvenir gifts. I was also really excited about the discovery of the King’s remains in the city where I live and grew up and felt it would be a chance to work with the museums that gave me so much inspiration over the years. I even got married to my husband Guy in the Guildhall museum in Leicester, which is only a stones throw away from where the remains where found and the now site of the new visitor centre! How exciting!
So my initial pitch was to include a rather gothic style illustration that I hand drew and scanned into the computer which could then be printed onto bags, note books and postcards. I feel that my target demographic for my illustrative type of work is quite young so I focused on something fashion related to target all the school kids on trips to the centre.
But although the panel liked my work and my drawing style they felt they wanted something that would reach a wider demographic. SO I was commissioned to create a design that incorporated many of the historical buildings around Leicester city and country so it would connect the various attractions together demonstrating the ‘rich’ heritage connections we have locally! I really enjoyed doing the piece as being able to include beautiful country parks as Bradgate Park are very close to my heart as I grew up here and visit them all the time, in fact Abbey Park is a large park in the city and when I was a baby we lived right near to and my Mum used to push me round there nearly every day!
So here is my final design! Which after only a few months development working closely with the museums and galleries development team at the Leicester City Council my Leicester design has been published onto a small range of souvenir items available to purchase from the visitor centre.
I had a lovely morning today looking round the centre and also got to meet the other local artist Victoria Whitlam who is an established textile artist and has been successfully published and has exhibited many times.
The King Richard III Visitor Centre is an amazing place. The theme of which is ‘Death, Dynasty and Discovery’ and your journey around the exhibition gives you an insight into the rise and reign of the King onto the battle and his death and then lots of information about the dig and the science behind the discovery!
Well worth a visit, and it’s a beautiful site just to pop in for a coffee and maybe purchase a lovely mug to have it in! 😉
I really would love to work with other museums and places of historical heritage and dream of working for places such as Chatsworth House, the Victoria and Albert Museum or even Buckingham Palace one day!