Mixed Media Textiles Designer Nina Willsher

Nina Willsher is a mixed media textiles designer who has just completed her studies at De Montfort University and exhibiting her work at New Designers 2014.

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‘I have been studying for Textiles 9 years, all the way through GCSE, A Level, Art & Design Foundation and I have just completed my Undergraduate Degree in Textile Design at De Montfort University. Taking the jump to University has been the best thing I have ever done, enabling my work, confidence, style and personality to flourish.

My design experience and at De Montfort has lead to a number of successes. Last summer, I was a finalist within the 5th Annual Student Wallpaper competition. The coverage I received from the finalist position was overwhelming, I was awarded with a place within 2 London exhibitions, firstly at the IMAGO Gallery, Mayfair, London as well as exhibiting my work at the London Design Festival at The Sanderson Hotel, London. In addition, my design was also selected for an international wallpaper exhibition at The Danish Academy of Fine Art, Copenhagen, Denmark as well as displayed at the prestigious interior trade show Heimtexil, Frankfurt, Germany this January, by representation of Surface Design Ltd. I have also held two finalist positions within 2 international Society of Dyers & Colourists trend prediction competitions.’

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‘My influences come from a mixture of places, such as, secondary research into fashion and interior textiles and Pinterest, I am an obsessive pinner, to primary hands on research. I am particularly influenced by architecture, nature, movement and developing my own concepts. My creative process develops through photography, drawing and painting to then developing digitally in Photoshop. I love the combination of hand and technology, the possibilities are endless.

Influences for my final graduate collection ‘PARADOX’ came from a variety of sources, including a visit to Kew Gardens and the Natural History Museum to view their crystal and mineral collection. The florals viewed at Kew Gardens captured the typical depiction of beauty, however, I intended to look at the iconic symbol of delicacy and elegance from a different angle. Instead I investigated into the harmful, destructive side of botanics, such as poisonous toxicology and natural protections, which could cause hallucinogenic qualities. Hallucinogenic effects, illusions and fantastical delusions further inspired manipulated imagery, prints, techniques and vivid colour palette. The designs in the PARADOX collection are built up by a combination of sourced fabrics, leathers, metallic and digitally printed materials aimed towards a contemporary, luxury interiors market. Adorned with an eclectic and diverse mix of multi media techniques, such as, Irish embroidery, pleating leather, vinyls and flocks. It’s the varied surface qualities and modern twist on traditional techniques that give PARADOX its individuality and distinctiveness.’

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‘I am incredibly grateful for the host of success my final collection has already brought me. As well as the opportunity to exhibit at New Designers next week, I have also been awarded The Worshipful Company of Dyers Award and The Worshipful Leather Sellers Award, a shortlisted position for The Christopherson Collection, an interview selection for Texprint 2014 as well as a shortlisted position for the CAMAC 6th Annual Student Wallpaper Competition once again. I am currently looking for a Textile Designer position within a design studio.’

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Website | @NinaWillsher | Facebook