Last April, four artists were approached to design four special edition Art & Sole covers along with four Cortez Sneakers. The brief was simple; ‘History of running’, and each artist was assigned a colour to work with, correlating to the category signifying contents dots in the Art & Sole book.
We caught up with one of the chosen artists, Rose Stallard, to find out more about her time working on this project and the inspiration behind her particular pair of Cortez (pictured above).
Don’t forget to check out our recap of the launch event for this project here.
Obviously you were given blue as your base colour, what was your inspiration then onwards from that?
Well I knew I was being given the colour blue to work with and I knew what my brief was, it was to celebrate 40 years of the Cortez trainers from Nike. So I suppose what I decided to do was pick out certain things and then build up a clip art sheet, so I had loads of images I could work with, so when I came to working on the trainers I could go “Yeah I want that, I want this, I want that”. That was probably where I was coming from.
Looking at your previous client list, you seem to have quite a varied selection. Is there anything in particular that you aim towards?
I suppose it’s just really nice to be working on really interesting and exciting projects, especially ones that take you away from working in front of a computer, so it all brings it back to basics really. Kind of how you sort of start off; just making art and making it into a real thing as opposed to this digital online thing floating around in cyberspace.
So is that how you prefer to work then, you’ll sit down with pen and paper and just jot your ideas down?
Well I always hand draw everything, and then it ends up getting fed into the computer through the scanner and I just rework it in photoshop and it comes back out again and normally it then goes into a screen print, or something like this. So it changes again through the stages and each stage it’s different.
Is there anything you can tell us about the process behind the shoe?
Well I got given my shoe and it’s nylon, so I think it was all about just deciding what I could use on it, what would work the best. So I just went out and bought loads of pens because I just like going to the graphics shops and buying loads of things, so I was like “Oh wicked, that’s my que” and then it was obviously just figuring out how to get the best image, because you had to get it right first time. I was a bit nervous about getting it right.
So the shoe we see is the one and only original?
Yeah, and if I was to produce another it would probably look completely different to that. So that’s why I had my sheet of clip art and would sit and be like “Yeah I want that, I want that….”
How long would you say it took to work out the design for it?
Well it probably took a while to decide what images I wanted, but as soon as I had that clip art, my Cortez clip art, then it was just a matter of sitting down and getting on with it. It was a real fun project to work on and it sort of reminded me of doing school bags, where you’d paint on your favourite bands, it was a bit like that!
Have you worked with trainers before?
No. Well, this is the first time I’ve drawn directly onto trainers, so yeah that was my first go.
And lastly would you do it again?
Yeah I definitely think so!
Photography: James Clothier