It’s Meet The Maker. Our newly revamped feature where we speak to the artists behind your favourite prints and design goodies. What they studied, what they love about what they do, their favourite coffee spots and much more.
As The Degree Shows come to a close and all the new graduates spread their wings (and hopefully pass by with some cool new artwork for us 😄 ). We thought we’d check in with another one of your Edinburgh Alumni Favourites. It’s none other than, the Pun Master herself, Helen of Mister Peebles. A chuckle can always be heard from our card section or when customers are flicking through our browsers, and they come across a Mr Peebles classic.
We’ve worked with Helen for a number of years and we’re big fans of her pun-tactic prints and cards. We’re lucky to have had Helen in our tiny windows working her magic back in October 2017. She created a Spectacular Halloween Window.
Paw us a tea and let’s meet Helen and her menagerie of quirky animals.
What Do You Love Most About What You Do?
I love drawing colours and textures, especially fur and fabric. Building up layers of paint and pencil until it looks like it has depth is really lovely. I also love mixing paints and playing with colour combinations.
Where Did You Study And Why?
I was lucky to study at Edinburgh College of Art. I looked at a few places but I just fell in love with Edinburgh and the college straight away. I studied Costume Design which was hard work but amazing. The course at ECA was really varied and I learned lots of different things, including plenty of drawing.
Where Do You Base Yourself & Why?
I’m based in east London. I moved to Tasmania after leaving Art School and when my visa was up I moved to London as my best pal was here. I worked on some costume jobs and in a chocolate shop for a while. Then I started Mister Peebles in my spare time. London’s a hectic place to live but there is an amazing creative community and lots of markets and events for independent makers. That’s helped me grow my business over the last few years.
What Do You Like To Do When Escaping Work? Where’s Your Favourite Coffee Spot?
I love to get a balance between going out and staying in. I really enjoy cooking and hanging out at home but also getting out to exhibitions and walking round the city. I think there are so many ideas that appear when you’re wandering about.
My favourite coffee spot is a little cafe near my flat called Familia in Forest Gate, it’s tiny with a little garden and they make amazing food too. https://www.instagram.com/familiacafe/
Here’s a wee blast from the past. The Mr Peebles 2016 Calendar. We couldn’t keep these guys on the shelves, if we remember correctly. Eeeep!!! There might be another in the works! How exciting. 😆
I’d say to keep working because sometimes it seems like nothing is going anywhere but you never know what’s round the corner. I might also say to take more risks as I can be a bit cautious. Probably better to leap sometimes and see what happens!
Who’s Your Favourite Artist at The Red Door and what would be your Top Purchase?
That’s a really tough choice! I think the Red Door is such a treasure trove of amazing things. I do love Tom Pigeon’s work and any of their prints would be on my list.
We’d like to thank Helen for taking the time to let us get to know her a little bit more. Keep your eyes peeled across our social media for more Edinburgh College of Art Alumni this week.