“I lived in London for a decade in my previous life as a lawyer, and I loved it’s green spaces. I missed the countryside so much, and London’s wonderful parks gave me an important contact with nature, and a way of mapping the changing seasons. Not just its parks – so many London streets are lined with trees. I was thinking about all the different kinds of trees in London, and chose ‘Leafy’ as my word.”
“For each letter I found a tree that’s common in urban areas and began with the initials of the word ‘LEAFY’. So we have Lime, Elder, Ash, Field Maple and Yew.”
“My work always starts with drawing and sketchbook work; I then do a final drawing and use a scalpel to cut out the details; the last step is handpainting each piece with gouache paint, which has a lovely natural matte quality.”
Morpeth is an artist living and working in the heart of Northumberland. She makes artist’s books and works in cut paper, ranging from unique constructed books to limited and unlimited editions and multiples and wall-hung pieces. Her work combines a range of processes, including stitching, bookbinding, hand painting, printing and hand and machine cutting.
“My starting point is always some text – the inspiration for many of my pieces comes from a 1945 film called ‘I Know Where I’m Going’ (Powell & Pressburger). The film script, characters, cinematography and film structure influence my work – bits of the script trickle into my pieces, snippets of dialogue, forming and reforming, taking on new meanings and telling different stories. I also use half-remembered lines of songs and poems, so that text forms an integral part of many of my pieces, shaping their form in the process.”
“I work in a studio in the midst of the countryside, and draw inspiration from the natural world that surrounds me. I take commissions, and can incorporate favourite text, snippets of poetry or songs in client work as well as my trademark plant and animal imagery. For more about my work, see sarahmorpeth.com. Twitter : @skiptotheend
‘Leafy’ by Sarah Morpeth will be displayed at Type Tasting with the London Design Festival 2013 at the V&A.
Drop in workshops: 10am – 5pm, 14 & 15 September 2013’London Design Festival Hub
Design Studio, Sackler Centre
London SW7 2RL