Heather Cheung

I’ve just returned from New Designers (Week One) at the Design Business Centre in London where I had the opportunity to exhibit my graduate collection and get an insight into the work of my fellow 2013 design graduates from around the UK. My next few articles here at Pinso will place focus on the graduate talent I’ve spotted at New Designers and who I see at “one to watch”.

Heather JY Cheung
Out of the entire exhibition, my favourite body of work and stand presentation came from Scottish textile and print designer Heather JY Cheung. Heather is a graduate of Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland where she studied on the Design for Textiles course. In a similar way to her contemporary Scottish designers, such as Johanna Basford and Alastair McAuley and Paul Simmons of Timorous Beasties her starting point is hand-drawn ink illustrations depicting nature and animalia. Heather uses intensely detailed and predominantly monochromatic illustrations to create designs that are macabre in subject yet still aesthetical and complex in composition yet versatile and all the while, easily marketable with exhibited products including silk scarves, ceramics, wallpaper and interior surfaces.

Heather JY Cheung

Heather’s work defies the standards and breaks boundaries. Whereas the norm for selling point within surface pattern design is to follow usual trends such as birds, butterflies and flowers, Heathers subject focuses on darker creatures we’d not so instantly associate with being marketable, such as bears, deers and wolves and combines these with intricate hand-penned leaves, vines, branches and botanics which have somewhat of a celtic feel with countless twists and turns and knots which disguise and camouflage the beast-like creatures. With the bear illustration below, you can see that from a distance, the face and surrounding branches could easily be misinterpreted for a rose bud.

Heather JY Cheung

Heather’s textile designs for fashion alter only slightly from her interior and home based products, with the delicate addition of a little colour. Garments and scarves still contain the complexity of the original illustrations with mainly navy and blue colourings and make use of the current ombre trend within fashion and beauty, as exhibited below.

Heather JY Cheung

You can find out more about Heather through her online website here. If you are interested in any designs or products don’t hesitate to get in touch with Heather. You can contact her through her website.

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