Caroline McAleer – is a graphic designer from Westport, Co. Mayo, Ireland whose work can be described as a photographic collage with graphic elements and typography. The environment she lives in as well as the repetitive systematics of nature influence Caroline’s art .
“The work represents this idea of pattern while incorporating aspects of shape, line and type. It is a love of nature combined with a love of colour and graphic design. All photos used are my own and all finished pieces are my own”, – Caroline says.
Being an artist – is it your profession or a hobby?
I’m a graphic designer and produce creative work as a hobby. It’s an important process of expression for me. It is also a habit that I try to maintain. If I have an idea I like to try and develop it and experiment with different possible outcomes or solutions.
What is your creative process? Do you have specific rituals or habits?
The process usually starts by taking a collection of my photographs and then consider pattern, shape and colour. There will be a rough initial idea which will develop as I look over the images and work out different compositions.
Another ritual I do is write down words that relate to an idea that I may have, I’ll write down similar words, write them out in different ways, again looking at shape, pattern and repetition.
What are you struggles as an artist and how do you handle THEM?
There is always self-doubt so trusting yourself can be a struggle, this can work as an aid to push your work or can completely halt it. You can’t take yourself too seriously if you have something to say, find a way to say it. It’s always difficult to dedicate time to creative work as it doesn’t fit within a structured timescale and you can sit with an idea for however long it takes!
Do you use other media or ways to express yourself?
I like to sketch up ideas and compositions. If I see particular colors or color combinations, I’ll take note or take a picture. The same if I see words/type presented in a particular way that takes my attention.
If I have an idea I like to try and develop it and experiment with different possible outcomes or solutions.
You use a lot of bright colors, do they represent something special or you pick them intuitively?
Right now, I love bright colors. Sometimes I will have color combinations in mind that I build into a piece and other times it will intuitively develop. It’s a balance between your own feeling and the feeling of the piece.
What IS YOUR ADVICE to someone who is interested in photographic collage OR typography?
For me, it is important to have an idea of what I want to put together and how I am going to do it. Then allow it to develop and change as the work progresses, to be available to new details that show themselves to you. I believe it is important to have an idea or something to say but not to stick too rigidly to it.
Follow Caroline on Instagram at @caromcaleer