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Posted 12.06.19

DEGREE SHOWS - Interior prints influenced by the human body

By Kat Peberdy

BA (Hons) Printed Textile Design & Surface Pattern student Ruby Francis returned from an internship with Zandra Rhodes to create a unique and liberating collection of prints suitable for home interiors, influenced by the nude human form and the Abstract Expressionism movement.

Highlighting her passion for drawing and strength in spontaneous and fluid movements with a range of tools, Ruby has focused on techniques that explore a connection to the movement where the likes of Jackson Pollock celebrated the spontaneous and ‘in the moment’ ability to create motion within the work. The 'Body Language' collection is made up of a series of techniques and processes both hand-rendered and digital, with the intention of celebrating the human form in all shapes and sizes.

We caught up with Ruby, and she explained her processes and influences:

"The collection shows a harmonious connection to the customer's lifestyle and character. The prints have been generated by a catalyst of ideas derived by my affection for life drawing and perceiving the nude body in its most pure form throughout my journey in creative education.

"I have taken life drawing classes since my final year of secondary school, all through college also. Reconnecting with my passion for life drawing has been achievable thanks to the weekly sessions run by a local art gallery in Plymouth, the White Lane Gallery.

"My design inspiration focuses on the purity and harsh realities around self-acceptance in society. I've spent a lot of time researching the historical birth of life drawing during the Renaissance era and its relation to modern day events and attitudes that give us an outlet to express confidence and self-love for our own bodies.

"My internship experience last year with Zandra Rhodes has played a fundamental role in my growth as a designer and my abilities to confidently experiment with new and innovative design ideas, the experience in their studios shaped me both professionally and creatively.

Ruby explored all of the facilities available to her at the college too, the results of which can be seen in her final collection on display during this year's Degree Shows.

"I experimented with disperse dyes, and painting straight into sheets of paper spontaneously with different tools, once dry I was able to heat press the designs straight onto my chosen fabric. Some examples of the hand-rendered techniques I used during my final project included painting directly onto a blank screen and printing my design onto fabric using manutex." 

Follow Ruby on Instagram @francis_prints, to see her latest designs and find out what's next after graduation.