The artist in me, no matter how procrastinating that artist is, has been dying to blog about my other love as well as fashion. The question wasn’t in whether I would end up writing about artists and their work, but rather who and how?
I unexpectedly found my answers after having a general scroll through Instagram, where I stumbled upon Australian artist Neva Hosking’s page. I instantly fell in love with her striking prints with all their fine lines and scrupulous attention to detail. And I’m sure you will, too.
[ALL ARTWORK BY NEVA HOSKING]
Neva is originally from Perth, Australia but moved to Sydney to major in print making at the National Art School.
She produces beautiful portraiture prints through etching onto copper plates, but also creates realistic biro pen studies on paper. It’s safe to say, Neva is a massive fan of lines – we can see that through the hatched shading and linear style that is consistent in all of her work. I’m a fan too, as she captures each contour and curve of each face perfectly with her free-looking, but very controlled, hatching.
Neva’s also got a thing for faces. Her printed portraits and illustrative studies often comprise of close-ups which really capture that momentary emotion of the subject. However, Neva has also done several studies of nature creeping its way into the frame and interacting with her models (examples directly above and below).
‘If my heart wasn’t in art, it would be snapped up by something botanical/horticultural’ – Neva Hosking
I love the blending of old and new in a lot of Neva’s work. Hatching is a traditional shading technique, which has been used by the likes of Rembrandt and Da Vinci. Neva’s light use of the technique adds a very classic feel, which offers a great contrast against the fresh-faced, young adults who are often Neva’s subjects.
To think this isn’t even the end of it! Neva sells her prints online, where she’s also been selling zines and her printed tees (see below).
I managed to get in touch with the busy, talented Neva Hosking and ask her a few questions…
What inspired you to turn slightly away from pen/pencil and paper to printmaking with metal plates?
The change was more inspired by there being no option to major in drawing at my school so I thought printmaking would be the closest thing. I love etching because I can recreate the feeling of drawing but also push it a bit further, adding aquatint or soap ground and experimenting a bit, which gives me new ideas and directions when I’m back with a pen and pencil.
Who are your artistic inspirations, or inspirations in general?
My major inspo at the moment is Julie Mehretu, specifically her etchings. They have a beautiful sense of movement and controlled chaos and her lines are amazingly fluid! I find a lot of inspiration at the library, the botanical gardens, public transport and weird 3am mental conversations (which is why I never take my sleeping pills if I need ideas for projects, aha).
What is it about the human face that interests you so much?
I’ve always been drawn to people but I’m not really sure why. Something voyeuristic about it, I suppose. Also, there’s something about creating characters that I enjoy.
What do you seek to capture in your work?
I’m not sure what I intend to capture – I never start a piece with a goal in mind (I think that’s why art school is a struggle for me) but just let it evolve as it goes.
How has your style evolved from when you first started getting into art? Has your subject of interest changed in that time?
The subject matter has really been similar all along, just matured. Technically though, it’s changed a lot! During high school, I had a very basic linear ‘outline-y’ style which slowly built up into a more solid style. Printmaking is having a big impact on my style at the moment, changing mediums is a good way to shake things up and not get too stagnant.
What’s your biggest piece of advice to other budding artists and creatives out there?
From experience, I would say listen to the people around you but don’t change yourself to please them. Make art for yourself above all.
What do you think of Neva Hosking’s work? Let me know!