Featured Artist Q + A with Leo Greenfield

Today we introduce the first of our new Featured Artist series. Every month or so we will bring together a range of product, special blog content and even exhibitions or product collaborations focusing on some of our fave local artists and designers.

We debut the series with Leo Greenfield, a name that has been circulating in the fashion and design realms for a few years.  Best known for his sartorial street fashion illustrations, Leo Greenfield has illustrated the likes of Anna Wintour in Paris, local passers-by down at Fitzroy Woolworths and much in between. Each piece is drawn from memory alone, highlighting his remarkable attention to detail and individual interpretation of those who catch his eye.

1, Leo Greenfield
Leo Greenfield at work. Photo by Clare Pathé, Paris.

Leo has been living and working in London, where he continues his practice of social commentary on contemporary fashion, on and off the catwalk.

He took the time to have a chat with us about his process, inspiration and gives us a few tips on other rising stars we might like to watch.

Can you please introduce yourself and tell us a little about your practice and technique? 

My art practice is primarily about people, social actions and how we move in the public sphere. A major investigation into this element of culture has seen me examine fashion and how we dress via drawing.

I am a studio based artist and love working with physical materials such as paints, pencil and papers. My drawings are always of real people and places I have experienced. All drawings I curate on my blog are draw from memory.

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Autumn Coat, Leo Greenfield.

What inspires you? What is it about your subjects that attracts you attention?

Currently I’m inspired by venturing into new worlds, from my new neighborhood of Hackney in East London, to the endless galleries here in the city. I’m keen to soak up the history of image making and art practice that the great museums offer.

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Rose Street, Leo Greenfield.

How has your practice evolved over time? Have you explored dofferent themes or gone thorugh the process of working on different exhibitions and projects? Please tell us a bit about your history as an artist.

My practices can change with each project, from a book to a film or an exhibition, the work can take on many different forms. But for me drawing is always the starting point, it’s the process I think through.

I’ve loved drawing since a young age but I started using it to document fashion as a teenager when visiting Japan. This led me to studying Art History and then a Bachelor of Fine Art at the Victorian College of the Arts.

During this period I became fascinated with media, from magazines to digital publishing. I wanted to share my work, see the drawings inhabit different platforms and reach different audiences.

I saw the fashion world as an interesting element of visual culture and I began to investigate. Creating works for Vogue magazine gave me further insight into this world, but the runway shows of Paris have always been my favorite source of material.

Melbourne was an incredible base as an artist and gave me the confidence to relocate to Paris and now London. Here in the East End I have set up a studio and building a collaborative team around my work, and we are experimenting with new mediums and stretching the drawings into animations.

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Leopard Print, Leo Greenfield.

Who or what is inspiring you right now? Have you got any hot tips for instagrammers, bloggers or magazines we should be tuning into?

We it comes to media it’s always a wash with me. I really love just exploring book shops…..I jump in and out of Instagram, but like to see what contemporary galleries are posting such as Ditto Press and what artist friends such as Rachel Ang and Sarah McNeil are sharing. The New Yorker is my all time favorite and keeps me company in the studio with pod casts.

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We currently have a sweet series of original pen and ink drawings by Leo Greenfield featuring the colourful characters of our very own Collingwood and Fitzroy! Check out his artist page for details.

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