Artist Collaboration: Darcie Olley

Spotlight on our new dog park print created by artist Darcie Olley for our Fall 2022 Collection. We asked Darcie about her creative process, what inspires her and more. Get to know more about her and read the full Q&A below!
Darcie Olley is a British illustrator and designer, whose work is full of joy, fun and charm. She uses a mixture of media including gouache, acrylic, pencil and digital techniques, to create vibrant and quirky outcomes. She is inspired by her huge love for animals, nature, flowers, travel, music and film.
1. Where did you grow up / Where do you live now? I grew up in an old town called Colchester, in Essex, England. I spent time living in the North of England, in Manchester and Stratford-upon-Avon, but I missed being near my family, so returned back to my hometown last year.
2. How long have you been painting? I’ve been doodling and creating pictures from a very young age. I recently uploaded a reel to my Instagram comparing my childhood drawings to my art today, it was fun to look back! After finishing school and feeling lost, I began taking painting seriously. I went back to college to study art, something which I had always loved, but overlooked as a career path.
3. How did you know you wanted to be an artist? I did a degree in Fashion and Textiles and worked in the textiles industry for a year, which left my head full to the brim of my own ideas. I knew the only way I’d truly be able to realize them, was to take the leap and go it alone as an artist.
4. How would you describe your personal style? Simple, comfortable and versatile. I generally stick to a trusted color palette of neutral tones, however when a print is unbelievably gorgeous and irresistible, I must have it in my wardrobe!
5. How does your personal style affect your work?  This is reflected in my work in the sense that I tend to use pops of pretty colors that stand out against understated, neutral tones.
6. Describe your most memorable moment as an artist so far? Probably being selected by legendary fashion designer Paul Smith, as the winner of the Nicole Abbott Award. It was right at the beginning of my career and I’ve had lots more memorable moments since then, but his valuable advice and belief in my work really helped build my confidence.
7. What has been your biggest struggle as an artist so far? Keeping a good work/life balance has been a struggle at times, as most self-employed people will probably relate to, switching your brain off at night and not overthinking absolutely everything can be quite tricky!
8. What were your thoughts when PC reached out to collaborate on this adorable dog print? I was completely thrilled! I believe that this print is a perfect fit for the bright and beautiful Pink Chicken world!
9. Have you ever seen your prints on clothing before? I’ve collaborated with a few children's clothing brands in the past, and seeing my illustrations come to life in this way never gets old.
10. Any sneak peeks or hints on any upcoming works? Alongside continuously working on lots of lovely customer portraits and smaller projects, I’m currently focusing my attention on building up my children’s book illustration portfolio.
Shop Darcie's Dog Park print and the rest of the Fall Collection here.
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