21-year-old Jennifer is originally from Liverpool but is currently in her second year at Leeds College of Art, where she’s studying Visual Communication.
Nutella is her big weakness (‘a spoon is all I need!’) followed closely by cats. ‘Cats make me sneeze a lot, but they always manage to find me, and I can’t resist their little faces! Stumbling into the laughing baby/funny cat/baby animal part of YouTube takes up hours of my time. And it happens a lot…’
I use very traditional medias in my work, such as embroidery, graphite and watercolour and I try to combine those with somewhat contemporary medias such as screen printing and collage. I love the slow process of embroidering and using stitch as it makes for a more revised piece of work and I love the way things can be pieced together to create something wonderful. My practice makes being a restless person a good thing, as sewing for hours on end makes sure my idle hands always have something to do!
What are your inspirations?
Charity shops and warehouses are wonderful places to go for inspiration; the ephemera found in there can be so unusual and quirky. I especially love old photographs, I have a huge collection of them. Its strange to think that they were once a cherished part of someones family album and now they’re strewn about in charity shops and car boots; I don’t know who they are, but I don’t need to because I can imagine their lives and their friends by looking at them! I also have tonnes of old postcards and many have writing on the back, and they were the forefront of my Embroidered Postcards project (the one in the picture was from the 40’s!). I am also inspired by simple shapes and how they can work with traditional mediums. I also get inspired by things going on around me and that I feel strongly about, mainly animals and nature.
What is your favourite piece of work you have produced?
The Embroidered Postcards were my favourite because the entire process was so rewarding, from finding the postcards and reading about the adventures the strangers had had, to responding to the images and creating something new on them with stitch. They work really well as a collection and stand strongly on their own and I loved the fact that people wanted to pick them up to look at the stitching and read the writing on the back. I sold them in the 2012 International Artist’s Book Fair in Leeds and had such a lovely reaction from them. My core aim of the project was to give new life to something that had been rejected and forgotten and making it desirable again. This project opened a gateway for me and I think it was the thing that really kicked off my hoarding of postcards and photographs.
Who is your favourite ‘creative’ in your chosen field?
Lizzie Finn has been a massive inspiration, the way she incorporates shapes with the naive stitched line work is just incredible. The detail and discipline she shows in her stitching works wonderfully with the sketchy nature of some of her work. I also really enjoy Sandra Dieckmaan’s beautiful illustrations, I could stare at her work forever there is that much detail in it! I am inspired by the way she suggests texture and shadow with multiple lines and shapes.
All images © Jennifer Hill. To view the images in clearer detail, click on them.