In the past, you’ve compared being color blind to having “dyslexia with colors”. Can you elaborate a bit on that, and how you perceive color when it comes to your work?
I always find I describe color as something secondary to the arrangement. Not to dismiss it, but I definitely find I concentrate on texture and the form of the materials before addressing the color. Shapes are just more interesting to my eye than color.
Color-blindness comes in many forms, most commonly passed from a color-blind man through his non color-blind daughter to her now color-blind son. A way I like to describe it is that the colors are on a line – at one end you have red, green and brown, and these could all interchange as each other. At the other end a similar situation occurs with blue, pink and purple. This leaves yellow and orange tidy in the middle for me to see separately. This is why you’ll see a lot of orange and high contrast colors coming through the work as, for my eyes, that makes a lot of sense visually.
Because of your color blindness, you’ve mentioned that you take a more sculptural approach to florals rather than being guided by hue. What textures and shapes tend to capture your imagination?
In my eyes, each of my compositions or arrangements are their own little world. An island in the sea, a cavernous rock formation, a mossy outcrop, mountain ranges, alien terrain or an entire coral reef. I like playing with a narrative story, starting somewhere and your eye ends up somewhere else, doing that by playing with the depth of field and layering of flowers. Influences are not just natural though. Architecture, fashion, and design all play a part in informing shape and texture.