Clara Cline of The Wild Wander / by Quirk Gallery

 
Tin type of Clara Cline at   Tredegar Ironworks, Richmond, Virginia. 

Tin type of Clara Cline at Tredegar Ironworks, Richmond, Virginia. 

As a preface to this post we would like to thank everyone who signed up for Clara's workshop Brush Lettering A Quirk Workshop! We are officially sold out! We look forward to seeing everyone who signed up for the workshop and hope anyone who was not able to sign up will join us for our next workshop. To stay up to date with announcements of new workshops follow us on our Instagram!

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Quirk Gallery: Can you tell us a little about yourself?

Clara Cline: Sure! My name is Clara, and I'm an illustrator and letterer living here in Richmond. My work is generally pretty focused on natural history, so it ranges from wildlife, to maps, to more ephemeral curiosities that I come across. Outside of work my interests are pretty much the same - I love spending time outdoors, combing through antique stores and museums, and I'm a little bit of a packrat - I can never get enough of old stuff.

Photo by Shannon Pierce

Photo by Shannon Pierce

Quirk Gallery: How did you start doing brush lettering?

Clara Cline: When I first began illustration as a livelihood I started out with a line of greeting cards. Because I was on a shoestring budget and I didn't like any of the fonts I had on my computer, I started lettering the words on the cards as a workaround. I ended up becoming really captivated with the art and science behind lettering, and brush lettering is a particularly unique challenge and in some ways exception to the normal rules of lettering. It's a lot looser, more expressive, and shows more of a personal hand than some of the more traditional forms of lettering. I can get caught up in the structure of letterforms, so practicing brush lettering is a good way to loosen things up and get more creative.

Cline testing various types of lettering and paper 

Cline testing various types of lettering and paper 

Quirk Gallery: Your company, The Wild Wander, features illustrations, printed pieces and has a big emphasis on naturally sustainable materials. How does brush lettering fit in with your company The Wild Wander?

Clara Cline: My work definitely has a nostalgic bent to it, and hand lettering is a huge part of that. When you look at old signage, old advertisements, it was almost always hand-lettered by someone, and it gives a unique characteristic to the letters that you simply don't get with type.

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Quirk Gallery: Prints and towels like Flora and Fauna show you drawing from agriculture and wildlife of Virginia. What are other inspirations for your work?

Clara Cline: I feel very lucky to live in Richmond because there's no end of inspiration around me - from the landscape to the history, it's just a really rich environment. I sometimes feel like I'm a little bit all over the place in where I pull inspiration from, but I think there's some continuity in that it usually stems from a love for antiquity. In Victorian times there was a huge surge of interest in natural history and the sciences, and it became a popular hobby for amateurs to keep little collections of artifacts and catalog phenomena. I think that's probably the most accurate description for what I do - it's grounded in an appreciation for science and history, but curated in a more whimsical way.

A hand-illustrated letterpress chart detailing flora and fauna native to the Great State of Virginia.

A hand-illustrated letterpress chart detailing flora and fauna native to the Great State of Virginia.

Quirk Gallery: What is next for you and your business?

Clara Cline: I have a one year old daughter so that's definitely changed things quite a bit for my work! I'm still in the process of learning how to work with a toddler, but in many ways the lack of time has given me more focus and direction with my work. I've started to return to more detailed paintings and illustrations, which I haven't done in a long time, and I've been working on a series of sort of Audubon-inspired watercolor birds. I'm always looking to stay inspired and keep adding to my body of work, and hoping everything else follows.

 
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An original illustration of a  cardinal perched on a dogwood branch.

An original illustration of a cardinal perched on a dogwood branch.

Thanks to everyone who signed up for Clara's workshop Brush Lettering A Quirk Workshop! We are officially sold out!

*We do not offer a wait list for sold out workshops, but keep checking in for our future workshops and sign up for our newsletter and make sure to follow us on instagram to learn about everything new at Quirk!*

We are so pleased to welcome back Clara Cline for Brush Lettering: A Quirk Workshop! Join Clara Saturday, November 18th from 2 PM - 4 PM for her second brush lettering workshop with us. In this workshop Clara will go through the fundamentals of creating great lettering and teach tips and tricks for working with brushes. From Clara's Instagram The Wild Wander: I don't post quite as much lettering content on here anymore, but it's still very much the bread & butter of my work, and a subject I'm excessively enthusiastic about, so I'm very excited to be teaming up with Quirk Gallery to host a workshop next month on the fanciful, emotional, and personal world of brush lettering. No experience is necessary, and it's a great opportunity to brush up (SORRY) on lettering possibilities before the holidays - think place cards, gifts, holiday cards, and more. Materials will be provided, there are a limited number of seats so I can get plenty of one on one time with each participant. I hope you'll join us!

 
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