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Greetings & Stationery

Mudmagpie hits the card scene By Charlotte Cowell

We’re always on the lookout for interesting new publishers entering the greeting card market and in the past few weeks our fancy was tickled by the superbly named Mudmagpie, the brainchild of artist Lucy Spence. Describing herself as a

‘Greeting Card fanatic’, Liverpool-based Lucy has been publishing cards since November 2014, after leaving a previous job as a technical writer. She studied Graphic Design at Leeds College of Art before attending Kingston University to study illustration and animation. Experience gained as a freelance illustrator helped her take the decision to move full-time into the vibrant world of greetings cards. Since then, “I've not looked back,” says Lucy, “it's been the best decision I have ever made. “I've had so many positive comments about my

work. I recently had a customer write to me telling me how she had bought one of my cards with a painting of a rabbit on the front for her niece, and that her niece was so taken by the design she had walked around clutching it all day. She told me her mother was planning on framing the card for her wall. That really touched me”. Lucy describes the Mudmagpie illustrative style

as “quirky” and design-led, with a “slightly comical edge characterised by humorous illustrations and typography.” While many of her designs clearly fall

20 Giftware Review & Home Interiors May / June 2015

into the contemporary humour card category, a series of beautifully artistic greetings are also available, ranging from exquisite watercolour animal portraits on unusual backgrounds such as old newspaper reproductions, to more traditional art works. Graphic designs focused on bold typographic imagery, word-puns and phrases also form part of this interesting range. “I love working with typography,”

says Lucy of her distinctive greetings that are right on trend, “as these are the cards which usually most catch my eye when I am out browsing the market. I love how inventive you can be with lettering.”

Speaking of her inspiration as a designer, Lucy

adds: “I have always been inspired by original greetings cards and have been making and sending my own to friends and family ever since I went to my first birthday party as a child. I love how experimental you can be with greetings card art, and how cards are directly part of the gift-giving industry. The idea that my cards are seen by people on the most special days of their lives really inspires me to keep working on fresh, exciting designs. My mission: to make people smile.” Lucy also admits to “a bit of an obsession” with

feathers, which feature strongly in her more classic artworks. On the pressures of succeeding as a relatively

Greetings show

Progressive Greetings Live opens at London’s Business Design Centre June 2-3 offering more than 250 greetings exhibitors. Don’t miss it. Full details on Page 6.

young artist in a highly competitive industry, she muses: “Getting noticed as a greetings card designer can be really tricky in such a competitive industry. I think exposure is one of the main problems for new designers, especially when they take their first steps into the greetings card market. I have been especially challenged trying to get greater online exposure - with so many avenues to consider with regards to marketing. It has been a steep learning curve for me and I am still learning every day. But hey, I love a challenge.” “In the future I hope to expand my card range to

prints and other giftware. I am currently in discussion with a close friend about making steps to open a new giftware store, supporting up-and- coming designers as they make their first steps into the retail world, under the trade name EDGYSKETCH.

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