Artist Interview - Mia Hague

My home studio is full of light, and although it’s at the front of the house on a terraced street, it’s wonderfully quiet. It’s got wooden floors and a fireplace and has shelves loaded with boxes, paper and books. There are pictures hanging everywhere, framed old photographs of my ancestors and women from the past whom I find inspirational. One of my favorites is a group of women spitfire pilots in front of a plane from WW2. Many maps, maps everywhere. I have a wonderful antique tool cabinet which holds all my cards and two old wooden desks. The desks are always messy and mainly full of coffee mugs but I know where everything is.

I grew up in beautiful Wales, and then spent the other half of my life mainly in the North West of England. Not sure where I’ll move to next! Travel makes me feel free so I try to do at least one big trip a year, with little ones in between. Some planned, some spontaneous.

My day always starts with either a run or a swim. Essential I feel in the life of a self employed artist, it gives you energy and ideas! Then music goes on (usually something folk - like) and a pot of coffee gets made. Then it’s whatever is on the agenda, anything from emailing, sending samples, packing cards, creating new designs (my favorite), commissions or sorting and organizing something.

I studied illustration at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, and after graduating at 22, went straight into the service industry as I really enjoyed the social part of the work. It wasn’t until the ripe age of 29 that I finally picked up a pencil and started to be creative again. I’m 32 now so I’ve technically not been in the game very long!

My biggest success must be having my cards sold all over the world, and being able to quit my day job, something I’d always imagined might happen one day. It’s amazing what can happen if you believe it will, and work hard at it.

I’m inspired mostly by humans. How we behave and what we say and do. I like to use other creatures to personify us, and animals are fun to draw. I also like to bring to life the personalities our animals have. Combining my love for animals with my obsession with old books, paper ephemera, photographs, maps, and my need to constantly be recycling, I think makes for a good-looking greeting card.

I’ve been making art, I’ve been told, since I could hold things. A few of my earliest memories are of drawing the characters from my story books.

My favorite medium is collage, using traditional methods, and as little computer work as possible, making room for happy mistakes.

Over the last couple of years my style has got a little more technical. My characters are becoming more realistic and the collages as a whole have more depth.

My favorite design licensed by Calypso is the one with the traveling wolves. It gives me the sense of adventure, what life is.

Click here to see Mia Hague's entire collection!