An Edmonton-based illustrator, who’s also an occasional photographer and filmmaker, Stephanie Simpson creates bright, simple illustrations inspired by Alberta. Her work features images that could be imagined in national parks, city landmarks, and local plants and animals. Catch her at the Bison both weekends, follow her on Instagram (@stephanie.illustrates) to see more of her playful and beautiful illos and read on to discover what inspires her art!
Royal Bison: What draws you to making or designing things?
Stephanie Simpson: Equal parts habit and curiosity: I’ve been making things long before anyone paid me to do it, and when I see a new medium, I almost always want to give it a try (no guarantee that I’ll do it well, alas, but I try nevertheless!).
RB: What’s new for your line or business this season?
SS: I have six new Canadian animal illustrations, a couple of Edmonton maps, and a series of fairly minimalist Canadian landscapes. In an ideal world, I’ll also have a few new national park scenes ready for Bison and maybe some little ceramics too!
RB: What do you think sets your work apart from similar makers or designers?
SS: My colour choices get a lot of comments from customers (two of my most popular prints are a neon pink and red bison, and a rainbow-coloured illustration of the Muttart Conservatory).
RB: How do you feel about being a part of the Edmonton creative community, or whichever community you call home?
SS: I think it’s a pretty special time to be a part of the Edmonton creative community for a couple of reasons. First up, it’s packed with people who are not only passionate about their work and incredibly skilled at what they do, but are also warm and funny and generous with their time and knowledge. Second, there are so many individuals, businesses, and organizations who are excited about promoting and supporting Edmonton-based makers and artists.
RB: Please gush about a few of your designer, maker, or creative crushes!
SS: I loved following Amy Dixon’s adventures painting her way around Europe and Emily Chu’s on-location sketching around Edmonton. How are these two so productive??
RB: Do you have a favourite holiday tradition you can share with us?
SS: My family and I celebrate Christmas, and we’re all about the quality stocking (where each stocking is topped with a different tropical fruit. Not sure how this became our tradition, but it is!).