When did your love of the occult and mystical symbolism first become apparent?

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I feel I’ve always been drawn to old, arcane symbolism since childhood. When you are young it is more of a natural and intuitive attraction, magic is more accessible, it is only when we grow older that we become more jaded to these different planes all around us. As a child my father was always introducing me to fantastical things; he was a great collector and also taught me the value and beauty of things old and forgotten. He had a lot of strange books and weird objects that looking back now, really formed many of my own interests. I remember having a postcard of the Egyptian goddess Isis, it just showed up one day among my things. I “laminated” it with masking tape and always carried it around, it was one of my first talismans. It wasn’t really until high school when I was faced with the challenge of being a poor kid in a small Christian boarding school did these symbols and their deeper meanings become more fiercely important to me.

What is your conceptual and design process like?

Many of my ideas stem from personal experience or emotional landscapes. They also stem from stories or places, such as the sea for the ‘sea witch’ series, Lily Dale, an old Victorian era community of Spiritualist mediums for the Lily Dale series. I draw and write a lot of notes, creating these kind of ghost-like skeletons that I fill in (or not, not every idea makes it) with the deeper processes of molds and casting etc. I also try to travel as much as possible, I believe even the smallest journey can provide inspiration; it shakes me up when I leave my comfort zone. For me the physical process of leaving my home or my city makes me very introspective. I get to know myself a little better. I find a rare moment of peace walking alongside a stream in a forest with people I care about.

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