“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,” says the famous quote attributed to Leonardo da Vinci; and at least when it comes to art, truer words have never been spoken.
Case in point: Emily Isabella’s illustrations. Made primarily using gouache, they present a simple, minimalist reality sprinkled with flowers and delicacies.
Based in the Hudson Valley, north of NYC, Isabella grew up in a family of artists and quickly realized her passion lies in the same field: “I remember being in the hallway of my first grade classroom and having an epiphany that I wanted to write and illustrate books!,” she shared in an interview with Red Cap Cards.
“I remember my mom advising me and saying, ‘Even when you don’t have work, work,’” she recalls. “The only way to improve is to practice.”
These days, Isabella’s practice is mainly focused on illustrations and textile design. You might have seen her work printed on bedding, clothing, and fabric, but also an array of products like dishes, rugs, toys, furniture, and wallpaper. Recent collaborations include Anthropologie and Kate Spade, with her products quickly snatched from the shelves.
With a background in textile design, Isabella’s illustrations make for wonderful patterns that often highlight the simple beauty of craftsmanship.
“As I grew older, I felt the need to have my own identity and being an artist seemed too expected,” says the illustrator. “I finally gave in to the fact that I wouldn’t want to do anything else and went to art school but I majored in Fibers which seemed different enough.”
Scroll down to see some of her recent designs and follow her on Instagram for more.