In our 'Inside Bellerose' series, we chose to meet with Lara, our graphic designer in charge of creating prints for all our collections. Lara is French and decided to move to Brussels a year and a half ago with the wish to make a living out of a creative job. Talking to her, it seems like an already accomplished objective. We invite you to dive into her world and discover a bit more about her job position, her work process and how she keeps her inspiration flowing.
Why did you choose to work at Bellerose ?
I had just arrived in Belgium at that time and working in a small, almost family, Belgian business attracted me. I’m far more at ease working within a small team on creative projects than in a bigger structure with more commercial tasks. There is a good balance at Bellerose between quality of work and creativity.
What do your tasks consist of? And what is your work process?
My tasks consist of creating prints and applying them to specific garments. In terms of work process, I first research the next collection theme to get in the mood of the time and place, for instance the first one I worked on was the “70’s California” for the current Spring/Summer collection in store. This usually takes about a month. Then comes the most creative phase - and my favourite one - I start creating print ideas using any techniques I want (paint, colouring pencils, spray, pastels, etc). Then I submit my proposals to the designers team and we decide which prints could be selected for which collection (women, men or children) and for which piece of clothing. From then on, my job becomes more technical. It’s about adjusting my work to the clothes and adding little details that make Bellerose different and making sure it will be printed well.
How do you find your inspiration?
By observing and absorbing a lot. Of course, travelling, libraries, exhibitions and music inspire me a lot. But it’s the details of daily life that inspire me the most. That can happen when walking on the streets, dining at friends houses or even, strangely enough, on Facebook. I’m very curious of what people post online. Yesterday, I felt pretty inspired by a photo posted by a friend, that was actually a picture of… cheese. Yes, cheese.
What word best describes your musical taste?
Eclectic! I listen to a lot of genres. It just depends on my mood. I work with music all day long, it helps me to concentrate and to get in the mood. Most of the time, I’m very much into Disco or Brazilian and African music. But lately, I’ve been more into Rap. And since I’m in Brussels, I listen to a lot of Belgian music too. I very much like the mixcloud account and youtube playlists of The Word Magazine, as well as stroom.tv and 22tracks. I also spend quite some time on soundcloud and very much like the artists of Vlek label or Le Pacifique. And I still enjoy the radio, especially Radio Panik and Radio Campus or sometimes FM Brussels. And I admit that when driving in the channels of the inner-city highway, I listen to Nostalgie full volume, especially if it’s Madonna’s “Holidays” song or Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls just want to have fun”.
My Laptop - Clockwise: Not today sticker by Lazy Oaf. - The smiley by Please Let Me Design (for
the birth of a daughter’s friend). - The girl on all fours by Paul Loubet (the guy who did my tattoos).
- Car crash by Charles Renel. - The little white fellow for Schiev Music Festival / Beursschouwburg
(I’m in charge of their communication). - Spooky Mansion San Fransisco-based music band (and
friends of mine). - Skull by Paul Loubet.
Who are your favorite visual artists?
Again I like many things! One movement I particularly appreciate is the “Outsider art” and kids’ drawings. It is so pure and inspiring! Other than that, spontaneously, I would say, Shana Moulton’s films, Pierrick Sorin’s videos, Sterling Ruby’s spray paintings, Henri Matisse’s collages, Etienne Gros’ sculptures, Louis Morris’ colors, Ida Ekblad’s painting, Nicky Assmann’s installations, Jean Michal Basquiat’s writings, Sammy Stein’s illustrations, Daniel Brereton’s comic strips, Paul Loubet’s tatoos,
Bruno Munari’s books and Jean-Marc Ballée’s posters. I also very much like artistic reflexions around the Internet and social networks or other modern concerns. For instance I was very interested in a website created by Kyle McDonald that I saw at V2 in Rotterdam, called "Exhausting a Crowd”: an addictive 'tableau vivant' of a packed Piccadilly Circus, allowing observers to attach a limitless number of comment “tags” to the people in the crowd.
Do you think aliens exist?
Of course they do! I’m a huge fan of everything that connects with alien studies. I can’t understand people who aren’t concerned by this or think that we are all alone in the universe. I personally enjoy imagining other kinds of lives and operating modes. One of my favorite films on the matter is “Barbarella”. It’s beautiful and I wish I had designed the decors and the costumes. So I think they exist and, at the moment, it’s better they haven’t make contact with us because human beings would most probably not respond well to this and are likely to try to dominate them.
What do you think of Brussels?
Everything looks more fun, more authentic, more spontaneous and doable here! If I want to create an exhibition space, it feels like I can easily find a well-located place for a decent price. And I could easily find cool artists to exhibit and friendly people to help me with my project. People seem more open and more optimistic than in France. And I love that Brussels is neither too small nor too big and it’s a multicultural city. It’s just a perfect place for me, even if I’m still open to discovering the world.
Can we know what you’re working on at the moment?
I’m currently working on the next Spring/Summer 2017 collection now. But I can’t tell you more about it. Or only that I think it’s going to be a great one. We are all very inspired by the theme. So stay tuned!