Meet Lori Melliere & Ashley Brown, the founders of Papermill Creative, two local librarians making art celebrating North Carolina towns. Their art is vibrant watercolor designs are full of details, inviting the viewer in to explore the neighborhoods they are inspired by. They sell prints, greeting cards, and other gifts!
Who or what inspires you and your creative process?
Papermill Creative art is all about the neighborhoods and towns we’re surrounded by – so I’m inspired by the built environment I see every day. I try to capture what these places feel like right now, so I mix in historical architecture with new buildings, and famous landmarks with tiny details.
Tell us about your favorite product from your collection.
I’m a Durhamite at heart, but I really love our downtown Raleigh design. There’s so much variety and complexity in the design. Besides, what other city would I be able to draw a state capitol building next to a hot dog restaurant next to a giant acorn?
Tell us something exciting that you have planned for Paper Mill Creative in the next year.
We’re working on getting our designs onto tote bags (recommendations for local printers welcome!), and in addition to adding some new neighborhood designs, we’re hoping to branch out and introduce some entirely new product lines.
What kind of creative patterns, routines or rituals do you have?
Before beginning a new design, we meet up for coffee or a beer and walk around the neighborhood and look at the architecture, foliage, signage – what is the unique vibe of this place? Even if it’s a place we’ve been hundreds of times before, it helps to look at the environment from the perspective of Papermill Creative, and we always notice something new and surprising!
Name one resource that your label could not live without.
These drawings would be very difficult to do without Google Maps street view for reference!
Find Papermill Creative at the upcoming May 5th Patchwork Market at Fullsteam Brewery!