Artcrush. Instalment 1: Beci Orpin.

by Clear Water

Welcome to the new Artcrush series. It dawned on us not long ago that we've collaborated with a whole bunch of really talented people but kept most of the stories behind them all, to ourselves. Pretty selfish, right? Well that's why we're here now.

The Artcrush series represents a space in which we can talk about the artists, designers and craftspeople who allow us to do what we do and inspire us to keep doing it. 


For our first instalment we spoke to local Australian designer, crafter, illustrator, business-woman and all round lovely person, Beci Orpin. Beci has been in our family for a long time and the amount of work that she continues to produce is awe-inspiring, as is the work ethic with which she manages to get everything done.

You'll know Beci from a number of projects that she has worked on including the pillowcases she produced with us, her most recent book Make and Doher role as art director at Arro Home, writing and illustrating children's books, being a mum and not to mention working alongside husband and business partner, Raph Rashid. We like to imagine their house is a Willy Wonka-like cavernous space that has both edible and papier-mached tacos, burgers and donuts. It just has to be!

Beci was born to hippie parents and spent the early years of her life in the back of a Landcruiser travelling around Australia and never having to worry about silly things like shoes. After a series of "phases" in her youth from grunge to indie to rave, Beci graduated with a BA in Textile Design and started working and exhibiting locally and internationally. Nowadays, she leads a domestic but none the less busy existence with the occasional debaucherous evening thrown in for good measure. When she's not designing or drawing you'll usually find Beci hanging out with her kids Tyke and Ari.

We asked Beci to answer a few questions for us and she happily obliged (read: managed to squeeze it in to her crazy schedule):

1. What song/album do you have on repeat at the moment?
It's a toss up between new Sufjan album 'Carrie & Lowell' and new Kendrick album 'To Pimp a Butterfly'. I've also been listening to a lot of the Cocteau Twins - 'Cherry coloured funk' is my favourite. Also, the Ta-ku mixes for Cereal magazine. Sorry - so hard to choose a favourite! 

2. Could you take a photo of something and tell us a story about it?
I'm really into the change of the season - I get pretty excited when a new one comes around. Autumn makes me particularly excited - the perfect not-too-hot-blue-skied-days, the crisp mornings, mandarins, pomegranates etc. Autumn sunsets are also by far the best - the colours are so good. If I see a hint of pink or orange in the sky I run upstairs to our bathroom where you get the best sunset view, or jump on my bike and try and photograph it, or just bathe in it's glory somewhere. I took this photo 2 days ago from said bathroom window - this sunset was a pretty great one, it had perfect gradient from orange to pink to twilight blue. We were in the middle of dinner when I took it and I got in trouble with the family for leaving mid-tacos, but I couldn’t resist. It’s impossible to capture how amazing it actually was, but you get the idea… 



3. What are your 5 favourite products from our store? Click on images to shop.
1. The Nathalie du Pasquier book, Don't take these drawings seriously
2. A jar of Coop's Hot Fudge
3. The Small Mound sculpture by Sarah Crowest.

4. The Misaki Kawai pillowcases

5. The Accept the Good letterpress poster 
4. If you could papier mache one person’s head right now, who would it be?
My cat Tio (actually - I already did, in my last book!).
5. What is your favourite thing about being a mother?
Watching humans you made turn into individuals. Conversations with them are so good too.

Make sure you put Beci on your radar, if she isn't already. She's our current Artcrush not only because her work is incredible, but because she's Mum/superhuman that proves you can do it all and then do some more!