Interviews

Artist Spotlight #24: Ashley Harry Haine

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Ashley Harry Haine

A glimpse at Ashley Harry Haine’s meticulous structural illustrations suggests the work of a trained architect or draughtsman. On the contrary, Ashley is a completely self-taught architectural illustrator who has showed his artworks at the 2016 Tokyo International Art Fair and the 2016 Royal Arts Prize in London. In our latest spotlight, Ashley talks about drawing inspiration from an emotional place and the rococo movement.

Q: Hello Ashley! Can you please tell us a bit about yourself?

A: Hi, I am a self-taught architectural illustrator. I draw mostly from imagination, otherwise from interior design ideas or something I’ve seen in magazines, books and TV. I’ve been drawing in this style for as long as I can remember, progressively giving more attention to detail and expanding in size and background stories. I’ve always drawn for myself; I see no further value in them other than for my own therapy, almost like a doodle, however in the last eighteen months I’ve been embarking on more commercial and commission work. To my shock, there are people out there who seriously love what I do. It’s been a complete honour working with interior designers, galleries and private commissioners who have given me exciting ideas to be translated in my style of drawing for their own desires.

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Q: Who inspires you? What inspires your art?

A: My art has always worked as a distraction from the real world for me, a kind of escapism where I tend to pigeon hole current life emotions; these pigeon holes turn into rooms that I decorate as elaborately as the emotion requires. I don’t know how to describe the connection between myself and architectural cross sections or floor plans style by way of digesting my own personal happiness or sadness. But it seems to work for me. I do prefer 1600’s-1900’s architecture, such as rococo and baroque like the European buildings of nobility and such.

Q: Do you have a preferred medium?

A: I do, much of my work is on A3 paper, I start drafting with a H2 Derwent pencil and then overlay using a 0.1 waterprood fineline pen.

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Q: How would you describe your style?

A: Fine line, free hand (no ruler), architectural illustrations, cross sections and floor plans.

Q: Can you please describe your artistic and creative process i.e.: from lingering idea to putting it into practice?

A: Strangely enough, I get most inspired when out in the country or out in open spaces, sometimes even empty building lots that’s ready to have a house built on it. The technical side of my drawing is that it has to work realistically. Also, if there is a room that seems unnecessary, the vision dissolves and I struggle to complete the drawing. It has to be true and genuine as a reflection of the emotional issue that I am addressing through the drawing. I tend to build a three to five story building most comfortably which is not too big or too small. I draft the idea in rough pencil outline, and then go over in detail in fine line pen. The idea sometimes changes progressively, and I feel it becomes its own of which I have only feelings for not ownership.

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Q: Where do you see your art practice taking you in the next five years?

A: I’ve spent the last twelve months marketing myself as available for commissions and selling prints of the work I’ve already done. Now I plan to work more on some new illustrations and updating my website. At this point, I’m open to anything that helps market my work and bringing awareness to anyone who loves what I do. I’d also love to get into wall paper. And I’d like to be more in the loop with interior designers who can find a great home for my illustrations.

Q: If you could recommend one artist, who would it be?

A: My Dad, Nick Haine. He’s an artist in England, and I spent some time with him earlier this year and he showed me some of his older works which I loved.

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Q: What is your favourite gallery?

A: I do love the Art Gallery of South Australia, it’s big, there’s lots to see and there’s often a new exhibition to check out. I like to take my son to the interactive children section they have too. I like the mix of classical art all the way through to modern art.

Q: Where can we find more of your work?

A: My website, tumblr and Facebook page.

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Q: Which three artists, dead or alive, would you invite to a dinner party?

A: Andy Warhol – I think the chat would be extreamly interesting even if it were a vague one. I’d love to see what he’d photograph, or even doodle..

Frida Kahlo – I love her passion, her culture, her feminist style. I think anything she would say I’d be in utter awe over.

I was thinking Jackson Pollock because I love his work but I don’t think social dinner parties are his thing so perhaps Georges Braque, I like his art, the colours he uses, lines and hints of text and images. I think the art alone makes me want to meet him, and every artist likes a good meal and a lot to drink.

– Masya Zabidi

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