Following an earlier Paperblanks release featuring the imagery of British Columbia artist Alistair Bell, we have ventured further into the realm of Canadian art with this Tracy Walker’s Animal Friends series. This collection also expands our lineup of playful designs with a sweet charm in the tradition of our Laurel Burch, Mila Marquis, and Wonder & Imagination covers.
From the moment she moved to Canada from England as a child, Tracy Walker was smitten with the natural world. In an interview with our Endpaper Blog, Ms. Walker acknowledged that being creative has always been essential to her. Luckily, she had her parents’ and teachers’ support in shaping her professional life around her two passions of nature and art. Trained as an artist, illustrator and graphic designer, she has a steadily growing list of works commissioned by those attracted to using her alluring visual language as a means of communicating their message.
Living in Uxbridge, Ontario, which is officially designated as the Trail Capital of Canada, Tracy blends nature motifs with symbols, icons, and simplified shapes largely characteristic of 20th-century art. Her distinctive style shows through in all her creations, be it her whimsical illustrations, product labels, papercuts, or shadow boxes.
The artist is no stranger to book design herself, having spent one leg of her creative journey working in the field. In this case, however, we sought to collaborate with Tracy as we particularly admired her unique portrayals of the animal world.
Whale and Friend depict the biggest mammal there is, the blue whale, and one of the biggest gifts there is – friendship. This delightful cover inspires the imaginations of people young and old. In fact, we’ve already heard from one Paperblanks fan who said that what we have here is a “Saturn” whale. Notice the rings around its tail!