by Casper Johansson in New Illustration on Monday 9 July 2007

Melbourne-based artist Beci Orpin pretty much does it all – from illustration to screen printing, textile and fashion design. We spoke to her recently about her work: Your website is very cute. Got a thing for teeth? ‘Surprisingly not. The tooth was inspired by a dentist sign I used to walk past everyday on the way to work. For some reason, it struck a chord with me. So one day I did my own tooth [which features as the opening image on her website]. I didn’t use it for anything for a few months, but then I used it at the last minute for my second Princess Tina collection and people loved it. So it just kind of grew from there’. How dynamic is the art scene in Melbourne? ‘Melbourne seems to have a lot of small galleries opening lately which is great. There is a lot of good local talent, like Conor O’Brien, p.a.m, Josh Pathetic, and Eveline Tarunadjaja, which definitely contributes to a healthy art scene as well. I do very much like Melbourne’s alleys and laneways and hidden spots. I think it personifies the city and makes it more interested in less commercially based work than some of the other places in Australia’. You studied textile design, which explains your fashion projects. But where’s your heart at? ‘It’s changing. It used to be all about making graphics for clothing and producing Princess Tina. But now I have other things that are important. Doing art shows has been super fun and rewarding lately because I have been venturing into different mediums. I still love making Princess Tina, but it’s good to put that energy into other projects too. Overall I would say that everything I do comes back to textiles, which is my first passion’. [see more work by Beci Orpin]