26 Jun 2018
Morag’s mantra is “make happy those who are near and those who are far will come”. Morag lives in London and has been fascinated by how colour, pattern and words can change urban environments and peoples perceptions of spaces into places. From schools and hospitals to cultural hubs and town centres Morag transforms public spaces by creating engaging experiences for everyone. Morag’s work has been widely published around the world for her social approach to project and her distinct use of colour and pattern often incorporating positive messaging.
Morag will be speaking at the third #tptalks for 2018. To join us, please register here.
Your work seems to reply on collaboration, and managing teams of people to bring the final product to life. How does this work?
Morag Myerscough: My projects are all very different. Some are just solely from me in isolation, some I collaborate with Luke Morgan and some I work with social groups on many different levels.
It all depends on what the aim of the final outcome is.
For example the 200m wall installation I made in Linkoping Hospital Sweden, is very personal and based on my colour tweets I extracted from tweet archive.
In this instance as the piece was so large I employed people to paint the triangles with me to my exact layouts.
However the Belonging Bandstand which is also a a project very close to my heart. I have been fascinated by understanding what Belonging means to me and how and if it is possible to make work that give people a sense of Belonging. So this project was made with the East Sussex community. I carried out 6 workshops organised for me by Ditchling Museum of Art and Craft with 6 social groups in Sussex on the subject of Belonging.
I love witnessing unexpected accidents, that can be used another time.
Do you ever feel yourself getting too comfortable (be it with a particular style, type of project, field, environment, medium)? If so, what steps have you taken to shake things up?
No, my work is always evolving and what I am enjoying is learning from the previous piece and using what I have learnt in the next piece. I love witnessing unexpected accidents, that can be used another time.
In your professional life, do you like to plan ahead, and set specific goals and timeframes? Or do you prefer to stay flexible, and leap upon opportunities (even those that significantly alter your path) as they arise?
I don’t plan, I know now what I don’t want to do but I often don’t know what I do want to do. I tend to go with the flow. When I see a potential in an opportunity I usually go for it.
Specialise or generalise?
I like the word ‘polymath’ which I don’t think is ‘Specialise or generalise’ but I do believe a person can be good a many things and be very layered to make a whole I don’t believe you need to be on a singular linear route.
How do you relax?
I watch crap TV.
As a user of type, are you always on the lookout for new typefaces? What are some things that grab your eye the most when you are searching? (e.g. marketing copy, in-use specimens, OpenType features, glyph set, language support etc).
Favourite television show / movie / book / magazine (pick as many as you like to answer)
What does a typical day look like for you?
I usually get up at 6am. Let my puppy Elvis out of his cage and put him outside. Then have a cup of tea. Work on some projects for a few hours. Take Elvis for a walk and then work all day.
Usually the days are organic I just think the night before what I want to achieve the next day sometimes I manage it and sometimes not.
What is your favourite way to start your day? What is the first thing you do when you sit down at your desk?
Seeing Elvis, he is only 6 months so loves waking each day. A cup of tea and seeing the sun shining in the windows. Makes me happy.
Then I start reading emails and instagram.
Do you prefer a permanent/dedicated workspace, or do you like to keep mobile (i.e. cafes, outdoors etc)
I have a building that I live and work in. At the moment I am working on the kitchen table and sometime I work down in my studio and tomorrow I will be working on the train.
– Interview by Dave Coleman.