Clare Brownlow X Schöffel CountryWords bySchoffel Country
May 18, 2021
We caught up with Artist Clare Brownlow, of Pheasant Feather Art to discuss our new collection of Brownlow Shirts, featuring three of Clare's stunning prints, printed onto a flattering and feminine ladies shirt.
Why did Schöffel Country decided to partner with Clare Brownlow?
“We decided to partner with Clare Brownlow because she is bloody brilliant! She is amazingly talented and incredibly hard working, and she is a dyed-in-the-wool country girl who lives and breathes the country way of life,” says Marcus Janssen, Brand Director at Schöffel Country. “Clare is also unique in that her stunning paintings are created using pheasant feathers as brushes, and they are fun, characterful and individual, and we just knew they would work brilliantly as shirt prints. Moreover, we are delighted to be able to support a British artist in this way.”
We caught up with the artist herself to chat about a new way of working and how she came to develop the style she is so well-known for today.
How has this year been for you so far?
I have had loads of commissions on, some fun and interesting ones. This, alongside launching my first online exhibition has kept me busy. After all the fun of home schooling, the boys are back at school now which has made things a bit quieter.
Could you tell us about the Artist Support Pledge initiative you were involved with during lockdown? What is the artist support pledge?
In the chaotic, uncertain times last year, the pledge was such a fab idea created by Matthew Burrows MBE in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as a way to support artists when the way in which the public viewed art was completely changed. It is now a global movement of connected communities committed to an equitable and sustainable economy for artists and makers of all countries, media and ethnicities. The movement uses Instagram to post their images using #artistsupportpledge and the maximum price that the art can sell for is £200. Everytime an artist reaches £1000 of sales, they pledge to buy £200 of work from other artists.
This upturn in interest gave me the idea to think about how people can view my art as best as possible when all my exhibitions were cancelled. I first filmed the exhibition and created points which you can zoom in and see details but this wasn’t quite right, so we then did a 3D scan. This was perfect. You can go where you like and get up close and personal to the paintings. I have had the most wonderful response and a fantastic sales record from this. I am about to launch my second exhibition this year earlier than I initially though because the response has been unbelievable. You can also have a snoop around the studio which is fun - you can see where I paint and see where all the paintings are created.
When can we expect to see the next lot of releases?
I am doing something really exciting with Grouse at the moment, I will be launching in time for summer sport and the grouse season (12th August).
How has your technique developed over time?
I started playing with art from a very young age, at first trying landscapes in oil. Then when I had children I had a bit of a break but as they grew up, I was back at it and the pheasant feather painting was purely by accident from playing around. With regard to the subject matter, it is what is around me that inspires me. I like to be able to do a full circle, painting a pheasant with a pheasant feather.
When it comes to country sports, how have they become part of your art?
I think I got an air rifle for my 10th birthday then a shotgun on my 14th. I have been stalking with my father, fishing, shooting, it’s in the blood. Then after all of that, I married a fishing obsessed country sportsman, so it is a completely natural part of my life. We are in the Scottish borders, so surrounded by nature and very close to some of the best sporting locations.
The Schöffel collaboration is so well suited. How did the process work?
With Schöffel I was given a lot of free rein, I wanted to get the countryside and colours together. I had a chat with the Product Development team about what people might be after and we made mood boards with some colour inspiration. With regard to the shirt designs it is completely new to me and so I had to think colourways and different poses on a much smaller scale. The team were fantastic along the way, it has been a really cool collaboration to be a part of.
And were you already a Schöffel fan?
Between my husband, my sons and myself, I think we have every colour of the rainbow in the fleece gilets. I have a very cool jacket too. All my family wear Schöffel, the jacket is hugely popular.
Summer is just around the corner, what do you have planned when we get a sense of normality back?
Because of the last few years I am kind of stopping the shows and just focusing more on the online exhibition aspects. People can come to the studio, they can come and have a try too once things open up. It is more of an experience and makes it a bit more personal. I am quite busy with commissions too, and I have been doing a few ‘hand finished prints’ which is where I add a little originality to a print with a pheasant feather. I just can’t wait to hang out with my friends in the garden and enjoy a glass of rosé this summer!
The ‘Brownlow Shirt’ retails at £99.95 and is available on the Schoffel Country Website
To see more of Clare's work and view her online exhibition please visit her website, clarebrownlow.co.uk