How did you approach the process of developing the GALLANT hub maps? Had you done other artistic maps before this project?
I loved working on these maps! I had created a couple of maps before, for Govanhill Festival and RSPB but they were slightly more illustrated and used as posters. I was a little daunted at first at the scale of the project and the amount of detail required in a short amount of time, my artwork notoriously takes a lot of time.
However once I started , I soon realised it was very similar to creating my own illustrations. It started with sketching out the composition on paper and then looking at all the fantastic inspiration that had been collected. Instead of going out myself with a camera, this time I had a group of people exploring the area from different interests and angles. It was fantastic! With so many photographers and my own knowledge of the areas, I got moving forward to the drawing pretty quick. The fantastic GALLANT online digital map had been created, marking all the keypoints, routes and photograph locations. This turned out to be such a great tool for me.
I chose to work digitally to speed up the process. This allows changes to be made along the way without reworking original artwork. I actually invested in a larger drawing tablet once I discovered I was creating the three maps. This technology allows you to draw organically but directly into a digital file, composing the map of many many 'layers'.
I always hope to be involved in more collaborative projects like this one. Where people and a pride of place can change things. I loved being involved in this project and in hindsight I can see why. It sparks back to my own illustrative inspiration. Not only does it celebrate Glasgow but it brings people together, asking you to get involved and work close to home to create a bolder, greener Glasgow for us all to live in. Our Dear Green Place.
What’s next for Libby Walker?
I suppose I'm at a point now where I feel more comfortable calling myself an artist. At first I felt I was working either for commercial or self initiated product briefs. Now I'm more confidently calling myself an artist as I create artwork to express myself. I think lockdown and our climate emergency inspired me to connect with nature more and have found new inspiration. I spent some time recently developing ideas in a larger more painterly style. This is the start of a new way of expression for myself and I'm excited to explore further on the theme of what it is to be a Scottish woman, looking at my own family history and how to express emotions and feelings in the place I hold within my own history. So as they say, watch this space.
I mentioned my new studio in Glasgow's city centre. After lots of moving around I'm delighted to know I will be here for the foreseeable and I'm excited to build upon that. I have moved my business online where you are able to browse and purchase my artworks. By selling online I have been able to carve out more time to be creative and this has started a new exciting chapter for me.
Check out more of Libby's work on her website: www.libbywalker.co.uk