Lotti Brown Designs - Art to Connect with the Natural World for Calm, Balance and Joy...
I'm Lotti (Charlotte), the face behind Lotti Brown Designs.
I'm a professional artist specialising in:
- pet art
- custom pet portraits
- and art inspired by the natural world.
My art is overflowing with intense detail and rich colours – crisp lines, vibrant splashes of colour and wonderfully soft blends – all in one beautiful, joyful artwork.
I live in a tiny village in the tranquil countryside of Yorkshire (the flat bit in the the Vale of York, not the dramatic hilly bit!)...
...in a cosy, little-too-small, country cottage with my wonderful husband and my beautiful dog – naughty Noah, a gorgeous, sweet-faced, and cheeky-minded rough collie who really keeps me on my toes!
My art is inspired by walks and times outdoors with my dog. I create art about:
- our precious pets
- nature and wildlife
My art is about the things that are important to me, and I think to you, too. The things that I believe are essential to our well-being – being out in nature, appreciating nature, and feeling part of the natural world – and our special bond with our furry family members – our cherished pets and animal friends and companions.
Making art out of these things makes them special… for me and for you, too – it’s a reminder of the things that are important to us – something that we can see and connect with every day, perhaps to get us in the right frame of mind before breakfast in the morning – and start the day feeling love and joy for our life and our world.
A bit about my process
I'd love to share with you a bit about my process, and my story, so that you can get a glimpse behind the scenes, and get to know me, and my artwork, a bit better...
I just love to draw, so I draw things - I like to draw with pens, on card, so that's what I do.
I will nearly always also hand-colour these drawings .
I find it very zen-like to spend the time drawing and painting on paper, rather than staring at a screen, so I love to do as much as I can in the time-honoured artistic tradition, before turning to technology.
I do love that technology can really assist the artistic process though...
I scan my drawings in, and put them into Adobe Illustrator, so that I can work with them in vector format, to resize, adjust colours and experiment with layout and scale to my heart's content.
Take a look below to see how it goes... click on the images to make them larger and see the full story!
My Art Story
I haven't always been an artist although I've loved to draw ever since I could first hold a crayon. Art is my way of looking at the world and understanding it.
Growing up I always longed to be an artist, although I was always encouraged down more academic and practical routes instead.
I remember creating a ‘bubble’ art work aged 6, at school, in crayon and watery paint, of a fairy-tale underwater world. I remember this particularly as I won a prize! :)
I’d moved to the other end of the country and the prize was sent on to me, together with my prize-winning circular piece of art.
I felt so proud and very surprised. I loved to draw and my mum told me that I drew very carefully, even as a tiny tot, picking a daisy and studiously inspecting it and counting the petals before drawing it.
But this was the first time I’d felt that I could do something that might be praised or valued – a quiet, shy child, this was a way for me to speak and I was so encouraged when others liked what they heard and saw!
I had a wonderful art teacher through school, who taught me how to really look at what I wanted to draw. At 16 I thought I was going to have to give up learning art, but he helped me continue, by mentoring me while I studied A-level art in my spare time, and as a result I won the school prize for art in my final year.
At University, in Exeter, UK, I started doing a degree in modern languages, but after the first year, I realised I’d made a mistake by not following my artistic dreams. It was too late to go to art school by then (or so I thought) so instead, I studied art history and desk-top publishing as part of a modular degree.
Soon after leaving university I had found a job I loved that utilised my drawing talents, and I was professionally trained to draw maps and plans, which I loved to do.
It was very fine and detailed work and has strongly influenced my love of intricate detail and my choice of drawing with very fine pens to create my art now.
Initially the maps and plans were hand-drawn and hand-tinted with inks, and bound up with card and fabric, and in later years created using a computer-aided mapping system.
After nearly a decade of maps, I found myself with a forced career change, after becoming ill with ME (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) which I had for several years.
I lost my job because of this, and so started studying interior and garden design, and ended up becoming a design writer, home colour consultant, freelance writer and web editor, for several years...
I loved being self-employed, starting the day with a walk in the fields with my dog, a wonderful retired racing greyhound called Ginger.
I enjoyed learning lots about flowers and immersing myself in ideas on how to use colour, and how different colours gave different feelings and emotions.
I built up two big websites over several years. I also wrote design books and e-books that were sold on my site, and on Amazon.
It was very satisfying being able to help so many people, (sometimes on the other side of the world!), turn their own homes and gardens into spaces that made them feel happy.
In 2011, my business took a sudden nose-dive (due to a Google algorithm change), but when months of trying to fix it turned into years and the whole thing was starting to really get me down and discouraged, I realised that I didn’t feel passionate enough about it to do any more to save it...
I decided, if I was going to have to rebuild my business, I was going to build the one I wanted to create in my heart of hearts and do that thing I’d always been told that I wasn’t good enough to actually do – to become an artist.
I started to draw again!
Starting to Design
My very first designs were of the retired greyhound I had then - Ginger - and they were created using Powerpoint.
I put them onto Spoonflower and started to sell these and similar designs on fabric.
These designs actually quickly became very popular, and led to me having my own range of collars with collar-maker MeggieMoo in Denmark. You can read more about this here.
Encouraged, I began taking classes in textile and surface pattern design, and learning as much as possible about the industry, and about the computer programmes (Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop), and practising with my art and designing...
For a couple of years, I licensed my artwork out onto wallpapers, fabrics and products like cushions, deckchairs and even phonecases.
Then, I decided to work on artwork that was the most meaningful to me and concentrate on creating work based on what was important to me – nature, flowers, wildlife, animals and pets…
Having grown up in rural Wales, living in the countryside, surrounded by green and being able to see the sky and feel the wide open spaces is so important to me.
Out walking every day in nature with my dog, I am able to gain calm and energy from being in the green of nature, with the earth beneath my feet and the sky – vast and open – above my head.
And all the time, my trusted dog close by my side...
We love to tread familiar (and new!) paths together, side by side, enjoying relaxation and calm.
There’s so much to see in nature – flowers, feathers, little birds, foxes, hares, deer – and it’s so interesting to see everything change with the seasons and experience the cycle of life anew each year.
As humans, we need nature.
We need the green, the sky. We need to connect with the natural world, gain energy and clarity from nature – realise that we are a part of this great world, all together.
My art celebrates the little lifts that nature gives us – the joy, the beauty, the calm, and the connection with the wider world that we can gain through walking in nature and through bringing animals into our lives and our homes.
I realised that art is a way that I can bring love and joy to others…
My art makes me happy and I really hope that it makes you happy too...
I love to use my art to celebrate our connections with our pets and the natural world, and I love that my art can bring love and joy into the world and become a lasting symbol for us of our place in nature and our bond with our pets.
Please stay and browse for a while. You can explore my galleries from the menu at the top of the page, including behind-the-scenes looks at my artworks. If you're stuck, take a look at my All About Everything page to see what catches your fancy or browse my blog...
Or you can take a peek at my additional stockists for more art products and fabrics.
All intellectual property rights in my designs and products (and in the images, text and design of this website) are and will remain the property of Charlotte Brown. Any infringement of these rights will be pursued seriously