At Rachel, it takes a team to be able to offer quality products at fair prices, but our exclusive designs often begin with one person in particular; Artistic Director, Laetitia Chapuis.
A graphic designer and illustrator from Lyon, who has been living in Montreal for almost 2 years, Laetitia is the driving force behind some of our newest products and the creative behind the exclusive prints found on our packaging, tote bags, and new storage pouches.
You’ll easily recognize her artwork that embraces colourful tones and that inspires via fun and vibrant imagery. In fact, you may have already purchased it!
I sat down with Laetitia at our Mile-End offices to learn all about her creative process and to talk about Rachel’s new exclusive prints and products!
1. How did your journey as an artist begin?
I started to breathe new life into my creations about 3 years ago, when I started making photomontages of the city of Lyon. Little by little, I showed my work to my friends and I felt a real interest and received a lot of encouragement. Finally, I decided to find an exhibition space that would be interested in exhibiting my work. It gave me a lot of momentum to produce new things, including illustrations that are now at the center of my work.
2. Are there any important figures in your life that have influenced your journey as an artist?
My friends and family pushed me a lot, yes. I’m a very reserved person, who doesn’t like to be in the spotlight. They are the ones who gave me courage and support, and who gave me the momentum I needed to get started. And then, of course, the people who selected me for my first exhibition. They believed in my work, it gave me confidence to start again.
3. How did you discover and start working with Rachel?
When I first discovered Rachel, I have to admit that I was intrigued by the company name. My middle name is also Rachel and I use it as my artist name: Rachel Handmade Goods! My work revolves mainly around women, which ultimately also gives us one more thing in common!
After digging deeper and having my first interview with Rachel co-founder, Melanie, we discovered shared values. I felt a lot of kindness within the Rachel team, which definitely made me want to join the adventure.
4. Can you tell us a little bit about the illustrations you created for Rachel?
I'm always inspired by softer imagery and warm colours - I think that’s Rachel’s vibe.
5. What was the inspiration behind the illustrations created for Rachel?
I really like the work of Henri Matisse and how he works with shapes. In fact, I was inspired by him to create one of the t-shirts from our up-coming collection. I’m used to being inspired by the woman’s body, but this time I worked with a more spontaneous technique. You’ll get to see the results very soon!
6. Rachel’s new tote bag is also so original! What was your design process to create it?
I wanted to share a different view of nature with intricate forms that are not necessarily perfect.
7. Fill in the blank: When I’m not creating as an artist, I am...
I'm quite curious about manual work and I really like to test different things. Lately, I tried Linocut Printmaking, macramé and even sewing. I’m also a big plant lover! I have a lot of them at home and I need 20 minutes to water them all. My collection continues to grow! Besides that, I really like photography and I am lucky to be able to do it regularly at Rachel, and during my travels.
8. What are you excited to create next for Rachel?
I’m really looking forward to creating new visuals for textile prints. It’s really fun to see clients walking around in the prints I created - it always makes me smile.