Lili takes inspiration from nature by creating prints of plants and animals like marine creatures and birds (featured on the Moon Birds organic cotton t-shirt 2-pack). She is quoted in an article for Country Life saying, "My inspiration for each piece comes from being exposed to something beautiful in the natural world." As a Santa Cruz based artist, there is no shortage of botanical muses right outside her doorstep. On her website, you can find a variety of prints of plants that are native to California, but Lili’s inspiration is international. In an article about Lili on Santa Cruz’s travel blog, she identifies one of her favorite pieces as a print of the Australian shrub Protea Susana.
Lili’s process begins by intricately hand-carving the unique details of her subject into rubber blocks - this creates something that looks like a giant stamp. Sometimes multiple stamps are needed to individually capture the parts of a piece - like a prickly cactus on one block and its blooming flowers are another - this is called the jigsaw technique. She then rolls ink over the block to add the vibrant colors and gentle gradients that bring her pieces to life. The final step is stamping the blocks on a piece of paper or garment like a T-shirt or bandana. This can be done by hand using a tool called a baren, or by using a printing press. You can find more pictures of Lili’s tools and workspace on the homepage of her website - you can also follow @liliarnoldstudios on Instagram to see oddly satisfying videos of her process.
Lili’s prints communicate a love for the environment - her pieces will make you marvel at the beauty of the world around us. Flower fanatics like Lili will love the Lili's Garden dress. Marine life enthusiasts should check out our Orcas 2-piece organic cotton pajamas. Those who are in the market for clothes with positive messages will enjoy the Together is Better T-Shirt 2-pack from the Fair Trade Certified graphic t-shirt collection. Mightly kids of all kinds can find a print, or pattern that represents their passions from our line of organic cotton children's clothing.