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We recently collaborated with Teesside-based artist Abby Taylor to produce artwork for our North Star headquarters. We wanted artwork that represented our heritage and Teesside roots, we began life in 1974 buying and refurbishing older terraced housing in Middlesbrough and Hartlepool, and we were keen to support local talent.
Abby Taylor is an award-winning, graphic designer and illustrator specialising in illustrations of landscapes and buildings, as well as branding businesses. You may recognise her work from the artwork series at Hartlepool railway station, which she collaborated on with her partner, Owen Smith.
Abby Taylor said: “I was really excited when North Star approached me to create some artwork of the Transporter Bridge for their Headquarters. North Star provides a wealth of support to the local community in so many ways and to create artwork for such an admirable business fills me with immense pride.
Throughout the project, I worked closely with Laura Wood, whose passion for this venture and North Star was tangible. During the drafting stages, I showed some wonderful photos taken by James Clegg, to Laura, which formed the base of my design. I then experimented with the composition in the designated space, by using a mock-up. After I was given the go-ahead, I started drawing and played around with a few colour options which North Star got to choose from.
The illustration style I often use is very detailed and reminiscent of vintage travel posters, but with a modern twist. I have been wanting to expand on my existing portfolio of North-East landmark illustrations to include more of Teesside. Being from Stockton myself, I’m passionate about showing the North East in a positive light through colourful, contemporary design.
Up until now, my work has largely focused on Stockton, Hartlepool and Newcastle based locations so I most certainly welcomed the opportunity to produce this illustration of Middlesbrough’s iconic Transporter Bridge. Though it was a challenge, including all the tiny blue lines and fine details of the bridge, my collaboration with North Star has been one of my most favourite projects to date.”