Artist's Story: Gretchen Roehrs

You've probably seen her work on your feeds, or maybe you caught her on Rachel Ray. Meet Gretchen Roehrs, the woman who is single handedly proving it should be socially acceptable to play with your food. Learn more about the lady behind these fashionable fruit illustrations, how she got her start, and the creative process behind her work. Spoiler: she's as fun as you'd think.

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What your friends call you: Gretchen or GR

Where you call home: Home is a warm bed of pasta

Where you grew up: Bucolic fields of rural Missouri

Your day job: Tech designer

Things that make you smile: the color yellow, puppies, smiles

Your favorite studio tool: brush pen/mandolin slicer

You're inspired by: markets in Chinatown, spaghetti westerns

How did you get the idea for these whimsical drawings? Doodling has always been a lunchtime activity for me, especially when I moved from fashion to tech, and it was only a matter of time before my lunch made it into my illustrations.

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Did you ever imagine these drawings would gain such popularity? It never occurred to me that anyone outside my circle of friends would find my illustrations entertaining. It’s so flattering!

What do you find most intriguing about the fashion world? Fashion is an inspiring world to be a part of because it forces you to be creative within some strict usability guidelines—at the end of the day, someone still has to wear the designs you put out there. People always ask me how I got into designing interfaces for apps and websites, but it’s so similar to my background designing garments for people to wear. You have to think about how a person can interact with a tee shirt and a mobile application in an elegant way without them ever thinking about the tee shirt or the app. It must be a seamless experience!

What other types of art do you create? I like to think that I’m an artist, and the ‘fine’ art I busy myself with is oil painting. I keep them more private, as I’m much more sensitive about a painting I slaved over for days than I am about a cartoonish sketch I post on Instagram over lunch.

 

"Fashion is an inspiring world to be a part of because it forces you to be creative within some strict usability guidelines."

 

What other creatives do you follow? I’ve followed Donald Robertson, Richard Haines, David Downton and other illustrators for many years. It’s such an inspiring medium, blurring the line between cartoonist and fine artist. 


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