Recently, we partnered with Sydney based artist Mary Talato to create a campaign to coincide with Valentine’s Day. Titled “Love is Everything” the campaign ran across our Facebook and Instagram channels. Mary has been active in the creative space for over 18 years and is the Founder and Creative Director of creative consultancy and studio The Shape Of Things. We sat down with Mary to discuss who she is as an artist and her work on this project.

Who are you and how would you describe what you do?

I’m a mother, a wife and creative director.

I founded The Shape Of Things Studio a year ago. Prior to that, I’d been working almost 20 years in the creative industry; design, advertising and illustration. I’ve done a lot of luxury lifestyle work over the years. Most recently, I’ve been doing a lot more art-based projects and exploring animation and motion in general.

What work do you most enjoying doing?

Since starting my own studio, I’ve really loved the freedom to explore a much broader range of mediums—I’m the most inspired when I explore outside of my comfort zone. I enjoy doing any work that makes other people happy or feel inspired. This can be anything from art direction of an unusual or quirky shoot to creating an animation that has a sense of humour and feels fun! Now and again, I like to work on projects that require a methodical approach—as this allows my usually buzzy brain to rest.

What memorable responses have you had to your work?

When I created ‘The Magnificent Golden Egg-Laying Thingamabob’ for ArtsBrookfield, I loved the way it captured the imagination and sense of wonder in adults. There was curiosity and intrigue on their faces, which was the main aim of the installation. Even just reading the title made people happier.

Who or what has had the greatest influence on your work?

I’d say the biggest influence since I can remember is Pablo Picasso and his cubist period. Sounds very cliché, but til this day, I find something of value looking at his work and I’m drawn to it. And ‘Willy Wonka’ the original movie—how your imagination can manifest.

How is your personality reflected in your work?

I am a curious person by nature and love a good laugh. I think my work reflects the humour I find in everyday things. I also have a very organised side which likes order. So, curating and refining things with close detail, geometry and exactness is something that I do in my work. It’s kind of Japanese and made of two extremes. I can be Minimal or Maximal.

What does this piece aim to say?

The Valentine’s Day project was inspired by ‘LOVE’ of course! I thought about what love means to me and then what it means to everyone. Love can mean so many things. Each person has a different idea of love, but one thing is for sure—Love is the thing that makes the world go ‘round. That’s how I came up with ‘LOVE IS EVERYTHING’. And since it was predominately digital, I wanted to make the images come to life with animation.

8.What did you find most challenging/rewarding about this project?

The most challenging part of the project is interpreting Valentine’s Day in a fresh way and making it less about romance more about inclusivity. The most rewarding part of this project is the fun I have had making it! Seeing my illustrations move and mostly, the smile it puts on people’s faces.