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Artist Interview with Meryl Turner

“The Best Beer is the One in Your Hand” states a typographic print from Meryl Turner. Her hand lettered quotes are often inspired by her love of craft beer so it’s no surprise to discover she produces her art in Bend, Oregon, also known as Beer Town USA. We asked this self proclaimed beer geek a few questions about her work:

What inspires your typography prints?

I’ve always loved finding new quotes. I could spend hours searching, and I always find sayings (inspirational, funny, quirky, or all of the above) that impact me in some way. I write them down, whether I use them or not. I think everyone can relate to quotes because one quote can mean many different things to different people. Words can become an interesting part of art, especially when we try to incorporate them in an unexpected way. Typography has been a passion of mine since I became a graphic designer. I love discovering new fonts, but even more I love creating my own. There’s something much more rewarding about creating your own typeface, as it takes much more time and patience, but the outcome is much more rewarding. Many of my quotes are focused around the great outdoors, travel and of course, craft beer. I love that I can combine all my passions into one common thread, but I also enjoy hearing quotes that others find and turning those into something special.

Mountains by Meryl Turner

Do you hand draw the lettering? Can you tell us more about this process?

“The beauty is in the process”
I found this quote last year, and have been inspired by it ever since. I started to hand draw all the lettering of my prints, and I don’t think I can ever go back. I find inspiration online, and take from that to create my own type. I take into account the length of the phrase or a single word, and how it all fits together. Sometimes it doesn’t fit as nicely as I expect, but the good thing about using pencil is the ability to erase and start over again. I know none of my lettering looks ‘digitally perfect’ but I think that’s the point. It’s not ‘perfect,’ but it’s not trying to be. I think the imperfections of the type are what make it unique. I try to sketch out the entire quote, and then finalize it with Prismacolor Fine Line Black Markers (which I absolutely love!). I’ve been using them for quite some time now, and they never let me down. I use printmaking paper, which has a nice texture to it, and I tear the edges which adds a different quality to the whole piece.

Do you remember when you wanted, or thought about being an artist?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been interested in art. I never thought of myself becoming a ‘fine artist’ so I didn’t really consider art as a realistic career path for me. I’ve taken art classes since elementary school and enjoyed every one of them. I guess art has just always been a part of who I am, I just never realized it could become my career until college. Before my sophomore year, one of my good friends took Intro to Graphic Design, and I thought I’d give it a try. Every since my first class I feel like I found exactly what I was looking for. I may not know exactly where this path may take me, but I know it’s going to be amazing. There’s nothing better than being able to do what you love everyday.

Cheers My Friend by Meryl Turner

Are their any particular influences for your work (other artists, music, literature, etc)?

I love Etsy. I think it is full of amazing artists. I love finding different illustrators, screen printers and letter press artists, but also just finding handmade goods in general.

I’m from Portland, OR, which is full of inspiration in itself. The art scene there is amazing,and I think I have definitely been influenced by the quirky but awesomely unique Pacific Northwest.

What are you working on or thinking about now?

I’ve been working on the handmade quotes for my upcoming artshow, but also some special additions to the mix. I’m starting to experiment with chalk and creating framed chalkboard quote pieces. I also found a wooden six pack carrier on Etsy which will become decorated with fun beer sayings.

The Best Beer is the One in Your Hand by Meryl Turner

What will we see from you next?

I definitely want to continue with quotes, but in new and different ways. Using new mediums while finding different canvases for my typography, such as a chalkboard or wood. I love the rustic, handmade aspect of art, and I think I want to push myself more in that direction.

Want to see more of Meryl’s work? click here

  1. wes (Reply) on Friday 30, 2014


  2. Kate Timmerman (Reply) on Friday 30, 2014

    Loved this!