Imagine a Christmas – a Christmas where...
Landing on The Calile website page – one is greeted with a charming tale of a day at The Calile accompanied by array of quirky colourful drawings created by talented illustrator Jessica Meyrick.
Incorporating Meyrick’s illustrations into the website design was considered integral to capturing and conveying the sensory and languorous atmosphere of The Calile.
“The beginning process was very collaborative – which was essential in forming a sense of the creative vision for the illustrations. From feedback and discussions on the first sketches, the ideas were developed until we had landed on just the right one,” says Meyrick.
“Seeing The Calile in person, and the strong visual identity built up by the creative team really helped initiate the first ideas. The building itself was so aesthetically pleasing - with a white brick façade, clean open spaces and beautiful curved archways – it was difficult not to feel inspired!”
For Meyrick focusing on the small, well considered details became a vital part of the process. Each element of The Calile was thoroughly considered.
“The atmosphere on James Street; the humidity in the air and the surrounding tropical plants really sparked my first sketches of lush foliage, exotic fruits and relaxed characters. A lot of my sketches at first focused on re-creating the sense I had of how it would feel to stay under the cabanas with a fresh coconut, surrounded by palms and hot air.”
Each idea was carefully sketched onto either A0 or A3 watercolour paper. Using a tiny brush, a mix of watercolours was carefully applied to reflect the vibrancy of the location.
“I consider where to start based on detail and background, but normally it’s with the central character. Working colour by colour, I’d slowly make my way around the image,” says Jessica.
“As I’m a perfectionist, a painting usually takes a day or so. But once I had completed each one, I’d scan it into photoshop and spend a couple of days making digital adjustments.”
While the characters have a certain whimsical air about them Jessica still found much of her inspiration was generated by the strength of the architecture and the story behind the hotel.
“The clean, minimal architectural design of The Calile was something I always kept coming back to. I loved the history of The Calile, and the cultural heritage that inspired the hotel’s feel and styling.”
“I also loved the sense of being so connected with the outdoors. I’m a lover of lush foliage, and there were plants everywhere! The large archways and open rooftop spaces made me feel immersed with the tropical outdoors. It was dreamy. I wanted to get the sense of utter relaxation and beauty across through the artwork.”
For Jessica having the freedom to draw her favourite things made this job memorable.
“What could be better! It was an absolute dream to draw tropical plants, exotic fruits, minimalist furniture and dreamy pools….
“The beauty of The Calile really speaks for itself. I’ve loved being involved with such a considered and well-designed project – I’m already planning when I can be lounging on that cabana!”