Interview With Coulson Macleod

Twitter is a lovely thing. It allows us to meet all sorts of cool and interesting people out there in the blogsphere (yes I just said blogsphere) as well as some pretty talented artists and vendors. {if you would like to follow us on Twitter, head here!}We are adding Coulson Macleod to our ‘we heart’ list.

From their lovely website, we thieved this little blurb: “Coulson Macleod was formed in March 2009 and is a UK-based art business specialising in the design and production of handmade, typography-based artwork printed onto natural and reclaimed materials including wood, metal, stone, fabric, and recycled paper.”

They are some pretty cool folks over there and have been getting lots of big wig attention and press coverage, including the likes of Jamie Oliver, design*sponge and Elle Decoration magazine!

We wanted to get the inside track with the couple team behind Coulson Macleod and they kindly agreed!

Question. Tell readers a little about yourself:


Response. I’m Hannah, the Macleod half of Coulson Macleod. The other half, Coulson, is my fiancé Mark. Together we run Coulson Macleod, a small but growing global brand specialising in typographic art. Our typographic prints are designed by us. Not only do we design the artwork, but also the frames. The frames are then handmade by professional artisans using natural materials.

All of our prints are made with love in the UK. We currently print onto canvas, oak, antique roof timbers, solid limestone, recycled paper, and weather-rusted steel. All our designs are exclusive to Coulson Macleod and sold via our website.

Question. Tell us a little about your favourite project that you have worked on thus far?

Response. Well we had a lot of fun creating this ‘Pukka Print’.

We were asked by The Jamie Oliver Foundation to design a bespoke typographic print for their annual fundraising event, A Big Night Out With Jamie, which was held last November at St. Paul’s Cathedral. Our print went into the silent auction and finally went to David Ellender, Global CEO of Fremantle Media who paid £1,100 for it.

Question. Where does your inspiration come from? How would you describe your own creative process?

Response. Inspiration comes from everywhere and great ideas pop into our heads quite randomly, although one of us is often scribbling away on a notepad at 3am. People often glamorise their inspirational process – watching the sun set whilst sitting on a remote beach in the Outer Hebrides – which sounds wonderful, but we’re a bit too busy to do that. I always carry a notebook in my handbag, and we get some super ideas after our Friday after work glass of wine in the pub!

Question. What new projects do you have coming up/planning for?


Response. We have a file of ideas for new collections and we’re only limited by time and money. Just time and money! We have grown Coulson Macleod organically right from the start. We’ve never invested a penny into the business, and only spend when we have money in the account to do so. We have heaps planned for 2011, but I’d better keep these secret. We do have a new stockist of our art, which I can talk about. Red Direct, the shopping directory of women’s magazine Red will be selling our art in their June issue. Our prints are already stocked in selective shops in Italy, Norway, and in the UK.

Question. Favourite store?

Response. Toast. They sell a dream lifestyle. Their catalogues are gorgeously styled. We also see similarities between ourselves and Jamie & Jessica Seaton {the founders of Toast}.

Image via here.

Question. Favourite websites and blogs?


Response. design*sponge, obviously. What Grace Bonney has achieved is impressive. Also look at The Sartorialist on a daily basis.

Question. Favourite magazine(s)?

Response. We buy copious amounts of magazines – interior design, art, culture – and can never bear to throw them out. So I could lie and say Wallpaper* or the The Creative Review to sound like we’re in touch with fellow creatives. Both of us adore Elle Decoration (we’ve been featured twice in Elle Decoration so of course we love them even more) but Grazia is my personal favourite and the one that I curl up on the sofa with.

Question. Where would you like to be in ten years?

Response. Doing pretty much what we’re doing now. We’ve never been happier. Coulson Macleod is our passion and we can’t imagine life without it. We love nurturing it and watching it grow. In ten years I’d expect it to be a name that is more recognised.

Question. Who are your heroes in real life?


Response. This is where I’m supposed to name an entrepreneur. I did personally know Dame Anita Roddick, and she is obviously inspirational to many people. But I have a thing for explorers. Sir Ranulph Fiennes is my number one hero. I’ve read all his books and I actually met him once and was able to listen to him telling his own stories. He signed a book for me and I could barely speak I was so in awe. The next day I saw him at the airport and so wanted to go up and chat, but couldn’t summon up the courage. I SO regret that now. I’ve also met Mark Shand, another explorer/travel writer, who was giving a talk. Again I’ve read his books and was too in awe to actually hold a sensible and intelligent conversation. I think I just stood there blushing!

Question. When and where were you happiest?

Response. Right now. I wouldn’t change a thing about my life. Sometimes people who don’t know me and are making small-talk ask me ‘what would be your dream job?’ and then look really surprised when I say I’m doing it. We not only enjoy running Coulson Macleod, but it’s successful too. And Mark & I love working together – it’s a great partnership where we bring very different skills into the business. Plus we’re getting married next year, so having heaps of fun planning our wedding.

Question. What would you consider your greatest achievement?

Response. Selling a piece of our art to one of the world’s leading collectors of contemporary art.

Question. What is it that you most dislike?

Response. Littering. I know it’s not up there with all the big ones, like sexism, racism, homophobia, etc. But if I see someone throw a bit of rubbish out of their car window it gets me so mad. I simply cannot fathom why someone would litter and make their own street, town, or park an eyesore.

How to learn more about Coulson Macleod and get in touch with them!




Phew! Amazing huh? Such a breath of fresh air – totally honest, unpretentious, just doing their thing! And doing is so damn well! Thanks so much to Hannah from Coulson Macleod!