Trained in fashion design and architecture, Meredith Wing stumbled upon her distinctive style of found-art designs on a layover during a trip with her husband. She got curious about the possibilities of the empty plastic squares of a package of Chiclets gum.
"To be silly, I made a drawing and we used it as a purse in the image," Wing says. "I posted this little 'gum purse' to Instagram and people really reacted to it. So I started doing found-objects drawing more often simply because it was quirky and I felt happy doing it!"
Wing has always expressed herself visually and, as a little girl, she was especially drawn to women in fancy dresses.
"I was obsessed with the Victorian-era style of corsets, refined lace and high necklines on women demurely carrying parasols. This became inspiration for the scenes I would draw, savoring every detail," she says. "The old Hollywood movies my dad would watch, featuring Golden Age goddesses like Ginger Rogers and Lauren Bacall, were similarly intoxicating."
She left Boston to study at Columbia University in New York City and later moved to Paris, and her interest in fashion grew. She worked for designers and fashion public relations agencies, always choosing to immerse herself in fashion.
Most of Wing's work is on her website and Instagram (@ moomooi), the main platform where she shares her work. Professionally, her art is used in fashion magazines and brands, as well as for logos, wedding invitations, personal portraits and other custom work. Now based in Sydney, Wing says she dreams of one day doing illustrations for children's books.
When creating one of her designs, sometimes the flower or other found object comes first and she'll draw around it. Sometimes, she'll make an illustration and figure out how to "dress it."
"Often I am just in the mood to do an illustration of a chic lady and then realize she needs some clothes!" she says. "Sometimes I see a flower, an orchid or a rose that’s really beautiful for its structure and think 'I have to make something out of that.'"
"I’ll lay it down on the paper and I’ll stare at it. I’ll draw around it, I’ll move it aside if I need to, then move it back, and see how it fits. I’ll do it in tandem," Wing explains. "The process can be as casual as having some vegetables in the fridge I am about to cook and deciding to do a little drawing before I gobble it up."
Wing's inspiration is nothing if not diverse. It might come from her refrigerator or from a fashion magazine.
"My mind’s constantly going. I never feel a shortage for ideas. I’m always ... devouring feeds like Instagram, Tumblr, books. I’m hypersensitive to all those things," she says. "I love Pinterest, fashion magazines, anything visual. Sometimes I’m inspired by a fashion advertisement, a fashion blogger’s outfit on Instagram, a certain flower arrangement … it comes from all different places."