TOP TEN: Nicky Ovitt

NickyOvittI was raised in a highly creative household of ideas and imagery. My mom was a curator at the Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, NM– where Alexander Girard’s magical collection of treasures from around the world had a strong influence on my aesthetic. I have a fondness for embellishment, outsider art, hex signs, symbology, and costume.

In the age before computer-aided design, I received a degree in Graphic Communications. Throughout my career, I have been very fortunate to expand upon my education and skills within a wide range of industries. Some past positions include: in-house designer at an award-winning design agency; art director at an alternative news weekly; and for a decade, the design department manager for a successful manufacturer of private label apparel and accessories. This last job was where I cut my teeth in manufacturing and recognized a love for creating artwork for fabric.

In the Fall of 2011 I resigned from this my in-house position and have since enjoyed many similar and satisfying freelance assignments– most notably active wear for Speedo youth. Some other past illustration clients include: Chronicle Books, Harper Collins, Levi’s, Macy’s and Smith & Hawken.

The common thread in all of my work has been the continual use of and development of my illustration style. My illustrations occupy a world of playful sophistication. Each motif is hand-drawn and inky, breezy and awash in color– instilled with a warm receptivity to the naïve. Inspirations come from my exploratory curiosity: art history, craft, and the inner worlds of my vintage storybook collection. I delight in the challenge of depicting a theme unexpectedly and presenting an illustrated interpretation that transcends the obvious firsts that come to mind.

I enjoy creating for private label in what I think of as different “voices,” while at the same time building upon my collection of inked illustration pattern collections for license. My plan for 2013 is to introduce my style to product manufacturers with a special focus on the sewing fabric market while continuing to evolve within the wide field of surface design.


Find Nicky Other Places Online:




Featured on Print and Pattern


Print made with daughter

Exquisite Corpse/FlicknMix Project

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9 comments on “TOP TEN: Nicky Ovitt

  1. Fantastic drawing, design and color sensibility. The only problem I have is choosing a favorite because I love all the collections.
    Thanks for sharing your evolution and goal for 2013. Well done!

  2. Nicky… there’s so much to know and learn from all your different and amazing experiences. Your work is gorgeous! I love how you work your motifs and your use of color. I’m so happy to be in this with you :)

  3. Beck Ng on said:

    Enjoyed reading your write up. You have had an amazing career this far and your design style is very create and unique. Can’t wait to see more :)

  4. Loving your illustration style!

  5. Holly Helgeson on said:

    Really love your design style Nicky!! And WOW…what a wonderful career! My daughter too is gaga about horses! She adores your fabric you did with your daughter! I love your passion and am so thrilled to see more of your work!

  6. Gorgeous! Fabulous patterns and love love your style!

  7. Jessica Majers on said:

    Great style. I adore the balloon design in particular- so sweet.

  8. Beautiful work! I am sure you will continue to succeed in your endeavor of the textile sewing field. I love the hidden quirks or images with subtle messages. Awesome!

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