‘If it has anything to do with homes or gardens, I’m interested.’
Lead designer Barbara Caswell worked in California before relocating to London, accounting for an accent that doesn’t match that of her English grandparents. She spent 20 years as the site planner and project manager for innovative wildlife-friendly Haverfield Park in Sonoma County, winning the community’s best new residential award after a series of successful property renovations. Before that, she owned Designs of the Times, and originated the phenomenally popular Rocky the Range Chicken icon. Caswell is hands-on in every detail: lettering logos; planning landscapes; designing interiors and soft furnishings; even creating costumes for public events herself.
‘Working with people better than I am is the best,’ she says. ‘An ambitious project thrives with a team of talent. Artists each contribute their unique pieces, and I make sure all those scattered bits become pixels that compose a final picture. My focus now is finding commercial applications for British makers.’
Proposed designs are already being submitted to the Royal Mail, Waitrose Markets, the National Rail Museum, the Campaign for Wool, the Imperial War Museum and the National Trust.
Caswell is married to global content strategist Michael Alves. Their adult daughter was recently released to the wild.
Do Well By Doing Good
Caswell continues her tradition of integrity in the UK. Her favourite projects support Britain.
The CAMPAIGN FOR WOOL, London (proposal in progress)
The Challenge: Illustrate the connection between British wool and its ‘green and pleasant land’
Media: Sculpture, casting, 3D scanning, live plant material
The IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM, London (proposed)
The Challenge: Design new commercial products with Churchillian themes
Medium: Photoshopped concepts
The ROYAL MAIL, Telford, Shropshire (proposed)
The Challenge: Salute the vanishing traditions of the Royal Mail, including red pillar boxes, red vans and bicycles
Medium: Acrylic paintings. Giclee prints sold through Surrey Artists web site
The NATIONAL RAILWAY MUSEUM, Yorkshire (proposed)
The Challenge: Demonstrate applications for artwork owned by the museum
Medium: Photoshop illustrated panels for furniture and doors, licencing existing artwork
PAINSHILL PARK, Surrey (completed)
The Challenge: Contribute marketing and publicity ideas to help protect the future of this unique restored 18th century parkland, which is independent of the National Trust.
Medium: Written proposal
TOWER HAMLETS SCHOOLS LIBRARY SERVICES, London (completed)
1) Research and design authentic-looking ancient Egyptian costumes representing citizens of an ancient community.
2) Restore antique costumes originally created for the Italian Opera House in Covent Garden c.1900
Media: Fabric, costume jewelry, sewing
RIVERHILL PARK RESTORATION, Cobham, Surrey (completed)
The Challenge: Request Waitrose support for parkland restoration project
Media: Written proposal and Photoshopped concepts; wine labels
ST ANDREWS CHURCH, Cobham, Surrey (completed)
1) Design commemorative stone plaque appropriate to 12th century Norman tower for historic figure Gerrard Winstanley
2) Create a suite of logos for contemporary church programs, also adaptable to any forthcoming
Media: Scale drawings, digital graphics