Fantastic Worlds by Illustrator Kate Pugsley


Kate Pugsley is an illustrator, painter and surface designer based in Chicago. Kate has a way with tone and shape reminiscent of the squiggles and bright cut-outs of Matisse, but with a glam, magical realist and decidedly contemporary edge. Having discovered her work on Instagram, where she posts snippets of patterns in progress, we’ve fallen for her simple yet captivating illustration style.

In recent years Kate has collaborated with a number of our favourite publications and organisations, from Frankie and Flow Magazine to Redcap Cards but she started out in Cleveland, where she grew up. Taking her creative leanings from Ohio to the Rhode Island School of Design, Kate studied for a BFA an Illustration, where she perfected her unique, tonal style.

Working with mainly gouache, acrylic and watercolours on paper, Kate’s work explores the interactions between animals, plants, human beings and objects from her home studio. We love her take on anything from cool, green underwater scenes to cute animals and frosty wildernesses explored by stylish mid-century women.

From magazine covers to books, editorials and even greetings cards, Kate’s illustrations allow the imagination to luxuriate in calm pastel scenes of paradise. Many of her works feature characters wrapped up in super-cool garb to keep out the cold – we’re feeling these pieces in particular at this time of year and taking a few illustrated style tips too.

So, if cold-weather fashion, smiling mermaids, wild jungle life and synchronised swimming sound like the sort of things you fancy, Kate’s work is likely to delight you. Browse her pieces and works for sale on Etsy, Kate’s website and at Sebastian Foster Gallery too.



Find more here



Words: Emily Beeson | @younggoldteeth