Wakefield First's Maker of the Month: Ellie Way: Designer and Printmaker

09 January 2024

Ellie Way is a printmaker and designer from Wakefield, who's visually striking work features around posters iconising locations across West Yorkshire. This includes numerous fantastic works based on Wakefield, including Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Nostell Priory, Newmillerdam and beyond.

Wakefield First got in touch with Ellie to find out all about her excellent work, working in Wakefield and what the future hold for her business.

"I am a Wakefield-based designer and printmaker whose practice is driven by placemaking. In 2020 I launched my first Travel Poster collection, illustrating the sights and scenes of Wakefield, and have been working on this business concept for West Yorkshire ever since. I have always been inspired by early 20th century Travel Posters, but during the pandemic - stuck at home with no holidays to look forward to - I was motivated to finally design my own Travel Poster collections and felt passionate about promoting what our region has to offer and celebrate the amazing places on our doorstep."

"I set up my studio at The Art House in 2018 because the studios were a great size and were affordable for me when I was starting out as a freelancer designer. There was also a print studio onsite which was very handy for me as a lot of my practice is driven by screen-printing. Since working in Wakefield, I have fallen in love with the creative community, everyone I have met so far is so supportive and encouraging of my practice and that’s very motivating for a freelancer!"

"In 2020 I worked on a project called ‘We Make Wakefield’ which was commissioned by Studio of Sanctuary. I designed an activity kit for children which included art materials and creative tasks to be completed at home or in the classroom. The activities encouraged children from different migrant backgrounds to think creatively about the places around them and to make some positive connections with Wakefield. I really enjoyed exploring my design concepts through a child’s perspective and the responses to the project were truly inspiring to me."

"I have just released my fourth Travel Poster collection and will be starting to develop the fifth early next year, illustrating the sights of Kirklees! In addition to that, I have been experimenting with some textile and ceramic designs with sights on eventually expanding my product collections. Hopefully there’ll also be some opportunities to work with new businesses and community groups on freelance projects which is something I always look forward to!"

To discover more of Ellie's impressive work, please visit her online shop and follow her social media channels: