Arts·Q&A

Flamingos, fish...and yes, those are tentacles wrapped around the CBC Arts July logo

Meet the illustrator, artist and children's book author Danielle Murrell Cox.

Meet the illustrator, artist and children's book author Danielle Murrell Cox

CBC Arts logo design by Danielle Murrell Cox. (Danielle Murrell Cox)

Every month, we feature a new take on the CBC Arts logo created by a Canadian artist. Check out our previous logos!

She's created toys and colouring books. And just the other week, she became a published children's author. (My Hair, published by Harper Collins, is now in stores.) But you're looking at Danielle Murrell Cox's most recent project: a black-and-white re-design of the CBC Arts logo. You'll find it splashed all over our social media accounts for the month of July — but first, get to know the artist.

(HarperCollins Canada)

Name: Danielle Murrell Cox

Age: 30

Homebase: Montreal

Congratulations on the release of My Hair! Why did you want to write a children's book?

Thank you! I'm so proud of this book. The happy and loving feedback I've received has been amazing! I'm so grateful that I was able to be a part of the joyous imagery of Black individuals, especially for the kiddos. 

I never thought I'd ever be an author, to be honest. It was never part of the "plan." This opportunity to be the author of a children's book was something that was a surprise, but it also made so much sense, because of my self-published books, 10+ years experience as a designer and the fact I've been illustrating my entire life. That combination, as well as the help of social media, shaped me into children's book author!

Let's talk about your design! What inspired your take on the CBC Arts logo?

To be honest, it's just an abstract representation of previous personal designs as well as a bit of where I am today as a designer/illustrator. We could say that this design is a great representation of my love for nature, as well as my current position in life — haha.

Flamingos, fish, flowers...and are those tentacles wrapped around the gem? Are they symbols for anything?

Yes! It's an abstract representation of nature, surrounding the moon. Nothing deep here, just a love for nature and the black-and-white aesthetic.

(@dmcmtlco/Instagram)

What had you originally planned to be doing this July? How is COVID-19 affecting your day-to-day life right now?

June was meant to be a big celebration of my book release and 30th birthday. July was meant to be recuperation from the previous month, as well as getting back into a summer schedule for my freelance work as a designer. With COVID, a LOT has changed. The celebrations happened at home, rather than in my studio space, and my freelancing schedule has made a complete 180 as I've now made a shift in my "plan." I will be focusing on working on and creating more art and products that help show Black individuals in a positive way, rather than working as a freelancer. 

I've essentially changed my whole business model, and decided to focus on what I love and truly enjoy. It's very exciting but also terrifying. But the scary choices we make always end up being worth it in the end.

Who are the last artists you discovered online?

Antoinette Thomas and Nikkolas Smith.

What work of art do you wish you owned?

I was lucky enough to see one of KAWS's ginormous art installations at the Hamad International Airport in Qatar in 2018. It's 32 feet tall, so it's not something that would actually fit in my home, BUT it would be amazing to call that my own, as a fan of his work.

(@dmcmtlco/Instagram)

This conversation has been edited and condensed.

To see more from Danielle Murrell Cox, visit her website and follow her on Instagram and Twitter (@dmcmtlco). 

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