Illustrator Stacey Rozich works between Seattle and Los Angeles, but the saturated, charismatic, rascally characters in her artwork find a visual heritage within her textured inspirations from Eastern European folkloric motifs and mythologies. Her work is both challenging and delightful, and we knew it would be right at home in our shops. We wanted Stacey’s art to flow in and out of our shops easily, so we asked her to use an unexpected canvas – our compostable paper ice cream cups! We were so in love with her style that this eventually led to even more of Stacey's art in our shops: on our gift cards and custom tattoos!
We love Stacey’s work because it toys with figures that are bundled in a charm that's all her own, drawing from both heirloom, folkloric imagination and more contemporary concepts—think Bavarian beasts playing Flying V guitars, or coffee-drinking bears in Pendleton flannels nestled in a batik-esque background.
For her collaboration with Molly Moon's, Stacey took a cue from the ever-present, convivial community of ice cream lovers who queue up outside the Capitol Hill shop. "I had free reign to play around with certain aspects of Molly Moon's, which centered of course around ice cream, but more about the community of loyal fans,” Stacey says. “I used to live on Capitol Hill right on the Pike/Pine corridor, so the line around the block was a very familiar sight to walk by, and all of the different characters always stood out to me. Also the memory of the long-discontinued birthday cake flavor helped inspire me during this process — RIP, birthday cake!"
Her colorful company of creatures, from the puppy-walking bunny-headed gal pals in sundresses to the Seahawks jersey-sporting giraffe-bro, might remind you of a few familiar locals, but Stacey says that she doesn't design full-on personalities per character. Instead, she gives a nod towards different archetypes. “I'm a big fan of the trickster,” she says. “A lot of vignettes I create are centered around either some sort of mischief or mayhem. Mostly because destruction is just way more fun to paint—which, now that I think about it, is probably some latent desire I have to smash things and start fires in my own life!"
Or, maybe it's that same trickster that comes out when you decide you have ice cream for dinner! A little less mayhem, a little more milkshake—the trickster takes many playful forms in Stacey's colorful strokes, but for Molly Moon's, she'll keep the mischief to sneaking in a treat.
Editor’s Note: Our collaboration with Stacey is the first of many! In 2016, ice cream fans can expect to see a rotating gallery of art on their ice cream cups and other Molly Moon’s goodies three times a year. Stacey’s art will also appear on custom tattoos (temporary, that is) and gift cards this year. You can check out her work in our online shop.