I’m Allison Johnston, the hands, brain, and heart behind fuzzy grapefruit. I have always been obsessed with making things. When I was very little, I would make my own picture books by stapling together sheets of letterhead paper from my dad’s office. Years later, while I was getting my degree in graphic design, one of my sisters gave me a block of stamp carving rubber for Christmas. I quickly found myself falling in love with the idea of creating designs and imagery, using a more hands-on method than the computer would allow. During my senior year of college, I took an amazing bookbinding class and my interest in old-school art forms just kept growing.
fuzzy grapefruit is the result of my constantly-evolving fascination with new materials, my background in graphic design, my love of animals, nature, and a cheeky attitude, and my desire to just keep making. I sincerely hope that the work I create puts a smile on your face.
People frequently ask about the name, “fuzzy grapefruit”. I really wish I had a fun, whimsical story I could tell in response. The truth is I adore fuzzy creatures, I equally love citrus fruits (especially grapefruit), I grew up with a grapefruit tree in my front yard, I liked the sound of ‘fuzzy grapefruit’, and I liked the look of it written in cursive. And at the very moment I opened my online shop from my tiny Chicago apartment, I was almost certainly drinking grapefruit flavored LaCroix with a fuzzy cat curled up on my lap. So there you have it, the birth of a silly name.
My artistic interests are varied and my obsessions tend to ebb and flow, but I am always thematically driven by the things that bring me joy: sweet woodland creatures, talking food, animals in clothes, puns and witty sayings, geometric patterns, and the simple beauty of nature. I am currently making…
– block-printed notecards of original hand-carved designs
– original illustrations in gouache and ink
– digital archival art prints
– eco-friendly upcycled bookboard jewelry, illustrated with one of a kind designs