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In 2017, we revealed two of our most vibrant labels yet; our Pure Kisume Gin and the second release of our Australian Christmas Gin. You all know the distiller behind the gin, now meet the Darren behind the labels.

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Darren is a craftsman, talented in both digital and handmade art forms. But his true creative passion lies in his stitched artwork, a venture he has been on for almost eight years now.

A Melbourne-based Design Director by trade, Darren's art was borne out of a need to do something creative after work hours. Something for the soul, away from the computer screen.

"I've always liked the idea of handmade... creating and building stuff. And I was trying to think of an outlet that I could manage freely, but also creatively.

I remembered during my university days in Melbourne, and even growing up in Singapore, trying to save money by stitching patterns and words onto leftover pieces of paper for friends' birthdays.

I enjoyed it so much, I would even hand-bind the pages of my assignments together for submission!

Hence came the idea to stitch my artwork onto paper instead of fabric I suppose."

Darren searches for vintage paper ephemera in antique stores and weekend flea markets: old postcards, book pages, people's discarded photographs. He says that stitching over these pieces feels like you're giving them new life.

"When Four Pillars requested a piece featuring a Christmas Beetle, I managed to hunt down a vintage print (after much searching) in the database at the State Library of Victoria.

The vivid tactile landscape on top of the beetle keeps it abstract. My idea is that the beetle embodies the spirit of Christmas, spreading jolly festive cheer while people enjoy the gin."

Darren's other magnificent creations can be viewed at his website here.

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