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FAQs

 

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO BE AN ILLUSTRATOR?

 

Drawing has always been a hobby of mine since I could first hold a pencil, and then when I got older and the question of what do I want to do for a living became more important I decided to go and study illustration, without really knowing what I would do after. I always knew that I definitely did NOT want to own my own business, it sounded super complicated and far too much work and stress! Then I found a genre of Youtube videos made by illustrators showing different aspects of the job including what the daily life of an illustrator looks like and it really appealed to me. Of course these videos are often edited and slightly romanticized but the general idea is the same. We get to work from the comfort of our homes, doing what we love which is pretty nice. Now that I’m a new mum, I feel so lucky to have that flexibility, and painting has become a form of self care for me in my very busy day.

 

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A WORKING ARTIST? HOW ARE YOU FINDING LIFE AS A FREELANCE ILLUSTRATOR?

 

I officially registered myself as self-employed in November 2018 when I was in my second year at university, but I've only been working full-time since June of 2020. It’s gone so fast but I’m learning a lot. Being a freelance illustrator has its ups and downs like any other job, and I’m still learning to balance my work and life, as well as stick to some kind of schedule. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed with all the responsibility I have put on myself, but at the same time I love the freedom that comes with being my own boss. There’s something very satisfying about creating a brand from the ground up and watching it grow.

DID YOU STUDY ILLUSTRATION? IF SO, WHAT WAS IT LIKE?

Yes. I studied Illustration and Visual Communication at the University of Westminster and graduated in 2020 with a first class honours. My experience was very mixed. I think I’ll have more clarity on it in a few years when I’m in a different place in my life, but I will say that I definitely struggled with feeling uncertain whether or not it was the right place for me. I felt like I had other dreams I’d rather be doing - like traveling for example, and because of that I often failed to live in the present. On the other hand, I met some amazing friends, had experiences that I otherwise wouldn’t have had and grew a lot as a person. As I moved into the next chapter of my life, I felt like I had more solid ideas about what I want from my career and also just from life in general.

WHERE ARE YOU FROM AND HOW HAS IT INFLUENCED YOUR WORK?

 

I grew up in the North East of England in a tiny village in the Pennines. My younger sister and I often played outside and that early connection to the countryside definitely helped me to grow a deep appreciation for the natural world.  My work now features lots of plants and flowers which may have something to do with those lovely childhood memories.

 

WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR INSPIRATION?

 

If I'm being totally, I get a lot of my inspiration online which is not a good thing. Not to say there aren't good sources on the internet but I really want to work on widening my sources of inspiration. I'm blessed to live in a really beautiful and interesting country and I think my work would definitely benefit from me getting out more and getting fresh ideas. 

 

WHAT'S YOUR PROCESS?

 

I’m a very impatient person so it took me a long time to accept that there was a process that had to come before I could create a piece of work. I used to rush straight into the final piece with no preparation or development but that  often led me to waste time and feel frustrated because I was never satisfied with the outcome. My process now is very simple but each step is important. Once I know what I want to illustrate, I make lots of rough thumbnail sketches to get the composition right. This can take a while but it’s worth sorting out the details at this stage. Then I choose my favourite design and develop the details in the size I want it to be. I use my laptop to trace a faint outline and then start painting with gouache. Some people think my work is made digitally but in fact every piece is hand-painted and just edited slightly in Photoshop. I love to have a cup of tea and some music or podcasts in the background to set the mood.

 

DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING FOR SALE?

 

Yes! I have an Etsy shop with greetings cards, prints, originals and other bits for sale. I’m constantly updating it and adding more products. 

WHAT ARE YOUR CAREER GOALS?

 

My main goal is to have illustration be my full-time career. I also want to try lots of different jobs within the illustration world. Here are just a few:

 

  • Paint a public mural

  • Have a book that I illustrated be published

  • Create more variety of products for my shop

  • Make video content around the topic of illustration 

  • Host a workshop

 

WHAT ARE YOUR INTERESTS OUTSIDE OF ILLUSTRATION?

 

I love spending time with my family, baking cakes, reading, going for walks, cooking, traveling and watching movies. As a child I was really into ballet and playing the piano. 

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AWARDS

08/07/20

D&AD New Blood 

One to Watch

WINNER

01/11/18

Westminster Pop Up Competition

WINNER

EVENTS

21/09/19

22/09/19

Art Eat Festival

Ipswich Waterfront

Neptune Quay

Ipswich

IP4 1QJ

 

11am - 7:30pm

17/08/19

Allendale Agricultural Show

The Showfield

Riding Haughs

Allendale

NE47 9EE

 

9am - 4pm

06/07/19

Hexham Cake Fest

Gilesgate 

Hexham

NE46 3NP

 

11am - 4pm

09/12/18 - 15/12/18

Westminster Pop Up Shop

67 York Street,

London,

W1H 1QB

10am-7pm

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