A showcase of Australian Children's Book Illustrators who have appeared in the Industry Newsletter PASS IT ON
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
What's this illustration for?
‘Cat’s got your key’ was for an exhibition that I did at the end of last year.
Do you have to wait for a flash of inspiration - how do you start?
Usually no. Actually most of the time I don’t know what I’m going to draw until I’m drawing. If I am working to a brief I have it vaguely in my mind and I just start and see what my mind can muster. Because of this I end up with some misses and some hits. But when it works the outcome is often a surprise for me. If its not for a brief, say, for an exhibition, then I draw whatever comes out of my pencil. Sometimes its funny and sometimes its crazy and sometimes its very obviously about me and sometimes its a mystery.
Oh and I never start unless I’m holding a pacer. Very important.
How did you get your start as an illustrator?
Pure perseverance, and and the absolute assuredness that there is nothing else I want to do but draw. And draw. If I had to go to work in an office, um, I don’t know what I’d do but I wouldn’t go to work in an office.
Who or what has influenced your work?
Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake. The stories, the imagination, the funny crazy worlds that came to life and the illustrations that not only matched but colored these worlds. I love the simplicity and detail, and I love the warmth.
What's your favourite media for creating pictures?
Pencil, ink and acrylic.
Do you experience illustrator's block - if so, what do you do about it?
Not really but if I do I think I just draw something else, do something else, go somewhere else, then start again. Its not so bad.
What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?
There’s a bit of inconsistency in the workload. At times I have to stay awake past my meager bedtime to meet deadlines, and other times I nervously bite my nails (which is disgusting) in the silence of NO jobs. Sometimes I feel rich! And sometimes I feel like a Charles Dickens character eating gruel with dirt on my face. And also having to be responsible for everything. I call the accounts department about my pay and answer my own call. Boring.
And the best?
Everything else. It's my dream to draw and earn a living.