Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Michelle Dybing

1. What's this illustration for?

It was a personal piece I submitted to Illustration Friday (the word for that week was ‘grow’). It’s still a favourite of mine - I can see aspects of my children’s personalities within the faces behind the sunflowers.

2. Do you have to wait for a flash of inspiration - how do you start?

No flashes of inspiration for me - I have to think and plan. I will often look around for stimulation, maybe to an old drawing or a photo. My husband and children are good sources of ideas also. I brainstorm through sketches. When I’m happy with the sketches I will scan them into Illustrator and work on them digitally.

3. How did you get your start as an illustrator?

I remember just deciding one day that illustrating was something I wanted to do. So I set some goals, got some advice, took a few short courses and over a couple of years built up a portfolio. I joined Illustration Friday and submitted every week. I started a blog to post my work. There were many jobs done for ‘love’ before I was asked to illustrate my first book. It was all good experience; last year my persistence paid off and I was commissioned for another book, some magazine illustrations and a number of other small projects.

4. Who or what has influenced your work?

My mother used to paint beautiful houses and cottages in watercolor so I think I got the art bug from her. Now I find I am always collecting ideas and filing them away. I visit libraries regularly, collect old books, take photos and notes and visit art blogs. There is so much knowledge and expertise available to us now via the internet.

5. What's your favourite media for creating pictures?

My work is mainly digital. I use Adobe Illustrator for most of my illustrations. I am starting to experiment more with fabrics, textures and the inclusion of hand-drawn (non-digital) images.

6. Do you experience illustrator's block - if so, what do you do about it?

Yes I do - when it happens I clean my desk. Getting rid of the clutter and mess helps me to refocus and start again.

7. What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?

The challenge of finding work or having work find me, although this is not a big problem as I’m only doing this part-time. My work as a teacher is something that I also enjoy but illustrating provides a creative outlet for me.

8. And the best?

Being able to fit something I love into an already busy schedule and being able to work from home.

9. What are you working on at the moment?

I have submitted some illustrations to Image Zoo where they will be available for purchase. I have started experimenting with animations and I am looking forward to seeing what exciting projects the year will bring. I would love the opportunity to work on some more book/magazine projects this year.

10. Where can we see more of your work?

My blog continues innovativeillustration.com, although I don’t post as often as I used to. I’ve got some illustrations on the Illustrators Australia website and Image Zoo.

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