Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Margaret Power PIO issue 307 September 2010

  1. What's this illustration for? 
The illustration is for the cover art of Oliver's Egg.

  1. Do you have to wait for a flash of inspiration - how do you start?
Inspiration always starts with the word pictures in the text.

  1. How did you get your start as an illustrator?
A friend who was a year ahead of me at art school took my folio around to various advertising agencies & after a 4 yr course at RMIT found myself walking straight into employment in one of the said agencies!

  1. Who or what has influenced your work? 
The fashion illustrators of the day in London and New York.

  1. What's your favourite media for creating pictures?
Mixed media for my book illustrations.

  1. Do you experience illustrator's block - if so, what do you do about it?
That is rare thank goodness, but I usually down pencils and go off and do something' totally else ' or get the vacuum cleaner out!

  1. What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?
Constantly being aware of income.

  1. And the best?
To sit at my drawing board 'colouring in ' and listening to audio books, nothing is more wonderful!

  1. What are you working on at the moment?
I am working on a portrait commission [which I do quite a bit of]

  1. Where can we see more of your work?
In libraries and on ASA Style File at the moment.

Sebastian Ciaffaglione PIO issue 306 September 2010


What's this illustration for?

This is an illustration I did for Flame Stands Waiting, a picture book written by Corinne Fenton, published by Black Dog Books.


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

Well inspiration does strike, and it’s really great when it happens. I find myself drawing much faster with better images better produced. Unfortunately you can’t always count on being inspired, sometimes a deadline will be looming or a project may have lost some of the appeal it once had and i find myself having to rely on discipline and self motivation.

Usually the beginning of a project is the most inspiring time for me. Which is great because the beginning is when you need to produce all your concepts. I usually start by reading the source material or the brief, and then sketching out anything that comes to mind. Sometimes i think of an artist i love that does work in a similar vein to the brief i am working on and i will spend some time going through thier body of work for inspiration.


How did you get your start as an illustrator?

Well the first project I’d ever done was a book cover. The publisher had seen some of my student work and contacted me about doing some work for them. As is always the case, the work lead to more work, which has lead to more work again. I think getting the initial exposure as an artist is the hardest part, once you have a bit of work out there then its much easier to get more work.


Who or what has influenced your work?

There are so many artists that I love and who influence me that it would take many pages to list them all. Like most everybody I am influenced by my life, by movies that I love, comics that i read and my goals as an artist.


What's your favourite media for creating pictures?

That is a tough question. My favourite media for finishing a brief is definitely digital. I can experiment much more boldly, I can sketch and paint much more quickly and I can deliver work to clients much more easily.

However the most satisfaction that I feel is definitely when I have finished a traditional oil or acrylic painting. When I can sit back and look at it right in front of me. I can hold it and smell the paint. There is something really satisfying about that.


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

Sometimes a job is very hard to get into. Even if I have some really potent ideas, sometimes my hands don’t want to co-operate and my sketches just come out looking pretty bad.

The trick for me is not to get too precious. Not to start heavily doubting myself and convincing myself that I’ve somehow LOST the ability to draw. it’s important to recognize when i am having trouble, so i can tell myself to just 'draw through' the block. Eventually my sketches will start to improve and i can get back on track.

I read somewhere that every artist has a thousand poor drawings inside them and the sooner you get them out, the better. I think of that sometimes when I am not feeling like my work is the best.


What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?

The worst thing is not knowing what will be happening down the track. Right now I am completely flushed with work. It’s great; I have one project after the other to do. but what about January next year? I have absolutely no idea what I will be doing then, I don’t even know if people will still be giving me work. That is easily the worst part. Who knows how things will ebb and flow in the future. That uncertainty that you get as a freelancer can be scary.

And the best?

There are a few things that are really awesome about being a freelance artist. I can set my own hours, if i feel like doing work at 4am i can. Working from a home studio is also really great, I don’t have to worry about my workspace messiness offending any other employees, I can listen to music as loud as I want, that sort of thing. It’s a sense of freedom, of being my own boss.

The very best part of being an artist is getting paid to draw. I remember finishing a piece of work, it was a giant T-rex skeleton being ridden by a medieval warrior. I remember finishing that and sitting back and thinking, I cannot believe someone is paying me to do this!


What are you working on at the moment?

At the moment i am working on a batch of book covers and a whole mess of black and white interior illustrations for various publishers. The most exciting thing I am working on is a proposal for a graphic novel. A writer friend of mine named Earl Leonard approached me with a really amazing idea and we are putting together a package to pitch to publishers, it is just a lot of fun to be working on.


Where can we see more of your work?

You can visit my website at www.sebastiancreative.com or my art blog  www.sebastiancreative.blogspot.com

Frané Lessac PIO issue 305 August 2010


What’s this illustration for?

Our new book “Ned Kelly and the Green Sash”. I have a favourite piece in every book and this is mine from Ned.  Henry Miller once said, “Paint as you like and die happy”. The composition, colour and subject matter of this piece sums it all up for me.


Who or what has influenced your work?

I especially love this Illustration because it’s influenced by all the great artists who I admire. First off, Sidney Nolan was my constant muse when creating Ned.  We can see Ned floating between a Marc Chagall painting or perhaps reclining as in Henri Rousseau’s The Sleeping Gypsy. The palette of Henri Matisse is prevalent as is the flatness of colour by Paul Gauguin.


 Do you have to wait for a flash of inspiration - how do you start?
  I have a highly visual imagination when I read a story. What I’ve learnt over the years is to sketch my first impulse, but then explore how many different ways I could draw the same scene. At the recent Bologna Children’s Book Fair, I was asked to illustrate in public while the author of my next book read the story aloud.  I had to create a page plan live while attendees stopped to watch.  Talk about inspiration and pressure!

 How did you get your start as an illustrator?
  Luckily, my high school art teacher thought I was completely hopeless when he couldn’t teach me perspective, so he left me alone. My school wasn't progressive enough to recognize primitive painting as a legitimate art form. Later on I moved to the small Caribbean island of Montserrat where I began my career as a painter. My good friend on the island was an aspiring journalist named Shona Martyn who had a column in the weekly paper, The Montserrat Times. She interviewed me and asked what I’d like to do next.  The power of the spoken word because I said, I would love to write and illustrate a children’s book.  I wrote a story entitled “My Little Island” and went to see 20 publishers over the course of a year. Macmillan, who had a successful Caribbean division, eventually published the book in England and the West Indies. The following year HarperCollins released it in USA. The book is still in print twenty-seven years later and Shona Martyn went on to her own success.


What’s your favourite media for creating pictures?

I’m loyal to Windsor and Newton gouache on Arches paper for illustration. I can get a range of depth from flat opaqueness of colour to a wash. They dry really fast, come in any colour and they’re non-toxic, important as my cat likes to drink my paint water. If I’m painting for an exhibition, I tend to work very large in oils.


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

I love illustrators’ block. I go shopping and play with my friends and after a few days I feel so guilty, that I just need to get back to work.


What’s the worst thing about being a freelancer?

Zero zip nada nothing. I feel blessed and appreciate every moment.


And the best?

Taking a break when I want and picking projects I adore.


What are you working on at the moment?

I’m currently creating the preliminary art for “The Drummer Boy of John John” that will be published by Lee and Low in the
US. The book is inspired by Winston "Spree" Simon; at the age of seven he was a drummer in a steelpan group called the John John band. He made ‘noise’ and began playing melodies on empty biscuit containers during Carnival celebrations. The proud villagers of John John, Trinidad believe that he was the first person to play the steel drum.

 Where  can we see more of your work?

Here’s my website:
http://www.franelessac.com <http://www.franelessac.com>
Latest YouTube on creating art for “Ned Kelly and the Green Sash” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNdFLMzaqeM

John Petropoulos PIO issue 304 August 2010

What's this  illustration for?

This is the cover image and text for “Plato”. I’ve included this because I am really quite pleased with the energy, movement and colours, and of course because I am very very proud of my daughter Cassandra’s contribution of hand written type. Plato here has a childlike quality, an exhuberance that really appeals to me, making this one of my favourite illustrations in the book.


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

To an extent. I find that whilst waiting for inspiration, it really helps to sketch. Plato and
Zanzibar evolved through several sketchbooks and scraps of paper. The inspiration element kicks in when you stand back and survey these, and it suddenly comes together. No amount of just sitting and thinking will get you there. I find I need to “think” with my hand.


How did you get your start as an  illustrator?  

I used to co-write and co0illustrate a comic strip in the student newspaper at uni with a very good friend called Mark Sexton. After graduation, we continued publishing the series as “Bug & Stump”, which ran for nine issues. Illustration work began to appear as a direct result of this. As for illustrating as such, I can’t remember not drawing. I have always been a scribbler.


Who or what has influenced your  work?  

I’ve a comic history, so needless to say that the entire genre has influenced my style. This is by means the only influence. Children’s book illustrators as diverse as Maurice Sendak, Shelagh McNicholas, Kerry Argent have all made an impression on me.


What's your  favourite media for creating pictures?  

I’m a mixed media kinda guy. I spend a lot of time in front of a computer during the day (full time graphic designer) and as such am very comfortable with Photoshop. In terms of actual real world drawing, I’m most at home with pencils.


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

Ooooohh yes! It’s horrible! There are times when nothing works, no ideas come, and days when every line is wrong, and I just can’t draw anything! When this happens, I’ll step away for a bit, maybe read a book or take  my girls to the park or do some other work. But I’ll return and persevere, and usually my hand and brain start talking to each other again.


What's the  worst thing about being a freelancer?  

Deadlines are usually very tight. I’m often up at
4am working on an illustration, and unfortunately at that time of night everything takes twice as long. That and doing business stuff like invoicing and bill collecting (blech!).


And the  best?  

I draw and get paid for it! How cool is that?


What are you  working on at the moment?  

I’m fleshing out a children’s book concept which I hope to take to a publisher. It’s based on a bedtime story I made up on the spot for my daughters. I’d rather not go into too much detail, except to say that my girls got a real kick out of it.
Where can we  see more of your work?

I’m a member of Illustrators Australia and my profile includes some of my work www.illustratorsaustralia.com . In the real world out there, I have recently done the design and illustration for the Antipodes Festival (Londsdale St Festival, Melbourne).

Dave Charlton PIO issue 303 August 2010

What's this illustration for?

This illustration was for the front page of my website. I wanted to highlight cartoon character creation, but at the same time show that I could draw a wide range of different objects in a more detailed style. I also wanted a mix of black and white and colour art to show I was capable of both.

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

In this case I just felt like drawing a “mad scientists” laboratory. I searched through my comics and art books and the internet sketching rough ideas like Frankenstein’s monster, Igor, giant body vats, candles, chemicals, shackles, etc... I then created some cartoon animals for it and the rest developed from there.

How did you get your start as an illustrator?

It was all thanks to Peta Burns, a Brisbane based Graphic Designer. She suggested it and spent a lot of time helping me to set up a portfolio, mail out a great looking resume and also introduced me to people in the advertising industry.

Who or what has influenced your work?

My main influences have been comic book artists and cartoonists. I grew up reading my Dad’s shelves of comic books in the toilet, Calvin and Hobbes, Peanuts, Giles, BC and more. Albert Uderzo’s Asterix was also a big part of my childhood. I grew to love graphic novels and cartoons. Simon Bisley, Frank Cho, Preston Blair, Chris Wahl, Geoff Darrow, Paul Kidby, Burne Hogarth, Mike Mignola, David Pope, Shaun Tan and many, many others have all had a great influence on me.

What's your favourite media for creating pictures?

Photoshop. These days I usually draw straight on the computer using a Wacom graphics tablet. If I am ever stuck with how to do something there are always tutorials on the internet.

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

Yes, but I overcome it by looking at the work of other artists. Usually it depresses me for a short time, seeing how brilliant they are, but then I put on some good music, have a cup of coffee and I’m inspired to draw again.

What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?

Periods of no work at all, followed closely by having to complete three or more jobs at once. But it’s not that bad. If I have no paid work I get the time to draw for myself, or friends.

And the best?

The range of different subjects and styles. Always having new problems to solve and the challenge this gives my drawing skills. I am constantly learning and improving.

What are you working on at the moment?

I have just finished some illustrations for a history book, now I’m working on some T-shirt designs and my webcomic.

Where can we see more of your work?

Annie White PIO issue 302 August 302


  1. What's this illustration for?  
This illustration is for a book called Mbobo Tree, written by Glenda Millard and published by Scholastic.

It is about a tree that gives life to its village and a little girl who is found swinging from its branches in a sling made from mattress ticking.

Tiranamba, as she is called never speaks a word until one day the tree is threatened, she finds her voice and her bravery saves the village.

This illustration shows Tiranamba dancing with the villagers who were not troubled by her silence, but believed she would speak when she had something important to say.

  1. Do you have to wait for a flash of inspiration - how do you start?
I start a book by finding a quiet space and reading the text, taking note of the immediate images that spring to mind. They are usually the best ones.

  1. How did you get your start as an illustrator?
My first illustration job was making handmade cards for a local gallery when I was in high school. While I was at art school, I illustrated a series of cards for a commercial card company and worked for a publisher in Queensland.

  1. Who or what has influenced your work? 
I have enjoyed reading fabulous children's books like Alice in Wonderland, the Magic Faraway Tree and all the A.A. Milne stories and admired great artists like Daumier, Mucha and Rockwell.

Listening to great music, reading image-making stories and just being out amongst it all influences my work.

  1. What's your favourite media for creating pictures?
I mainly use water colour.

  1. Do you experience illustrator's block - if so, what do you do about it?
Sometimes an idea isn't ready to come straight away, so I move on to another part of the project where ideas have already formed.

  1. What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?
The unpredictability of the workload.

  1. And the best?
Drawing and painting for a living.

  1. Where can we see more of your work?
On my website: www.anniewhite.com  

Gillian Warden PIO issue 301 August 2010

What's this illustration for?

The current purpose of this recent painting is to convince me that I can produce good work. It also serves to remind me that (my) good work requires a significant parcel of time.

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

I collect reference images to collage loose compositions that I then I paint. The picture evolves as the painting process and mark making inspire original ideas.

How did you get your start as an illustrator?

I studied Graphic Design after finishing school and have since worked as a Designer/Illustrator. I began painting during the early 90's economic recession when there wasn't a lot of paid work available. My pictures suit a story and so attract Publishers and Writers.

Who or what has influenced your work?

I am very attracted to theatrical themes and the accompanying elements of costume and light. I am inspired by the images created through circus theatre and I often reference companies like Lunar Circus, Bizerkus, Cirque Du Soleil, Contemporary Clowning Projects and Circus Oz.

What's your favourite media for creating pictures?

I am totally addicted to Oil Paint.

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

'Creative block' crippled 2009 for me and I eventually cancelled my annual exhibition. I travelled to New York City and spent a few weeks visiting galleries looking for a single work to move and inspire me. I didn't find it! Back in the studio I am now trying to implement the play/work ethic and not think of the deadline. I realise I am engaged in some kind of creative transition, a crisis of sorts and this year I've decided it's interesting...

What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?

In my experience there is no worse thing about being a freelancer, I count myself lucky.

And the best?

Generally speaking, my time is my own.

What are you working on at the moment?

An exhibition of paintings scheduled for October 20 at Jackman Gallery in Melbourne 2010

Where can we see more of your work?

Christian Bocquee PIO issue 300 July 2010

What's this illustration for?
This is a personal piece. I like to observe people when I'm out and about, and this was one particular person that really sparked my interest. He was a street evangelist, and I was drawn to what I saw as a contradiction between his charming and gentle face, and the message of "fire and brimstone" and "eternal punishment" that is often somewhere in the message. I didn't have my sketchbook on me at the time, but I felt my later sketches from memory captured something of this man's character. I needed something to practice my digital painting, so I decided to finish it off digitally as you see here.

Do you have to wait for a flash of inspiration - how do you start?
Sometimes inspiration comes in a flash, but I don't wait for it. For commissioned projects my process usually involves looking at lots of photos, and researching my subject. Then I'll put away the reference, and do lots of quick sketches trying to combine the research with something personal. It might only be a really quick squiggle, but eventually something will jump out at me. At that point I'll flesh it out into something more concrete, and then start refining it.

How did you get your start as an illustrator?
It's been gradual. I couldn't pick out one project as being my big break. It's been a succession of progressively bigger projects, beginning with stuff that didn't seem like it would ever lead anywhere. I wouldn't say work is stable yet, but there is definite progress, and I'm optimistic.

Who or what has influenced your work?
In terms of subject matter, Ronald Searle helped open my eyes to the everyday. I really admire his ability to distill ordinary people, things, and places to their essence. I also enjoy some fantasy. Hayao Miyazaki is wonderful at portraying the fantasies of childhood. In terms of technique, my list of influences would include too long a list of artists to print here. I'm also not sure that I have a distinct style, so it's hard to say what has influenced me.

What's your favourite media for creating pictures?
For colour work, I'm most comfortable with digital painting programs like Gimp but I always start with paper and a pen or pencil. The computer is very forgiving, it allows me to make drastic changes, and then go back if I don't like it. With the computer I can work in a non-linear fashion. The computer also gives me a lot more control over colour. I can quickly bring the whole piece into a unifed colour and value relationship. This is a lot harder with traditional media. You kind of have to get it right first go, and work very methodically to an established process.

Do you experience illustrator's block - if so, what do you do about it?
For commissions, generally no, since there is no time to get stuck. You just keep pushing and a solution turns up. Deadlines are kind of good in this way, you are forced to finish things even if the solution is not "ideal". But for personal work, I certainly get block from time to time. I think the best way to overcome that is just to relax and enjoy drawing, look at lot of other people's work, or just do something completely unrelated to art for a while.

What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?
At this stage I'd say the uncertainty. But I think ultimately, once you're established freelancing can be more stable and secure than working at a studio for an employer. That's what I've heard anyway, and I'm hoping it's the case.

And the best?
Being able to work to my own schedule is of course nice, but I think the variety of projects is the best aspect of freelancing. It gives you the opportunity to really find your niche, and experiment a lot. I'm discovering that things I thought I would like to do, are not as much fun as some other things I never expected to do.

What are you working on at the moment?
I'm working with a long term client developing a cartoon series. This involves mostly character concept art, but I've also done storyboarding on this project.

Where can we see more of your work?
I have work on a few different web sites, but the best place at present would be on my blog, www.cbocquee.blogspot.com

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Nigel Buchanan PIO issue 299 July 2010



What's this illustration for?

Three people who spent time at Fabrica (the United Colors of Benetton's communication research centre) based in Treviso, Italy, came back to Australia and were inspired to start http://australiaproject.com. Each participant was asked to make a visual statement about the Australian culture. I wrote this text to accompany the image;

The size of new Australian houses is four times bigger than those in Europe. There is a waiting list for locally built V8 cars. Australian children are among the most obese in the world. Meanwhile the effects of rampant consumption are starting to manifest in global warming and unstable weather patterns. The question has to be asked; when will we start moderating our consumptive cultural tendencies? 


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

Well, nearly all of my work is for editorial publishing, so there is a text to work from in most cases. Some times there is a brief synopsis of the article if it is still being written. The intro and conclusions are the best place to start; they usually have the essence of the story in there somewhere. Writers use metaphors liberally so theses are always worth considering for a visual interpretation.


How did you get your start as an illustrator?

I realised at an early age that this is what I do. I studied in New Zealand at a very intensive course, and have freelanced almost from the time of graduation.


Who or what has influenced your work?
Influences change over time. At present I am loving the strong colours and simple but beautifully designed images of 30s and 40s advertising posters.


What's your favourite media for creating pictures?

After years struggling with an airbrush I now have grown to love Photoshop. I always do preparatory drawings and scan them as a template. The computer is the rendering tool and all the design and planning is pencil on paper.

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

It's more I have days when I just can't draw. I ride to the beach and back. Then I re read the words and see what happens.

What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?

Can't think of anything.

And the best?

Being able to say no to some jobs. Being able to steer your career to some extent. Being able to ride to the beach if you can't draw that day. Being the master of your own destiny. being able to draw pictures for a living, and lets face it that can usually only happen as a freelancer.

What are you working on at the moment?

Small filler illos for readers Digest, an ongoing commission. A full page illo for the Federal reserve bank magazine in the US. On going work for Screen Australia. A cover for the NSW Law Journal. A children's book.

Where can we see more of your work?

http://www.nigelbuchanan.com/
 There is a blog which I try to keep up to date there too.

Janette Hanrahan PIO issue 298 July 2010


  1. What's this illustration for?  
This illustration was for a charity exhibition to support The Bone Marrow Institute fundraiser for children & adults with leukaemia & other cancers.
  1. Do you have to wait for a flash of inspiration - how do you start?
No, I don't wait for a flash of inspiration, but I am always thinking of new ideas (even in the middle of the night ) & sometimes if I feel emotionally moved by an event, then I will express it in an artwork. In 2003, my linocut print `The Faceless Women of Afghanistan' was a finalist in The Blake Prize & selected to tour nationally.
  1. How did you get your start as an illustrator?
I have been an artist for over 30 years, exhibiting in Australia & overseas & have had several solo exhibitions & won awards. However, in 1998, I was asked to do the cover for a Poetry & Prose book & I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge & felt that my work was suited to the book form. Having always loved children's books & their illustrations, I look forward to the opportunity to work in this area.
  1. Who or what has influenced your work? 
My work has been influenced by my environment, living on a farm in regional NSW & by several outback camping trips to the Northern Territory. The techniques of Japanese woodcut printmakers, such as Shiko Munakata, continue to inspire me. I have an eclectic taste for all art forms, appreciating creativity, texture & form. I never stop learning !
  1. What's your favourite media for creating pictures?
My favourite media for creating pictures is linocut or woodblock printmaking, but I also love watercolour & gouache.
  1. Do you experience illustrator's block - if so, what do you do about it?
I only experience illustrator's block if I am not in the right frame of mind or if too tired. If so, I take a break, visit a gallery or bookshop & switch off & try to think laterally.
  1. What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?
The worst thing about being a freelancer is having the ideas & enthusiasm & waiting to be discovered.
  1. And the best?
The best is the solitude, being able to absorb myself in creative pursuit - pure bliss.
  1. What are you working on at the moment?
I am working on several woodcuts for a group exhibition in Japan in 2010.
  1. Where can we see more of your work?

Lachlan Creagh PIO issue 297 July 2010





What's this illustration for?

This illustration is I guess for my son Oscar- because the boy in it looks a bit like him(or looked like him-he’s grown a bit in 6 months- but also Oscar doesn't have the hat- has a red winter sleeping bag thing that’s a bit like the wizardy coat he has there in the picture). It was during one of those periods where I try to generate a lot of ideas and base drawings/thumbnails for images.
It’s yet to be coloured, but I quite like it as black and white.

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

I find if I starve my brain of distraction, it starts generating ideas (because it then has to generate its own entertainment).
For me growing things from the idea is crucial. Generally if I plan to do my own work /ideas- I'll spend a half day looking at art books and reference books, anatomy- basically art cramming trying to memorize/remind myself of all the details to pay attention to when i draw a particular thing (mind you I don't know what at this stage so I try to cover anything that interests me). Then I put everything away and start. Often putting on evocative music is good at the start to get fired up.


How did you get your start as an illustrator?

I'm pretty much self taught. (I grew up in Townsville where a coconut with a sunset painted on it was regarded as art.)
I was given a book when I was 6 called "The Complete book of Drawing and Painting" by Hugh Laidman-that guy could really draw and looking at it now I can see how the drawing in that one book affected me (even to my taste in women I suspect). I suppose other childhood influences would be Asterix, Richard Scarry, Brian Wildsmith and Ronald Searle, Jules Feiffer- but I'm not sure how much of that manifests itself.

Who or what has influenced your work?

In terms of artists I admire there are many, including the usual ones you might suspect (Klimt,Schiele, Ingres, Mucha, Singer Sargent, Rackham, Rockwell) but also slightly more modern people like Yoshitaka Amano, Brom ,Katsuya Terada and Juan Gimenez for example. I also quite like Shaun Tan and Ashley wood as Australian creative role models, and James Jean as a foreign one.


What's your favourite media for creating pictures?

For ideas a pencil or a ballpoint is fine. I tend to use my Cintiq tablet and photoshop. Initially when I bought the Cintiq I stopped drawing with pencil because I couldn't bear the thought of an expensive piece of equipment lying idle,- that’s worn off now and I'm back using a ballpoint pen of all things (when not doing 'work' work )

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

Actually I find certain restrictions/limitations imposed force you to think creatively to find a solution, and help you narrow the solution space as it were. The problem tends to be more how to stage it or fit it on a page.

Bike riding is good because of the stimulation of exercise and the lack of mental stimulation- so your mind can wander (except of course those bits where trying not to be killed by traffic has your attention.)

 I've cut and pasted some notes to myself at the end (originally for a talk).


What's the worst thing about being a freelancer?

Isolation, plus I've recently found that illustration is not actually regarded as art but as a trade - like a plumber or a house painter, except clearly there is a financial and work hours gulf between the illustration 'trade' and the plumbers.
I guess for me after years for working "for the man" it’s a slower than expected process of finding out where myself and my work ought to be.


And the best?

At this early stage,- being at home to see my kids first years- I know now that I missed quite a bit of the first year and a half of our first child when I was working in computer games. Creatively and long term art career wise I think it’s the only way to go.


What are you working on at the moment?

Primarily on a series called "Little Mates" for Scholastic, (but also some personal projects, and refurbishing my website and blog, working on t-shirts....the list goes on. On the "to do list" was a plan of entering the Waterhouse prize this year and using work for that for a book on Australian Dinosaurs...we'll see).
I'm currently looking for new projects and work though.


Where can we see more of your work?


I'm listed on the Style File and Illustrators Australia, and the American SCWBI (but not on the Australian).
My blog, which is fairly frequently updated http://lach-land.blogspot.com/
and website  http://lach-land.com/ (which currently needs updating)