Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Jess Racklyeft PIO issue 466 Nov 2013

Please describe your chosen illustration

~What medium did you use? This was created with watercolours and ink, simple!

~How long did it take? A few hours, with a bit of design thinking and brainstorming before.

~What is it for? It is for a card company, Nuovo.

When did you know you had a talent for illustration?

~How old were you? I have always tinkered with illustration, encouraged by a mum who would sprawl arts and crafts materials on a big table most days for us.

~How did you know? I remember that age old question, “what do you want to be when you grow up?” when I was 12. I was sure I wanted to be a children’s book illustrator – this got swayed over the years (always illustrating, but not always pursuing the dream!), but I am back on track 20 years later. I’m now working as a freelancer with lots and lots of projects on… creating portraits for families, working on some book projects, creating illustrations for a card company, creating work for markets and retail - mainly when my one year old is sleeping during the day and at night!

Have you ever studied your craft at an institution of any sort?

I’ve mainly studied elements of communications and ideas through tertiary studies (Mass Communications degree, and Award School). I have since been upping my drawing skills through short courses in design and painting. I think I have gained a lot of practical skills and understanding of the children’s book industry through working in publishing houses for the last 10 years or so.

What computer programmes do you use?

I love working with Photoshop, Illustrator and inDesign although I mainly create work with pen, watercolours and paper first, doing the final tinkering stages on the computer.

Have you illustrated any books?

I have completed several book projects directly with authors self-publishing.

~How are you usually commissioned? What is the process?
Some books have been commissioned after they have stumbled upon my work online, others through contacts and friends.

~Do you have contact with the authors?
As they are self-published, constantly, which has been a pleasure as they have been so lovely to work with.

~On average, how long does a picture book take to illustrate?
A few months.

~Is it difficult working to deadlines? Does it interfere with your creativity?
I think deadlines (and most limitations) are great as they force you to work creatively to solve the problems (whether it be deadlines, materials, subject or otherwise).

Who is your favourite Australian children’s book illustrator and why?

Anna Walker. Not only is her work absolutely beautiful, she is a kind and generous illustrator who shares her experience and knowledge with others.

What’s your website or blog address (if you have one)?

Would you like to tell us anything else about yourself and/or your work?

The industry is full of amazing people and work, constantly inspiring me to continue learning and creating. I’d like to plug the work of Illustrators Australia (http://www.illustratorsaustralia.com/) for any illustrators out there (or authors/publishers) – they do great work for our industry and represent a whole lot of Australian talent.

No comments: