Illustrators owe it to themselves to be dissatisfied, to be unhappy with their work, their situation, their direction. It’s the constant burden all artists must face if they want to push forward their creativity. Never be complacent, always have something to gripe about. Creativity is galvanized by being unhappy with the way things are, for discomfort leads to change. This line of thought was prompted by a recent Campaign blog post by Steve Henry “Safe isn’t Safe” which empha
I am not an artist.
Or maybe I am, I don’t know, it’s not my position to judge. Art is after all in the eye of the beholder. i.e. the general public, the viewer, not the creator. It’s the bane of the creator that we are too closely involved in our own work to accurately judge whether our work can be called Art. Of course we have a biased opinion, I think everything I do is significant or I wouldn’t do it, but I also detest everything I’ve created as I know I could have done i
As my son was interested in my picture books I suggested he think about writing something himself. Surprisingly in the space of an afternoon he came up with a couple of solid ideas with what seemed like very little effort. After I helped him hone them into shape we had two complete stories well on the road for submission. Why, I asked myself, can a teenager approaching his thirteenth birthday who’s far more interested in Nintendo DS than reading books still produce something
Seeing the smooth transition of Dekune’s large expressive painted gallery works to the powerful images in her picture books made me realise how different the culture and education behind Japanese picture books is from, say the UK or USA. This is work by someone who’s as much an “artist” as they are an “illustrator”, in fact there’s little division between the two. I remember when I was at college in the UK my tutor Tony Ross (himself a well known children’s illustrator) confi
Finally catching up with things after the exhibition. Here’s another illustration blog,ILLUSTRATION ART, a sharply observed insight on the lost craft of technique. It got me thinking. (Here we go, another grumble…) It’s been suggested that the two world wars basically destroyed the skills of finish and technique for illustrators, (you know, the “craft” part of Arts & Crafts), though the 20th Century was pretty much of a helter-skelter for creativity even without two titanic s
(this post abridged from a previously published essay) I’ve been sketching ever since I can remember, looking back now in honest truth I don’t believe I could have followed any other path except illustration. I was pretty dreamy about everything else at school apart from English and History, so by the time it came to a career decision it was pretty well determined which direction I would take. As a young child I had limited access to children’s books, the only reading matter