Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Adrian Johnson Lithuana

This illustration also by Adrian Johnson has a very Polish feel to it

Adrian Johnson's Stress Management

I like this illustration because of the simple forms and the limited use of colour,
yet it sums up the title and makes you smile.
Gillian Blease suggested we look at Adrian Johnson his website is

Gillian Blease's Talk

Gillian was a very interesting and engaging speaker who seemed very relaxed and willing to share the techniques she used to get her work accepted by art directors.
She explained that the position she is now in did not just happen over night it has taken 10 to 15 years to get to this point.

Gillian did her foundation year at MMU and then went to Newcastle for 4years studying Fine Art. So the first half of her career was spent as a fine artist until she tried her hand at illustration.

Gillian was lucky to get a residency with ACME in London. Artist Martin Creed had a neighbouring studio and seeing the style and method of thinking behind Creed’s work made Gillian question her desire to become a fine artist.

She added to her life’s experiences by spending six weeks in Japan teaching English.
This experience has influenced her illustration work, as she likes the Japanese way of putting in elements that work together and keeping the images precise. Leaving space creates its own drama. Gillian has always liked simplicity.

The way Gillian entered illustration was by winning a competition and having her artwork published in a magazine. She also did a mini crash course in illustration.
A great idea she had was to recreate illustrations to go with existing editorials
and she sent this with her portfolio to the Guardian. She now regularly sends out mail cards. Also she thinks it is worth getting images into Illustration annuals such as the AIO for good self-promotion. Gillian has been accepted for 2009 and thought it will cost about £500. This may seem expensive but publicity is very expensive and if it is a source Art Directors look at then it is worth it.

The work Gillian produces is usually for magazines, editorial and surface pattern. She also likes graphic design and logos fascinate her but they need to be accurate. She produced about 150 images for recipes in the Guardian and these were then used in a book.

Gillian has worked for

Restaurant Magazine
Daily Express
Letters page in the Guardian
Relations Column
Letters page
Book designs
Blueprint Magazine
Articles for Stephen Fry
South Bank poster

Important facts Gillian said to be aware of
Do not let your ego get in the way
Sometimes you have to be the servant
Sometimes the clients are very certain about what they want
You are not changing the world
Deadlines can be very short
Art directors may say the readers will not get your illustrations.
If you have not had a rough passed you may have to redo the image

I thoroughly enjoyed Gillian’s talk and thought she came across very informative and quite happy to share her ideas.

I found Gillian's images on place mats on this website http://www.jennyduff.co.uk/

Life is going to be tough for an Illustrator

I was talking to a designer at the weekend who was visiting Vernon Mill Exhibition. He took one of my cards but explained that due to financial constraints he bought STOCK illustrations for about £20. His clients were quite happy for him to do this. It's rather a depressing situation for illustrators.

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Sturgeon's Law

Sturgeon's Law prov.
"Ninety percent of everything is crap". Derived from a quote by science fiction author Theodore Sturgeon, who once said, "Sure, 90% of science fiction is crud. That's because 90% of everything is crud." Oddly, when Sturgeon's Law is cited, the final word is almost invariably changed to `crap'.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

French Illustrator from the 1960s

Tomi Uugerer 1968
I like the humour in these two illustrations but also the design and composition.

Monday, 20 October 2008

Soberingly true

Yep what Polly says about uk rates is true and is at the root of a lot of 'established' illustrators disenchantment with the industry. The explosion in illustration courses has ensured that the market is saturated and I cannot see this changing. We pre empted alot of this which is why some of our students go on to work as graphic designers or related industries or diversify into surface design. We always wanted students to have more than one string to their bow.That said I have always believed in 'Sturgeons Law' namely that 90% of everything is crap. That includes 90% of the illustrators pitching for work at any one time. The bigger problem is that they (the 90%) clog access to art directors and generally get in the way.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Bienal del Cartel en Mexico

These images are from participants of the
Bienal del Cartel en Mexico 2008 competition.
It is worth looking at all the different countries styles.
My favourites were the Polish but I also liked Taiwan

Tomasz Boguslawski (Polish)

Antoine Oliver (French)

Eric Olivares (Spanish)

Gorowsui Mieczystaw (Polish)

Saturday, 4 October 2008

Chilian Poster Artist Sebatian Kubica

100th Anniversary of the hospital for nervous and mental diseases in Zabki

Kubica designs many posters to order but he makes also many self-editions as poster art is his passion and a way of transmitting important social messages such as inequality of rights, intolerance, alcoholism, terrorism, war. One of his last social posters is an anti-war billboard, which was posted on the streets of Warsaw last November.
This information came from