Archive for the ‘artists’ Category

Back to school : 5 Creative tips before you start art college or university


Pretty soon many very talented young creative people will be setting out to start university or  art college. I remember back to my very first day of university studying my creative degree, I didn’t particularly know how to best prepare for my degree or what to expect and hence this meant I was a tiny bit behind when I started.

If you’re in the midst of packing for university, ready and raring to start your course but want to prepare before taking the leap here I’ve put together 5 tips to do before you begin to help give you a flying start!

Art box materials

 Art college/university is a great opportunity to really broaden your creative understanding, explore different styles and experiment with materials to really find your own creative niche. So gather together a variety of art materials from oil pastels to watercolour, acrylic paint, ink and collage. Having these materials to hand in an art box or tool box will make it easy for you to carry to and from college with ease.


 The ever faithful sketchbook is going to be your best friendfor each art project your given.  There are lots of different sketchbook types that may suit various creatives tastes, when considering size though having larger size sketchbook such as a4 and a3 will give you plenty of room to draw without limiting your ideas.


 Thirdly is your portfolio which is where you’ll store all progressive artwork for each project from start to finish. In art college we were required to use A1 size portfolios with a centre binder and plastic display pockets, however depending on your college or university this may vary. Be sure to ask your college or university what type of portfolio you might need before you start so that you can be sure to get what’s needed in advance.

Computer equipment & software

 Computer’s , scanners and other such creative gadgets are sure to be important tool to help you edit , develop and progress with your work ( many of which maybe available to use within the college / university).  However it’s handy during those dissertation projects or final deadlines to have these things to hand at home as well to prevent unnecessary stress. So using some funding available to you look into investing in both a printer, scanner and laptop to enable you to effectively complete your work as and when with ease.

Art software such as adobe creative suites are also crucial tools for many creatives from photographers to graphic designers though they can be an expensive investment to make. However if you’d like to try these software’s in particular there are various trial downloads  and student editions of adobe that you can get online or subscribe to creative cloud to give you access to the various software you may need.

Be open minded & try new things

 Now remember you are on a creative journey through your art education and now is the time to be open minded and try new things because it all plays a crucial part in your self discovery. When I started art college I was very much into the animation, at 17 it was what I was aiming to do so I drew very graphically in my work using strictly ink and markers. Although because I did this I missed out on being able to experience a wider range of art techniques like print making which in turn made my work very limiting.

So be open minded, though you may well have an aspiration to be a specific type of artist also understand that this may well change as you venture through your course. My best advice is listen to your tutors and experiment in the creative studio as much as you can and absorb all the learning.

Image by designer  Susan Estelle Kwas   you can find out more about their work here.

Posted by Kate Leonard on 08/24/14 under artists
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“Designy Illustrator” Mikey Burton

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Self-described “designy illustrator” Mikey Burton is a Philadelphia-based creative with a serious bear preoccupation. His professional work centers around editorial illustration, infographics, and identity design. He’s also been bestowed with awards from ADC Young Guns, Communication Arts, & Graphis, some of the most prestigious organizations in the industry, and has worked with clients like The Atlantic, Converse, Facebook, Fast Company, and Wilco. Mikey values simplicity in principles of color and design, using minimalism and traditionally-inspired typography to an effective advantage. The understated elegance of his work is what secured his spot in the Art Crush Friday Hall of Fame.

Mikey’s aesthetic is identified in the intersection between sharp, geometric vector designs and substantial, meaningful textures. I use the word meaningful not to be an art school asshole, but to say that the textures have strong purpose and intent in his work.

As I’ve learned more and more about graphic design, I’ve started to see the fork in the road that exists between flat and realistic design (this gorgeous Webby-winning site explains this very conundrum in further detail). As I mentioned earlier, Mikey’s process allows real textures to shine through flat shapes, seemingly creating atmospheres within the simplest of flattened shapes. Interestingly enough, he’s referenced his really old HP LaserJet printer as being the very tool that creates these fascinating textures. [More about his process here.]

Mikey swears by two things in particular before starting his design process: coffee and preliminary sketching. He’s a refreshingly real person who needs to participate in real humany things before dragging along on the computer for hours on end. He will routinely post final work to his Dribbble account, modestly seeking feedback from the peers he so deeply respects. I admire his humility, honesty and continual hustle for meaningful work, even amidst his great successes thus far. For budding designers, here’s some of Mikey’s advice: create work that you want to be hired to do, and don’t be a lame person to deal with.

Follow along with Mikey and his adventures to come:






Posted by Rachel Frankel on 08/24/14 under artists,conceptual,design,digital,freelance,technique,typography
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Illustrator: Matt Chamberlain




Matt Chamberlain is a University student studying contemporary art and illustration in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, England. Since I am on the same course as Matt at University, I must say how amazing it has been to see his work progress over the years! His skills in mark making and detail are truly unique, using fine liners as his primary choice of media. Main influences include Dan Mumford and Paul Jackson which is clear to see from the detail in his work. See more of Chamberlain’s work here and on Etsy.


Thanks for reading,


Posted by Carla Taylor on 08/20/14 under artists
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Comics Illustrator of the Week :: David Lapham














It was great news when it was announced that Stray Bullets would be returning to comic stands again, with the new series Stray Bullets: Killers. I’ve been a fan of David Lapham’s work since 1995, when a local comics shop owner handed me a copy of Stray Bullets #1, and said, “I know you like different stuff. You should try this.” Well, Stray Bullets was different than your average super-hero/cartoon comic book, that’s for sure. It read like a mixture of Pulp Fiction, and Mean Streets. The series was self-published, and self-marketed for 10 years, with 40 issues produced, which is quite an impressive feat in the volatile comics market. Lapham took a break from Stray Bullets in 2005, and did writing/drawing work for many of the major publishers, including Young Liars for DC/Vertigo, Daredevil vs. Punisher for Marvel, and Crossed for Avatar Press.

It makes perfect sense that he would take the long awaited final issue of Stray Bullets, #41, and the spin off series Killers to Image Comics, since the publisher has now become a safe haven for the type of original, creator owned comics that David Lapham was an early pioneer of.

In addition to Stray Bullets: Killers, Lapham recently completed his first all-ages series, Juice Squeezers, and he’s currently writing the comics adaptation of the hit FX TV series(and series of books) The Strain, both published by Dark Horse Comics.

You can follow David Lapham on Twitter here.

For more comics related art, you can follow me on my website - Andy Yates

Posted by Andy Yates on 08/20/14 under artists,comic,illustrationfriday,weekly topics
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Editorial Submission :: Bett Norris

Post by Natalie




Bett Norris is an illustrator living in the lively city of Bristol, UK. She earned a degree in illustration from the University of the West of England and since then has worked on a variety of projects including editorial work, social media campaigns, exhibitions and most recently an animation for The School of Life. She finds inspiration in packaging, travel posters and classic design. Experimenting with shape, color and line she fuses traditional drawing techniques with digital technology to produce bespoke illustration, pattern design, portraiture and typography.

See more of Bett’s work here.

Posted by Natalie on 08/19/14 under artists,editorial submissions
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Kyle Bean

Posted by Jessica Holden

Kyle Bean

Kyle Bean

Kyle Bean

Kyle Bean

Kyle Bean

Kyle Bean graduated from the University of Brighton in 2009, he was spotted and commissioned by Liberty to create a window display.  He has a passion for crafts and conceptual thinking, using a variety of materials to solve the brief in clever and exciting ways. His clients include; Wallpaper, Selfridges, Google and Vogue to name a few.

To see more look at his website or follow him on twitter.

Posted by Jessica Holden on 08/18/14 under artists
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Pick of the Week for KING and This Week’s Topic


IF King

Happy Friday!

We’re excited to announce this week’s topic, but first please enjoy the illustration above by Manon Gauthier, our Pick of the Week for last week’s topic of ‘KING’. You can also see a gallery of all the other inspiring entries here.

And of course, you can now participate in this week’s topic:


Here’s how:

Step 1: Illustrate your interpretation of the current week’s topic (always viewable on the homepage).

Step 2: Post your image onto your blog / flickr / facebook, etc.

Step 3: Come back to Illustration Friday and submit your illustration (see big “Submit your illustration” button on the homepage).

Step 4: Your illustration will then be added to the participant gallery where it will be viewable along with everyone else’s from the IF community!

Also be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter and subscribe to our weekly email newsletter to keep up with our exciting community updates!


Posted by Thomas James on 08/15/14 under artists,weekly topics
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Exhibition: ‘Home Sweet Home’ at Atomica Gallery

Article by Oli Rogers

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nicolas_stevenson_kitchen_ghost 72dpi

nicholas_psychic_interior 72dpi

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Angela Dalinger_psychic_interior


Our homes are the places in which those many prosaic, private little moments that constitute our lives take place. We cook our beans on toast, walk about in our birthday suits, sprawl on our sofas, kiss our lovers with toothpaste still in our mouths, encounter roving wizards and savagely murder giants in our vegetable patches.

Wait, what? OK, so perhaps not all of these things happen in your abode all that regularly, but if you were, for example, a ghost or a Kafka-esque humanoid fly then you’d presumably still want a little sanctuary in which you could escape the everyday pressures of life, wouldn’t you? And who’s to say what sorts of bizarro business you’d get up to within those four walls? If this is the kind of thing you’ve ever wondered about (and you’re not averse to checking out the odd bit of contemporary art), then Home Sweet Home, the new show at London’s Atomica Gallery, might just be the thing to satisfy your curiosity…

Atomica is a leading light in London’s contemporary art scene, and showcases the work of lowbrow and pop surrealist artists and illustrators. Home Sweet Home is their latest exhibition, a double-headliner featuring the fascinating work of artists Angela Dalinger and Nicholas Stevenson. It promises to offer a bit more than your usual group show, as the pair’s charmingly-rendered slices of unconventional domestic voyeurism have been conceived specifically in reaction to one another. Sometimes subtly, sometimes more overtly, there’s a dialogue going on that demonstrates the cynical sense of humour shared by this pair, and also their take on modern home life. It’s aesthetically charming, and at times conceptually disturbing, but always delightful nonetheless.

Your opportunity to be a nosy neighbour runs from 14 August and runs till 11 September.

Posted by Oli Rogers on 08/13/14 under artists
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Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Amanda Conner



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Artist Amanda Conner has been working in comics since the late 80’s. She’s been in the top tier of mainstream comics creators for a long time now, but with  DC Comics’ recent New 52 reboot, Amanda Conner got the chance to relaunch the new Harley Quinn series, and has in the process solidified herself as one of the greats, while also redefining one of today’s most popular characters.

Conner developed her drawing skills at The Kubert School in Dover, New Jersey, one of the first technical schools for sequential art founded by comics legend Joe Kubert. She met her future husband, and current collaborator on Harley Quinn, writer/inker Jimmy Palmiotti, in the early 90’s when he was an editor at Marvel.. The couple was also responsible for a recent popular run on DC Comics’ Power Girl. Throughout her career, she’s worked with some of comics’ top creators, including Warren Ellis, Peter David, Garth Ennis, and Darwyn Cooke.

Her work has also been featured in The New York Times, MAD Magazine, and Revolver.

You can follow Amanda Conner on Twitter here.

For more comics related art, you can follow me on my website - Andy Yates

Posted by Andy Yates on 08/13/14 under artists,comic,illustrationfriday,weekly topics
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Illustrator Submission :: Katherine Hardy

Post by Chloe

Crystal City  Katherine Hardy Illustration RCA

reflection LRB © Katherine Hardy RCA

Stories from the Road  Kathrine Hardy RCA_640

Katherine Hardy is a freelance illustrator from the UK who studied at the Royal College of Art. She uses clever colour schemes to create beautiful, whimsical worlds. She is inspired by music and album covers and also sings jazz and blues!

If you’d like to find out more about Katherine Hardy you can read my interview with her here.

You can also visit her portfolio.

Posted by Chloe Baldwin on 08/10/14 under artists
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