A few thoughts on illustration. I do think that if I didn't paint I would want to be a picture book illustrator. I have drawn ever since I can remember and it was my first love. I adored, like many young children do, books about fairies and goblins. I have never really grown out of this and still collect books with fantastical themes and beautiful illustrations. I have a very well read copy of Brian Froud and Alan Lee's book 'Faeries' published in 1978. When I was in Italy many years ago travelling with a friend I bought an entire suitcase to drag my Italian picture books around in. This wasn't easy as there are alot of stairs in train stations. But as a result I do have a collection of Italian fairytales that I may never be able to read, but are however, very beautiful.
Drawing, illustrating, doodling what ever you want to call it has been the artist tread through my life. I drew all through school - and during class much to the displeasure of my teachers. I swapped drawings for Smurfs and sold illustrations and posters of fantasy characters while at Art school.
A collection of sketches from 2000
In my 20's I carried around with me a diary of sorts that I kept notes, important phone numbers and addresses and of course drawings in. I would sketch what I saw, what was in my imagination...creating characters out of people I met and places I visited.
At Art School drawing was definitely my strength as I didn't really develop an interest in painting until years later. I loved life drawing and was never very good at the fast drawings preferring the 1 hour to 2 hour sittings.
Since becoming a professional artist I haven't focused a much on drawing as I would like to. It comes down to deciding where I want to use the time. Painting has been my focus but there is always a nagging voice in the back of my mind wanting me to revisit illustration.
So 'one day' I will illustrate a book. I have been saying this sooo long that my friends and family don't believe me. The problem is that I want it to be 'thee' perfect book...even if that perfect book is just my perfect book. I have pages of illustrations that I have held onto from my 20s where I developed part of a book...well more like the characters of a book.
In an ideal world I would have a year to focus on this book and only the book. I guess I will know when the time is right.
In the mean time I am drawing while planning paintings - taking the time to map out compositions and ideas. I like this work in progress look [ See below] and I think this is what inspired me to work with some black and white prints of my work.
'Arrival' 2019, Pencil on paper.
Concept drawing for 'All That Binds Us', 'Under the Titi Tree'.