Saturday, 3 November 2018

Illustration Talk, Q&A and Workshop for the Artist Talks series in Guildford

Last week I expanded my map and travelled down to Guildford in Surrey to kick off the first in a series of Artist Talks run at The Boileroom. Fellow illustrator Andrew Thomson invited me down to speak about my illustration career, answer insightful questions, and run a drawing workshop for an audience of wonderful, creative people!

It was so great to spend time talking honestly about my career in the creative industries, show some of my secret projects, give an in-depth step-by-step look into my illustration process, and chatting about useful tips for turning creativity into a career.

A few slides from the presentation:

 As my talk was the first in a series (the line-up to come is stellar by the way!), and the audience were all different levels of ability - from people who just enjoy art on the side, to fully fledged creative industry veterans - I wanted to make the workshop inclusive and fun for everybody. I chose to base the workshop on one of my favourite warm-up challenges: blind contour drawing!

Blind contour drawing is basically just drawing the subject in front of you without looking at your paper (at all!). This often leads to hilariously squished-up or skewed drawings, which is especially funny when you're drawing your friend right in front of them! I started the workshop off with some examples of blind contour drawings I've done of some interesting celebrities, before working with the audience to move on to drawing their own celebrities and each other!

The workshop then moved on to the optional challenge of using some of the character design and editorial process I'd spoken about in the presentation to illustrate a wonderful poem based around the idea of learning to unlearn. There were really lovely interpretations of the poem!

It was such a great event. We had people crying with laughter, and creating some amazing (and fun!) drawings! It was such a pleasure to meet so many enthusiastic, welcoming and creative people, in such a beautiful town. So many people left the talk with huge smiles on their faces - I couldn't ask for more than that!

On the way home, I spent some time exploring Guildford (I even dragged my suitcase up the steep hill to catch a glimpse of the castle, I LOVE a good castle!). I also popped in to London to visit some of my very best friends too (we have drawn A LOT of blind contour drawings of each other  over the years haha)!

Thanks so much to the Artist Talks Series and The Boileroom for having me! If you'd like to take a look at my other workshop availability you can pop over to my website or drop me an email.


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