29 Sep 2010

Artist 27: Octavi Navarro








A big warm welcome to the fantastic Octavi Navarro! Children's illustrator, artist, animator and technical scientific draughtsman! That's right, the truly multi-talented Navarro has the talent and diligence, which is clear from his highly polished style, it captures a gentle serenity and presents the viewer with calculated delight. It is whimsical yet refined, and this runs deep within his work, with initially simple imagery delicate and detailed in its execution. There is lots of joy and a peaceful conscientiousness which gives the room to see and to imagine. From beautiful Barcelona to your computer screen read about him here!


Who are you:
Hi! I'm Octavi Navarro, an illustrator from Barcelona, Spain. I love art, music and my cats, even though they often scratch and play with my drawings!

What do you do:
I absolutely love everything related to art. Right now I'm trying to stay afloat in the highly saturated market of spanish children's illustration, but I also enjoy creating little personal animations, making technical drawings for scientific publishers, and improving my painting skills in art schools.

How did you start:
Since I was born I had two dreams: become an astronaut and become an artist. The first one was impossible to fulfill as it required good maths skills, and the second one... well... I forgot to mention that my dream was to be a rich artist. So I decided to forget all that and start what has become a fairly long career as a graphic designer, but at some point my old dreams appeared again and I had to go after them. I'll never travel to the Moon and I'm far from being rich, but now I can proudly say that I'm feeding the little "artist" inside me.

A Personal statement about you or your work:
I work my illustrations as little scenarios where I put static characters. I like them to look like dolls or sculptures in a quiet environment. I also make big use of traditional and digital tools to find the desired textures, shadows and light. What I love the most of this profession is that you never stop improving, you learn more and more everyday and that's priceless!

Here comes Halloween!

Illustration by Natsuki Otani

Hello everyone, this is the first ever news post on this blog!

Before announcing the news, I'd like to thank you all for the support you've given to our blog, we couldn't keep this blog going without you readers, followers and amazing artists. I'm so so proud of how this blog turned out and the wonderful community around Illustration Rally. I really hope that we can keep making you happy with our posts and give the opportunity to share fresh artwork from artists all over the world.

Well, enough of that, here is our news!:)


Halloween event

This will start from the 1st to the 31st October, you can send us any Halloween related artwork eg. Illustration, Photography, Graphic Design, Animation and I will post artwork I get with the links to your website/blog daily! You can share your Halloween related products even, so this is the perfect opportunity to promote your stuff.

There is no restriction for the submissions as long as it's Halloween related, it can be new work or something you've made already, and anyone can join this, pro, amateur, students or your kids!:D

This is to enjoy and share the joy and the terror of Halloween and give artists an opportunity to share their fantastic work with everyone.

Please send your work to illustrationrally [at] hotmail.co.uk with the link to your portfolio site, we are really looking forward to seeing your art!

Thaaaaanks and get cracking,

Illustration Rally x

28 Sep 2010

Artist 26: Tigz Rice









For our latest feature we bring you Tigz Rice, illustrator, photographer and visual assassin, her work is evocative and full of dark beauty which resonates with a vibrancy that is rare. Not only is her presentation crisp and fresh but her work unearths the deeper emotions and feelings that everybody shares. Her work is visceral and sexual but is executed with a deft light touch, that at once chills and entertains. She has a superb visual repertoire, and uses her copious skills to take you by the hand and show you your darker side. Get your chills and thrills but read about her here first!

Who are you:
I am Tigz. Or Tigzy, as most people like to call me!

What do you do:
I'm a freelance illustrator and photographer based in London.

How did you start:
After graduating with a first in illustration from Westminster University in 2009, I was full of determination and drive and set up my own design studio in London, where I specialise in alternative photogaphy and picture books for adult audiences. Having entered the industry during the worst part of the recession, I was constantly writing letter, emails and making phone calls to advertise myself whilst working on personal projects to keep myself busy. Sure enough, my hard work paid off and I was able to release my fourth picture book Bitten this summer in Bath. The rest is history!

A Personal statement about you or your work:
Tigz is a freelance photographer and illustrator from London. Graduating in 2009 with a first in illustration from Westminster, she specialises in alternative and couture fashion photography and gothic illustration. Previous clients include Boomerang PR, London Burlesque Week and Diabolus Amor. Tigz has also featured in Digital Arts, Photoshop Creative and Computer Arts Projects.

25 Sep 2010

Artist 25: Michelle Kondrich








A warm welcome to the fabulously quirky Michelle Kondrich, ex New Yorker and current Sopranos watcher. Beneath Michelle's illustration lies powerful observational skills, and the exquisite crafting of each image with delicate cross hatching and efficient line drawing techniques, demonstrates her talent for both looking and drawing. This skill gives her work a certain serenity and a gentle clever humour. Soft yet strong like a baseball bat in bubble wrap her illos will hit you clean out of the park! read about her here.

Who are you:

What do you do:
Illustration!

And watching the Sopranos.

How did you start:
Last fall I realized that I was unhappy with my work and wanted to start doing something I was passionate about. I started reading about illustration and listening to all the podcasts I could find (Escape from Illustration Island, Art and Story, Big Illustration Party Time, Chris Oatley's Artcast) and started to work on my portfolio. Since then things have been picking up. I've had illustrations published in The Deli Magazine and I have a short children's story appearing in a collaborative anthology that will be available soon. (check here for more info)

My husband and I recently moved from NYC to Denver where he is starting a Ph.D. program and that gave me a real opportunity to push my illustration career forward since I didn't have a job waiting for me in Denver. It's been very scary but also very exciting.

A Personal statement about you or your work:
I have a quirky sense of humor and I think it shows in my work. My cross-hatching and detailed line work often achieve a kind of edgy retro feel that lends itself well to editorial illustration as well as children's illustration.

24 Sep 2010

Artist 24: Piktografika








Meet Piktografika. The unstoppable force from the north, Piktografika has grown and grown, developing styles and creativity that, like the sea is ever changing but is growing stronger by the day. His work is vital and taps into that subconscious realm of thought and desire by not only its crisp stylish roots but its quirks and originality that make you stop and take it all in. A truly thoughtful guy with complex yet stylish work Piktografika is one to watch, and one to read about here too!

Who are you:
I call myself Piktografika (my real name is Patrik Carlsson) and I'm a freelance illustrator and designer from Stockholm, Sweden.

What do you do:
I draw things and then I scan the results and colour and manipulate them using Photoshop and other software. When I'm not working at the drawing board or in front of the computer screen I stare vacantly into the distance thinking about strange stuff. Sometimes I grab a sketchbook and scribble down a new idea I've found during these daydreaming sessions. Then I make a drawing based on that idea and scan it and colour it and so forth…

How did you start:
I always wanted to do something creative and work with something art related. My path to this career as full time illustrator have been far from straight though. To get a chance to do something where I could use my knowledge of drawing and painting I worked as an art teacher for many years. It was fun teaching but I'm really happy that I decided to take the step to become a full time illustrator. It's been tough but I really love the freelance life; being my own boss and draw things for a living.

A Personal statement about you or your work:
I want to have a clear and hopefully clever idea as a basis for my illustrations. I don't really like things that are just eye candy. There has got to be something for the viewer to think about. I like it when there's a point of view in illustrations and I try to incorporate something of my own voice both when I do personal work and when I'm working for a client.
But I'm only just now beginning to find "my style" and I hope that I'll continue to grow and develop as an illustrator.

18 Sep 2010

Artist 23: Cool Surface











Sharp, clean and desirable, the work of Cool Surface does exactly what it says on the tin! Its intelligent and slick, well composed but keeps the naturalistic flair of accomplished artists. With skills like this, its no wonder that this twosome are well on their way to becoming industry giants. A mix of humour and chic give their work that classic comic edge, and you know whether its a giant robot or a femme fatale you won't get a better atmosphere than Cool Surface! Check them out here!


Who are you:
David and Sarah Cousens aka Cool Surface

What do you do:
We draw a slightly insane, often cheeky and always colourful world of illustration where our heroic robots, surreal monsters, sexy women and adorable animals excite and entertain in advertising, editorials, exhibitions, professional education, publishing and television work. We also drink a lot of tea and insult each other which are the cornerstones of a great marriage!

How did you start:
I got my first proper start after submitting my work to Advanced Photoshop’s “Peer Pressure” section 4 years ago. The Editor awarded me “Best in show” and offered me a tutorial for the very next issue. Shortly afterwards my art was printed in Digital Arts where a senior editor at Kingfisher/Macmillan publishing saw it an offered me a 4 book deal. This was enough work for Sarah and I to both illustrate so we took my established brand name Cool Surface and turned it into an illustration company.

A Personal statement about you or your work:
We make art that we enjoy ourselves and hope that others do too. We try to always have fun in our artwork and wherever we can we’ll throw in little Easter-eggs or jokes in the artwork so that people can really enjoy looking at the details.

17 Sep 2010

Artist 22: Sara E Barnes






An extra special welcome for the stunning and captivating work of Sara E Barnes! Talented illustrator and prolific blogger, Sara has a powerful style with a drama and tension. Using the tools of both writer and illustrator Sara is able to create and reflect simultaneously, creating work which captures your imagination and then asks you questions. Check out her stunning blog and don't forget to read her interview too!


Who are you:
I am Sara E Barnes. I live and work in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. Home of the famed tv show, The Wire!

What do you do:
I tend to multi-task; I do freelance illustration and design, I am one part of the WAFA Collective (a global collective!), and I also blog - I am the person behind Brown Paper Bag, which focuses on works on paper.

How did you start:
I've been drawing and painting for as long as I can remember. I found my mother's sketchbooks as a child and became inspired by what I saw. I was (still am!) lucky enough to have parents that supported my artistic endeavors, and I attended art school in Baltimore, MD. From there, I've continued to create work and to attempt to speak my point of view to the world.

A Personal statement about you or your work:
Coming from an illustrative background, my work tends to have some sort of narrative to it, although not always a linear one. I am interested in pattern and repetition, and how these things shape our daily lives, not only aesthetically, but through our engagement of the world around us. I apply it to my images, which a lot of times deal with what goes on inside our head - how we see ourselves and the demonstration of a feeling (or feelings).

15 Sep 2010

Artist 21: Jo Cheung








A warm welcome for the stunning and lovely work of Jo Cheung. Jo's work is a unique and delicate blend of collage illustration and digital art, that is combined with a delicate touch and deft hand to give the free and easy beauty that characterises her work. Kaleidoscopic and colourful Jo is inspired by nature and brings a fresh open feel to her work that although containing many elements is finely balanced. We love her, you will too, read all about her here!

Who are you:
Hello there I'm Jo Cheung and I'm a freelance illustrator currently living in London. I come from a small town called Doncaster, in South Yorkshire up North, which has nothing apart from a really good tea room which does the meanest Club sandwich and hot chocolate. There's always little old ladies in there as well.
I make collages and then retouch it on the computer. I like making images of animals.

What do you do:
My part time work is a tutor. And so the free days my mornings start with two cups of coffee followed by anything from doing work for my own personal portfolio, submitting work for on line briefs and in between that updating my Etsy shop. Although the temptation to procrastinate working from home is that I end up spending more time making cups of tea than doing real work!

I'm a freelance illustrator for Gia London so I design all the email and newsletter banners basically all the promotional material. i designed all the web pages and icons etc for the website and it was a great experience working with them.
When it comes to starting a new piece of work for I do everything in my sketchbook before finishing it off on the computer. I use paper and stickers from my own collection and cut everything out, rearrange it, stick it down with glue or tape, draw over it then transfer it to the computer. I've moved slightly away from figurative illustrations as animals and the natural environment are the main theme in my work.

Since I've graduated about a year ago there are times when I've been busy trying to get things done on time and days where I spend all day making images or just taking product photos for my shop. I like that freedom of not having a proper structure in the week as I'm the kind of person who gets more things done if I just go along with it!

How did you start:
For as long as I can remember I've always been drawing something and on anything! And honestly, I wasn't good at any other subjects apart from Art and erm Sociology. I was actually either going to study animation or fashion design but illustration was for me. Because there's so many things I want to do and illustration crosses various design areas and disciplines there's no limit as to what applications and media you can take on or apply to; so I think my work reflects these interests. And it's probably because I'm inspired by artists who do a range of work like ContainerPLUS and Vault 49 for instance who specialize in typography, advertisement, illustration and art direction....... I want to do everything!!!!!

A Personal statement about you or your work:
Whimsical, naive, fun and playful often depicting a dream like and fantasy environment with rosy cheeked animals.

Artist 20: The Hidden Dingbat Collective













Dynamic duo Lauren Baker and Phil Howell are an unstoppable team, bringing you fresh clean and imaginative imagery and characters, its going to be hard to stop this pair from taking over the scene with their eclectic list of clients and accessible bright and cheery designs. Permanently on a quest for the perfect breakfast but already fully stuffed with skills and style, read all about the wonderful Hidden Dingbat Collective!

Who are you:
We are Phil Howell and Lauren Baker and together we make
The Hidden Dingbat Collective, a graphic design and illustration studio based in the wonderfully artistic and ever sunny Essex in the UK

What do you do:
At the Hidden Dingbat we work in a number of fields from character design to type setting and everything in between. We try to provide the lighter side of design, and believe that a sense of humour is key - making your target audience smile will connect with them on a higher level. We work with companies of all shapes and sizes but we mainly work closely with small businesses, start up companies and charities on everything from stationary, poster campaigns and print media. We always try to give them the graphic design they deserve.

How did you start:
This is a hard question because really we have only just started but we meet three years ago at university. We work in a similar way and so we began working on live briefs that came in to the uni together to split the work load. We took on a lot of jobs in our final year and towards the end we landed a large contract with a start up company, to whom we provided with stationary, postcards, logos and a website. This job gave us our first real taste of freelance work and so we decided to set up a studio. Luckily for us our a new creative hub had just opened in our home town called
15 Queen Street we moved in to the space a week after finishing university and in the last two months have been fully booked with work. We are currently moving in to our own studio space in the building.


personal statement:
We are two recent graphic design graduates from Essex, although we've been established as a collective for about a year and a half. We make lighthearted, fun and accessible design and illustration, and like it to have a sense of humour. We've worked for the most eclectic group of clients you've ever heard of, from the NHS, to hardcore punk bands, to local colleges. We're obsessed with 90s cheesy music and are on a never-ending hunt to find a place that does the perfect breakfast.

14 Sep 2010

Artist 19: Thomas G.P. Ball









Welcome to the wonderful world of Thomas G.P Ball, illustrator, live artist and all round cheeky monkey. When not creating dynamic and ice cool illos Thomas is finding creativity in everything around him, and it shows! As a live artist he has developed a sense of drama and his work has that simple likeability that sets it out as been developed by a skilled eye. Coming soon to a venue near you, the art revolution couldn't ask for a better comrade, read about him here while he can still be caught!

Who are you:
Hello! I am Thomas G.P. Ball, an Illustrator based in Sheffield. Currently, I am about to undertake my Final year at Sheffield Arts Institute at Sheffield Hallam University.

What do I do:
I draw. I paint. I print. I make. I find pretty much anything can be a form of creativity and this is a philosophy I try to utilise. I have found my comfort zone with Lino and Screen printing, as well as digital illustration, but I am always looking for new ways to express my imagination. I am also a Resident Live Artistat a bar in Sheffield called SOYO (creating original work in front of a crowd) . After doing Live Art at Tramlines Festival (free music festival in Sheffield) a collective of the artists participating was set up called Stars In Stripes. our group specialises in Live Art and Live Decorating, painting murals on walls of pubs, bars and even hospital waiting rooms!

How did you start:
I had a little bit of a misspent youth, buying into Banksy revolution, but alas my poor graffiti skills were not going to get me anywhere, I soon realised I had better skill with a pen and paint. Since my earlier days painting very expressively and without any real purpose or intent, I've begun to really discover myself as an illustrator. I had a very beneficial year out, and came to university to study Graphic Design without a Foundation degree, I'm now specialising in Illustration. It has been the most incredible 3 years of my life so far, I'm only getting more confident with everything I'm doing and ultimately just enjoying myself as much as I can.

Personal Statement:
I don't see illustration as a job, I see it as something I simply really enjoy doing (as I'm sure everyone else does!). I gain inspiration from a lot of different things, from old screen printed posters and packaging from before my time to the musings of drunks around Sheffield City Centre (always full of comic value). I've found great comfort and confidence in screen printing, but mainly in Lino and Woodcut, which is my main focus for my 3rd year studies. I take a lot of inspiration from my immediate environment. Especially, the disused/discarded/abandoned. I adore music and film, and it greatly influences work I produce, certainly when doing Live Art. You can thank people such as Nicholas Saunders, Jean Jullien, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Johnathon Miller for influencing me and moulding me into the artist I am now.

12 Sep 2010

Artist 18: Lucy Davidson





Lucy Davidson is a bright and sunny illustrator/designer/needleworker with a fresh but domestic style and a love of all things lively and fun. Her work instantly makes you smile and is a happy reminder of English summers and her delicate but bold style grabs you and wraps you up like a blanket! You can read her interview here.

Who are you:
I'm Lucy, but I draw under the name Peas and Needles.

What do you do:
I'm an Illustrator but also a Designer. My day job is a bit of both.

How did you start:
My family are very arty so I guess most if not all my skills come from them. I'm always wanting to learn more so I find it very hard to just stick to one craft.

A Personal statement about you or your work:
I like to sew/draw/paint/knit/crochet/embroider and more, so one day I would like to be able to combine all of these and then I think I'll be happy. O and I also would like to do all this with a pug on my lap and a glass of squash in hand.