Monday, 30 March 2009

Geoff Grandfield

Geoff Grandfield's work is very dramatic due to the fact that he uses various angles and shadows in his work. I was looking at his work for my project based on creating illustrations for a story. His work has been a great help as it guided me to create some nice compositions.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Valerie Pezeron

Hi fahad farid,
What can I say? I read a lot, watch as many movies as I can, go to museums and surf the net also looking at design websites. It takes a while to know what you like and what works for you; I advise looking at other illustrators and studying the history of illustration. Eventually you will know what works for you,
Kind regards,
Valerie Pezeron
Freelance Illustrator

Tal Rosner

Dear Fahad,

Thanks for your email - the question you asked is quite big and this email will be too short to answer it in depth. I am influenced by various art-forms and work across a fairly wide range of projects (from art-installation to TV and film).

I think that books, design book and design websites are a good way to start. I don't know how big your library is but I am sure that one of your tutors can supply quite a significant list of good books to look at.

Also - going to see exhibitions in big museums or smaller galleries is always good. I don't really know of places in Stockport/Mancheter but I know that Liverpool has got a good small Tate Museum, and also another centre called FACT which has smaller but very interesting exhibitions all year-round. If you can get to London that is a good place to get 'inspired'.

I am listing below a group of artists, designers, architects and filmmakers that I like. They are from different eras and disciplines - I will leave you find out about them.

Josef Albers
Le Corbusier
László Moholy-Nagy
David Hockney
Christian Marclay
Hélio Oiticica
Sergei Eisenstein
Peter Greenaway
Oscar Niemeyer
Ernő Goldfinger
Saul Bass

I hope this is helpful!



Gillian Blease

Hi Fahad, I’ve finally got a bit of time to answer some of your queries.

Who are my influences?: Of course I love all the greats – Paul Rand, Hans Schleger, Abram Games. These were some of the first designers I came across when I started illustrating and they really resonated with me and helped direct my style. Other influences are the artists from my fine art days: Julian Opie, Claes Oldenberg, Andy Wharhol, Peter Doig, Terry Frost. They all combine interesting concepts with great design and composition. They have a real simplicity and richness at the same time along with being quite witty or clever. I look at work from all sorts of sources as much as a I can, especially textiles, graphic design (and logos), advertising, childrens illustration and lots of vintage images – posters and books.

Ideas and compositions: I work really hard on the ideas. When I get a brief I move away from the computer and books and just think, with a piece of paper and a biro. Its important to take time out just to let the ideas flow. Usually I get my best ideas when I let my brain relax – ie on a bus or walking somewhere but mostly there isn’t time for that. If thinking fails me then I’ll start to consult books or my scrapbooks of collected material and see if they spark an idea. The idea and the composition pretty much happen simultaneously. I have to be able to visualise it more or less immediately in my mind’s eye. That’s why I find it very difficult when a client comes to me with their own idea – I can’t get excited about it.

I try to keep things very simple and minimal and contain the interest within quite strict limitations. I find that good ideas need space which has become an integral aspect of my work. The success of an illustration though can very much depend on the client. If they truly appreciate your style/ideas and are happy to give you free reign it’s much likely that you will do a better job as there’s mutual respect all round! I had a job earlier this week and I simply couldn’t understand why they had asked me to do it – probably short of time and a lazy/inexperienced art assistant. Needless to say, it wasn’t one of my better illustrations. Illustrating comes and goes. I find you can have a really good run of several weeks where the ideas just keep sparking and then there are times when it’s like getting blood out of a stone. You just have to go with it and know it’ll get better.

Hope that goes some way towards answering your questions.

Best wishes, and good luck with your work

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Dmian Gascoigne

An illustrator and a film maker Damian is a multi talented designer who has served the industry for the past twenty five years. His approach to his work is quite simple as he believes that there is always something around us which can incorporated in to a piece of work. He works when he is not working. What this means is that he is constantly collecting images digitally or collecting item which he feels might add something new to his work. He is quite intrigued by body posture therefore he is always observing how people move or even animals behave when not conscious about what they are doing. Damian believes that its not hard to find characters for a story or an illustration as if we observe effectively, people around us can be the characters we are looking for. Being an illustrator for such a long time Damian decided to work with moving image. He is not good with the program therefore he hires people to do it for him. He is now adding 2d with 3d image. Its quite different to what he is use to producing but he feels this is the next step in his career and as a designer.

Monday, 9 March 2009


Otto is an illustrator and over the years has produced work for numerous newspapers and magazines. He did graphic design in 1991 and after he finished his studies, he focused on promoting himself as a designer. He was interested in drawing cartoon characters more figurative work before he got in to screen printing. He finds screen printing more effective as oppose to digital prints. He is interested in the quality of the screen printing and its behavior on paper. As his work is been commissioned based, he has to work quite quick and effectively. He finds that having a good image references can make work and coming up with ideas a lot easier. After doing quite few commissioned work, he felt that his work needs to have a new element to it and thus his work started be more abstract and more playful. He likes the idea of combining real images with his screen prints as it enhances the overall visual impact. His influences are Russian and Polish designers and through out his work there are traces of these influences. Quite bold and simple thus they convey the message quite clearly. He has worked for the Guardian newspaper, Independent newspaper and also has produced his own books of illustration(using re-cycled images at times). Renaissance paintings are vital for his references as he depicts the figures and re uses them in his work. He also uses the motion pictures for his ideas. Especially films made by Alfred Hitchcock. He likes the dramatic acting and the cinematic shots through which he can generate ideas for his composition. It is a good way of working as it will add something new to the work and will keep it fresh and relevant. He likes working alone as it helps him focus and are less distractions to deal with.

Tracy Kendall

Tracy Kendall is an interesting designer. She has many interests or better yet she is quite keen on working with various mediums. She has done BA in fine arts and later worked in Royal college as a technical support for print making. She has always been interested in designing prints which were simple but effective at the same time. In order to achieve the simplicity in her work, Kendall focused on simple subject matter in her work such as flower, stem, leaves etc. She has worked as a wall paper designer for many years and therefore posesses a great amount of experience in this particular field. She started off producing wall papers which would normally be around 2.15 meters tall and that would be her format to work within. She then would take hundreds of pictures of the subject matter(a flower's stem for example)and then would choose the image which she feels has the beauty the potentcy and the strength to be the main image for her wallpaper. Kendall also produced prints for lamp shades which has been quite popular with the homeware retailers(sold her designs to Habitat, a store which sells home ware items). She exhibits her work quite regularly and therefore stays in public eye. Paris, Newyork, Milan and London are some of the places Kendall has exhibited her work. She mainly uses black and white as her colour scheme as she is targeting the her audience as most exhibitions are dominated by male audience. The monochrome scheme seems to work for her and also gives that elegant and sofisticated look to her designs. Later in her career, she moved on from using just one particular medium. She then started playing the idea of interaction, the idea of feeling and touching. This added a new dimension to her work as it was starting to become unique and exclusive. Kendall is influenced by fashion and she adores it, so therefore fashion played a big role in this transition. She used buttons in some of her designs all hand stitched and would give her work a new dimension. Paper patterns, jigsaw pieces, photographic imagery are some of many ideas she started to incorporate in her work. She would hire a professional photographer to take series of pictures of book stacks, stacks of dishes etc and would be made in to a wallpaper design. This shows her creativity and self believe in what she does. She has confidence in her designs which is what makes them so successful every time. Her aim is to produce simple, clean and pure ideas and by doing so she manages to capture the audience's attention and the visuall impact needed in order to make her designs stand out from the ever-growing crowd in the world of art and design.