Anna Goodson Illustration Agency

Featured Artist – Emory Allen


Artwork by Emory Allen

What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
As a kid, I moved around a lot, but no matter where I lived, comic book characters stayed the same. So, my earliest memory of drawing with a purpose (not just doodling with oversized crayons) was trying to mimic the drawings from my 1992 Marvel Universe trading cards (which I still have).

What type of environment do you prefer to work in? At home or in a studio? Listening to music?
My home is where I find most of my inspiration, all of my favorite things are here! My wife, my cat, my books… There’s also a lot of wonderfully old trees and parks in my neighborhood, so taking a stroll around the block can clear my head pretty quickly. I typically listen to comedy podcasts while I’m working—they mesh well with my jovial illustrations.

As a working illustrator, do you still find time to create art for yourself?
Everyday! My daily drawing project, anexquisitebeast.com, is 8 months along as of today. Each drawing is a small, quick way for me to get rid of whatever weird, random stuff is left in my head at the end of the day.

What type of artwork do you have hanging in your home?
Coming from a design background, I have a lot of screen printed posters both hanging up and in various piles around my house. They’re just waiting for a prime spot to open up on my walls!

What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
By working through it. Sometimes my hands know what to do and my brain has to play catch up!

If you had to describe your body of work in one word, what would that word be?
Characters


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News published at 8:00 am, Monday, June 9th, 2014

Featured Artist – Marie Lafrance


Artwork by Marie Lafrance

How and when did you know that you wanted to become an illustrator?
I’ve always doodled and drawn on any available surface, but thought I wanted to be a graphic designer. When I started working in graphic design I realized illustrating was all I wanted to do. So I did.
 
What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
As a child I had a thing for royalty so I spent years drawing nothing but people with crowns on their heads.
 
What type of environment do you prefer to work in? At home or in a studio? Listening to music?
After many years and many studio mates I’m back working from home, which makes it easier for me to work 24/7. I listen to talk radio all day and music at night.
 
As a working illustrator, do you still find time to create art for yourself?
It’s so tough to take the time, but so important, for fun, and from time to time to break the mold I’ve put myself in.
 
What type of transition needs to be made between creating art for yourself and creating art that is commissioned?
Frankly, none. My mind takes a trip around an idea to try and zero in on the way to express it, whether I’m the boss or commissioned.
 
When you are creating commissioned work, how do you take yourself out of the project and focus on the idea that needs to be conveyed?
It’s really a voyage of some kind, trying to see it in different angles, differently from my first idea, sometimes to go back to it in the end. The first sketch is always excruciating, but once that door is open the other ones speed by.
 
What accomplishment so far in your life stands out as most important?
I’m going to have to take the Fifth on that one, seeing that I would make myself guilty of conceit for saying my brilliant child.
 
Who was the first illustrator that you noticed and admired?
M.C. Escher, but was he an illustrator? Henrik Drescher and Brad Holland then.

Do you read criticism done on your work?
Yup.
 
How do you deal with negative criticism?
I don’t like it of course, but then I become combative, and I think “Hey, I’ll show them wrong!”
 
What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
I look at plenty of images to jug my head back in position. And if I have the luxury of time, I take a walk with my dog and sleep on it.


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News published at 7:00 am, Monday, May 26th, 2014

Featured Artist – Tony Healey


Artwork by Tony Healey

Where do you draw your inspiration from?
To quote Chuck Close: ‘Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work’

What type of environment do you prefer to work in? At home or in a studio? Listening to music?
Both. At my home studio I tend to work like a Trappist monk. I also share a studio with 5 other illustrators in central London, which is a little livelier.

What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
I’ve been drawing since I can remember. My dad was an accomplished natural draughtsman who, given different circumstances, could have been a professional artist himself: it could well be that seeing my dad at work was the spark for my own interest. I like to think so.

Who was the first illustrator that you noticed and admired?
As a youngster I spent a lot of time reading comics. Leo Baxendale and Ken Reid were favourites, but the artist of this era that I most tried to emulate was Frank Hampson. Frank Hampson drew Dan Dare for the Eagle comic. There was a quality to his black which seemed blacker than black. I found out many years later that he used to re-ink the black parts after the watercolour had been applied. It’s a technique that I hijacked and that I still use today (though I do so digitally now): I always make the topmost layer a copy of the original drawn layer.

What are your goals for your future as an illustrator?
To continually try to improve and to try to produce work that I would want to look at.

What question do you wish an interviewer would ask you?
…and what is your fee for this interview, Mr Healey?


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News published at 10:20 am, Monday, May 12th, 2014

Applied Arts Awards And Interview


Artwork by Andy Potts

Andy Potts had three entries chosen for this year’s Applied Arts Awards and was interviewed for the Split Run section of the current issue.


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News published at 9:33 am, Thursday, May 8th, 2014

Featured Artist – Eva Tatcheva


Artwork by Eva Tatcheva

How and when did you know that you wanted to become an illustrator?
From a very early age I was fascinated by picture books and used to spend hours looking at the illustrations and thought how amazing it would be if I could create similar books myself. Then, when I was 11 I joined a drawing class in my home town and this is where it all began….

Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I draw a lot of my inspiration from Nature in its most natural format. I also get inspired by colours and the performing arts, anything that is out of the ordinary and by incredible people who have achieved some great things.

What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
Scribbling on the pages of a picture book and being told off by my parents for ruining the book.

Do you read criticism done on your work?
Always, and actually think it is a compliment that someone took the time and effort to give feedback. In illustration, design and publishing, there are a few occasions when people do not praise or criticise, leaving the creator in limbo as to what needed to improve to be worthy of response.

How do you deal with negative criticism?
I am an absolute perfectionist and any criticism is always welcome. I find criticism very healthy and humbling. There is no definitive excellence in art and design, it should be viewed always as a learning curve, to which we all have room to listen, learn and improve. At the end of every year I look back at my work and see improvement. I am influenced by my fellow illustrators, clients’ feedback and family and friends who offer me advice in order to see something from the viewers objective.

What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
Watching movies and MTV. Looking at abstract art.

If you had to describe your body of work in one word, what would that word be?
Colourful.


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News published at 2:39 am, Monday, April 28th, 2014

Featured Artist – Jojo Ensslin


Artwork by Jojo Ensslin

How and when did you know that you wanted to become an illustrator?
I always thought that I wanted to make movies, so during my studies I mostly made animations, short movies and music-clips. But for that, and other small jobs that I did, I was drawing a lot and after a while I realized that I could earn my money doing it and became an illustrator.
I was always drawing since the time my brother showed me how to use a pencil. Of course, I didn’t think of becoming an Illustrator when I was young – actually at this time I dreamed of becoming a farmer and growing world famous tomatoes.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Life, love, friends, travelling… well, that’s too superficial. I would say authors like Boris Vian and Douglas Adams, filmmakers like David Lynch and Dennis Hopper. Artists like Warhol and Egon Schiele really made me start reflecting and thinking about my own perceptions. But the wonderful worlds and stories my fiancée and I create are the biggest source of inspiration for me.

What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
When I was about 5 years old we lived in Neanderthal (yes, exactly this place). I remember grinding up stones that produced different colours. I did it with a whole big pile of rocks and in the end I had my first piece of “Landart”.

What type of environment do you prefer to work in? At home or in a studio? Listening to music?
At night in the summer, with good music (Scout Niblett or Cat Power) and no phone ringing.

As a working illustrator, do you still find time to create art for yourself?
Sure.

What type of transition needs to be made between creating art for yourself and creating
art that is commissioned?

That’s easy. In free work for myself I can do whatever I want to and just listen to opinions or suggestions that I want to hear. In commissioned work I have to satisfy at least two “persons”: the client and myself. Sometimes there are many more (agencies, girlfriends of the Director, the therapist of the Art Director etc.) so it can get a bit more complicated. In these cases I mostly have to forget that I want to be satisfied with the end product as well.

What type of artwork do you have hanging in your home?
There is a wonderful piece by Mario Wagner, one drawing by Frauke Berg, one by Moki, a couple of drawings from dasha (RDW) and two woodprints of my own.

What accomplishment so far in your life stands out as most important?
Getting through all the pain, fear and throwbacks for months to keep my right hand after I got bitten by a cat!

Who was the first illustrator that you noticed and admired?
Hergé with “Les Aventures de Tintin”.

Are there any other current illustrators that you feel you identify with or share a similar style?
Not in sharing styles, but humour. One of the greatest for me is Lewis Trondheim and also Tim Biskup.

How do you deal with negative criticism?
If they are right, they are right. But I always remember when, how and under what circumstances things are done or created. So I can also be forgiving with myself.

What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
Surfing and listening to music. If all that doesn’t work, I grab a sheet of paper and start writing and I stop when the page is full. It doesn’t matter what I write, the only importance is that I don’t stop and think in between. Fabulous output sometimes!

Is there any one publication that you still have aspirations to see yourself in?
Only one? ;) Okay, there would be an animated film on ARTE (French-German broadcasting station) and… well, there are too many. Oh well: childrens Books!

What magazines do you personally read?
DER SPIEGEL, DIE ZEIT, Les Inrocuptibles, and a friend gives me all her fashion magazines, but mostly I don’t read them, I just flip through the pages.

What are your goals for your future as an illustrator?
Become famous and live a good life. Of course, work on my style, become better and faster.


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News published at 7:00 am, Monday, April 14th, 2014

Featured Artist – Tyson Smith


Artwork by Tyson Smith

What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
I used to sit down at the kitchen table with my dad and do drawings with him. My dad doesn’t have an artistic bone in his body, but he and I sure enjoyed those times.

What type of environment do you prefer to work in? At home or in a studio? Listening to music?
I have a home studio where I can get away and listen to some music while I create my art.

As a working illustrator, do you still find time to create art for yourself?
I don’t do as much as I used to, but I have found some inspiration with my 3 year old son who loves to create art and be creative.

What type of artwork do you have hanging in your home?
Mostly photographs that myself and my wife have taken.

Who was the first illustrator that you noticed and admired?
Early on I was inspired by cartoonists like Bill Watterson and when I started getting more into art I noticed and admired the work of Dr. Seuss, M.C. Escher, Norman Rockwell, and J. Otto Seibold.

How do you deal with negative criticism?
I am my harshest critic, so when I read some negative criticism, it pales in comparison to what I’ve already thought.


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News published at 7:00 am, Monday, March 31st, 2014

Featured Artist – Vin Ganapathy


Artwork by Vin Ganapathy

Where do you draw your inspiration?
My inspiration comes from everything around me, events, and friends. I like carrying a sketchbook or notepad when I go out, just to write down ideas. I sometimes take photos on my phone camera as references.

What type of environment do you prefer to work in? At home or in a studio? Listening to music?
I work at home, and converted part of my living room into a studio. I start out listening to music (usually something mellow). But as I get more into the project I’ll have the TV on and change the music to something upbeat, it gets chaotic. I only notice all of the noise usually when I’m finishing up a project. I’ve noticed if I try to do work in silence I find myself being distracted easily.

As a working illustrator, do you still find time to create art for yourself?
Yes, always. I find that when I’m working on a project for a client, I have ideas for personal projects that I jot down, or draw a quick thumbnail in my notepad. If the job has a longer deadline I’ll make my own art just to get it out of my system.

What type of transition needs to be made between creating art for yourself and creating art that is commissioned?
I find that commissioned work will always be the clients final opinion, so I would make it the way they wanted the piece. I usually set up steps for clients to make sure it is the direction they wanted. For my own work, I usually just have an idea of what I want to convey and draw it out. I like the spontaneity of ink drawings, mistakes and all are captured.

When you are creating commissioned work, how do you take yourself out of the project and focus on the idea that needs to be conveyed?
For commissioned work, I focus on what the client is describing. I would imagine a scene or whatnot and try to create it as described. I find that being an illustrator you have to adapt to whatever the client asks for, but also offer alternative ideas that might work better. Usually when a client approaches me for a job and they have a specific piece in mind, I’ll send them sketches of what they ask as well as an alternative (maybe a different style or approach). I try to put myself in the shoes of the clients’ audience, it’s important to try different angles to make sure what would be the proper fit for a project.

Who was the first illustrator that you noticed and admired?
I would say Kent Williams when I was 12 or 13 years old. I remember seeing his rendition of Wolverine (an X-Men comic book character) and it was so different than regular comic book stuff, it was a figurative art painting, that blew my tiny mind away.

What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
I like to go for walks around my neighborhood in Brooklyn into Manhattan. I usually listen to music and walk for miles. I like getting out of the house it unlocks a different way to look at a problem I’m struggling with.

If you had to describe your body of work in one word, what would that word be?
Figurative.


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News published at 10:17 am, Monday, March 17th, 2014

Featured Artist – Hanna Melin


Artwork by Hanna Melin

What is your earliest memory of creating art? (or drawing as a child)
My sister and me always did Christmas decorations together with our mum. I can remember being around 5 and painting pine cones and gluing them together with felt to create some Christmas ornament.

What type of environment do you prefer to work in? At home or in a studio? Listening to music?
I work in a studio, but I used to work at home. I don’t really mind where I work, as long as it is quiet. When I get into my studio, I put my headphones on and I get into my own world. I don’t like people watching me while I work, I like to just be “alone amongst all the people”. I listen to audio books and crime stories from the radio.

When you are creating commissioned work, how do you take yourself out of the project and focus on the idea that needs to be conveyed?
I keep going back to the brief and rereading it over and over. I start to do sketches, and then go back again.
Am I being clear enough or can I put in some more details to emphasise the “plot”? Even when I am finished with the final image, I go back and read the article/brief.

What type of artwork do you have hanging in your home?
Posters from museums all over the world. My favourite museum is “Louisiana”, Denmark. I have artwork from shows there, a favourite being William Eggleston.
I also frame the pictures we get from my boyfriend’s cousin, aged 5. There is a new arrival at the moment where she has written ” poo, wee, bum”. I like that one a lot.

What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
Go out. Get some air and look at people. Or if I am lazy, just look on Google images.

If you had to describe your body of work in one word, what would that word be?
Fun.


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News published at 6:30 am, Monday, March 3rd, 2014

Featured Artist – Nathalie Dion


Artwork by Nathalie Dion

As a working illustrator, do you still find time to create art for yourself?
In the last few years, my schedule has been filled for weeks in advance, so my sketchbook has become the playground where I create art for myself. Still, I do use every opportunity to sit down, preferably not in my usual work environment, and follow the inspiration of the moment.

What type of transition needs to be made between creating art for yourself and creating art that is commissioned?
The sketches I do for commissioned work are very precise and if approved, ready to go to final. To make the transition between work and sketchbook I have one rule: No sketch allowed. The first draft is the good – or bad – one . Straight to paintbrush. Judgment-free!

What type of artwork do you have hanging in your home?
Framed prints from some of my favorite illustrators: Jean-Philippe Delhomme, Maira Kalman, Miroslav Sassek, Michel Rabagliati… An original Aron Leighton collage I bought on eBay. And a constantly evolving cork board – at present filled with stuff I picked up at Montreal’s Expozine.

What accomplishment so far in your life stands out as most important?
Making a living as an illustrator is in itself my biggest accomplishment – a cliche, but oh so true! I am still grateful for it after all these years. The “Urban Babies” board book series is especially important to me. The adventure began five years ago with “Urban Babies Wear Black”. Initially, it was meant as a single book. But we were asked to create a follow up. One title after another, it turned into a successful series. Michelle Colmann Sinclair is now working on the next manuscript, so I’ll soon be sketching the 10th volume.

What is your favorite way to get out of a creative block?
I doodle freely and watch the idea unfurl on the page.

Is there any one publication that you still have aspirations to see yourself in?
I’d love to illustrate a children’s book story that’s been in my mind for years.

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Malgré les demandes de votre métier d’illustratrice, trouvez-vous toujours le temps de créer pour le plaisir ?
Ces dernières années, mon agenda est complet plusieurs semaines à l’avance. Il est difficile de prendre le temps pour des projets personnels d’envergure. C’est pourquoi mon cahier de croquis est devenu mon terrain de jeu. Je profite de toutes les occasions pour dessiner en dehors de l’atelier; salles d’attente, cafés, bibliothèque…

Comment effectuez-vous la transition entre la création sur commande et la création pure ?
Les croquis que je produis à des fins professionnelles sont très précis; prêts à passer à la couleur dès qu’ils sont approuvés par le client. La règle d’or qui distingue ma création personnelle de ma création professionnelle est simple : Croquis interdits ! Le premier jet est le meilleur (ou le pire, dans certains cas ! ). J’y vais directement au pinceau. Sans jugement.

Qu’est-ce qu’on peut voir accroché aux murs de votre maison ?
Des impressions encadrées de quelques-uns de mes illustrateurs favoris : Jean-Philippe Delhomme, Maira Kalman, Miroslav Sassek, Sara Fanelli, Michel Rabagliati… Un collage original d’Aron Leighton acheté sur eBay. Et un babillard de liège en perpétuelle évolution. En ce moment, il y a un tas de bidules dénichés au salon Expozine 2009 de Montréal.

Quelle est selon vous votre plus grande réalisation personnelle ?
Le fait de vivre de mon métier d’illustratrice, c’est déjà beaucoup en soi. C’est peut-être un cliché, mais c’est tellement vrai. J’en suis toujours aussi heureuse après toutes ces années. Ceci dit, je suis particulièrement attachée à la série de livres pour enfants Urban Babies. L’aventure a commencé il y cinq ans avec Urban Babies Wear Black. Au départ, il ne devait y avoir qu’un seul livre. Puis on nous a demandé une suite. Les titres se sont succédé, et c’est aujourd’hui une série populaire. Michelle Colmann Sinclair rédige présentement le manuscrit du prochain livret. Ce qui veut dire que je vais bientôt commencer les croquis du dixième volume de la série.

Quelle est votre méthode favorite pour sortir d’un blocage créatif ?
Je gribouille sans trop réfléchir jusqu’à ce qu’une idée surgisse.

Y a-t-il une publication dans laquelle vous aimeriez voir vos illustrations paraître un jour ?
J’aimerais beaucoup illustrer une histoire pour enfants que j’ai en tête depuis plusieurs années.


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News published at 7:01 am, Monday, February 17th, 2014