Ken Graning Interview

It is my pleasure to present the autobiography and artwork of illustrator, Ken Graning. Ken Graning's impressive career as an illustrator spans an astonishing forty six years.

When It Comes To Logos These Companies Don't Play Around

The video game industry is a multi-billion dollar industry. In March, Forbes reported that Gabe Newell, founder of Valve Corporation, is "one of the richest people on the planet".

Ed Fella Interview

Ed Fella is one of the most prominent graphic designers of our time, and as you can imagine, a conversation with Ed Fella is both inspiring and enlightening

The Amazing Illustrations and Sketches of J.R. Mounger

Artist and designer J.R. Mounger has a passion for illustration and you sure can tell by the artwork he creates.

An Interview with Art Licensing Consultant, Maria Brophy

I first learned of Maria's work last year, when I featured the artwork of surf lifestyle artist, Drew Brophy, here on Illustration Pages - I've been a loyal fan and avid follower of both ever since.

FEATURED:

 

Sometimes Experimenting & Having Fun is the Best Way to Create Art

Contributed by Melissa Kojima


I'm sure you've heard that planning is everything in creating art and illustration. You have to know your goal and what the client wants and who your audience is. To satisfy all those demands a plan can be the easiest way to achieve them. But there are other ways of creating art that are less structured and linear.

Take for example how, Giant Robot store owner & publisher, Eric Nakamura and, artist and illustrator, Saelee Oh decided to make a stop motion animation. They had a few ideas of what to do to start, but nothing was completely planned. They said it was really organic how it unfolded and they were surprised how fun and quick it was to make it. If you click on this link, it will take you to an interview with them where they talk about their process.

I found it inspiring how it was more "play", as they put it, than anything else. Through experimentation, it came to life. It ended up being a cute little underwater animation created with cut paper. I'd say they proved that sometimes chucking the plan or not having one to begin with can be the best way to make art. That will make me remember to go with the flow and have fun.

Graphic Designer And Illustrator Carlton Hibbert's Patterns for Colouring on Facebook

The website, Patterns for Colouring is a joyful discovery made through our very own Illustration Pages Facebook page. Carlton Hibbert, the artist behind Patterns for Colouring, recently posted a link to the site on our FB page, and – the rest – as they say – is history.

On his coloring pages website, Carlton offers numerous categories of patterns such as abstract, organic, letters, stars and many more. And as if downloading the patterns Carlton creates isn’t enough fun, you can download patterns to color that have been submitted by other artists. You can even submit your own. The single download coloring page patterns Carlton offers are free. In addition, he sells 20 page booklets of patterns for a minimal fee.

Carlton Hibbert is a graphic designer and illustrator based in Bath, South West England. He has twelve years of experience in the design industry having worked on books, multimedia, music and magazines. His resume includes Dorling Kindersley, EMI, John Brown Publishing, Anness Publishing, Specialist Publications and Future. Carlton has also commissioned many of the leading illustrators and photographers in the graphics industry.

If you love to color then grab your crayons and color pencils and head on over to the Patterns for Colouring site to start having loads of fun. Choose a pattern you like, download it, print it out and start coloring.

And to stay up to date on all of Carlton’s new patterns for coloring, well you know what to do with the link below.

The Brilliantly Colored, Explosive Art of Matthew Hamblen on Etsy

colorful trees and cloud paint of Matthew Hamblen
Cloud landscapes, abstracts, whimsical art, lollipop trees, mountains, sunsets and dreamscapes, this is the art of Matthew Hamblen.

imaginative landscape painting of Matthew Hamblen
Matthew has been selling his paintings on Etsy for about ten years now. He considers himself to be an “improvisational artists”, meaning his paintings are based off his spontaneous thoughts and free spirit – the freedom to paint without limits.

two panel landscape painting by Matthew Hamblen
Matthew Hamblen colorful landscape painting
Matthew describes his work as moody, spiritually uplifting, unrestrained and fun.

The Fine Art Paintings of Artist Lorna Allan on Facebook

Are you familiar with the work of artist Eyvind Earle? Well among his many accomplishments as an artist Eyvind Earle was responsible for the styling, background art and colors for the Disney classic, sleeping beauty. He also worked on many other Disney films throughout the 1950s. He has been described as an artist who pursues beauty – his work described as striking and beautiful.

Lorna Allan is a self taught artist from New Zealand; an artist, like Earle, who pursues beauty, creating remarkably gorgeous landscapes. And although there isn't an obvious similarity between the two artists in reference to technique, their artwork has a similar atmosphere about them and a magical quality, both approaching the exquisiteness of a landscape in there own unique styles.

Lorna Allan records her world in a way that sooths your soul and shelters you from the harshness of realty. Her enchanted paintings are richly colored, alluring scenes that grant us the opportunity to see the peacefulness and magnificence of nature through her eyes.

Late Bloomers: Triumph Over Adversity

Has spring ever felt more glorious than it has in the northeast this past week? I’m delighted with the arrival of every new shoot, tiny bud, and blooming flower I see. While dabbling in my garden the other day, I recalled that last year, it took a while for some of my flowers to kick in. Between the endless spring rain and cool temperatures we had, many of my annuals simply never thrived and my perennials took longer than normal to return and flower. I was pleasantly taken aback, however, when I took a good look at my small verbena garden. The plants had barely grown for months, bearing a few small flowers every now and then, when suddenly, they bloomed with a vengeance. They poured abundantly over their brick edging, a riot of magenta and deep violet. They were simply stunning.

My verbena got me to thinking about late bloomers - both the plant and human variety – and I was struck by the similarities that both persuasions seem to share. First, the late bloomers I know have endured less than ideal growing conditions. They did not have the benefit of doting care, or a perfect environment, emotional or otherwise, nor a person or persons truly dedicated to their respective development and growth. The result: other people/plants blossomed sooner, sometimes “stealing the show,” basking in the adulation of those enamored by their early color, and who equated their effortless blossoming to a sense of inherent worthiness and inborn success.

The second observation I’ve made is that the late bloomers are the real scene stealers. They are the people and plants who have quietly persisted through unfavorable weather with little or no encouragement to not only bloom, but to do so breathtakingly. It is the late bloomers who can withstand the sudden temperature spikes, torrential storms, and gale force winds, having taken the time to become well-anchored and adapted to life’s shifting climactic circumstances before setting out to flower.

I remember that many of last year’s early garden bloomers quickly faded when the weather suddenly turned or became harsh, while the late bloomers took all of this in stride. The late bloomers continued to bloom through it all, perhaps because their energy was less dependent on external factors and generated, instead, from an inner reserve they had cultivated. Or maybe it was because they served to remind me, and all of us, that the things in life that are truly worthwhile really do take time. As is the nature of so many late bloomers I know, they triumphed over adversity, displaying a lasting beauty that had always been there, just waiting to blossom.

Do you know any late bloomers or are you a late bloomer yourself? Tell us about a “bloom” moment – when things finally came together.

Article by LYDIA GNAU
Illustration courtesy of KATHY HARE
Kathy Hare is a freelance illustrator based in Harlow, Essex in the U K. Kathy always had a passion for drawing, so after raising her children she decided to make a career out of her talent. After five years of study, Kathy graduated from the Cambridge School of Art with a BA (Hons) degree in Illustration. She is a traditional illustrator, working mainly with pastels and color pencils, however she still enjoys experimenting and playing with all types of media. Kathy Hare is represented by the David Lewis Illustration Agency.

Fuel Your Creative Engines With Misspato on Facebook

Misspato is a site dedicated to exceptional web sites that will fuel your creative engine. The focus of misspato is mainly style and quality of the websites displayed, not of the products they represent. Originally created in 2002, by web designer, Patricia Carvalho, misspato was built as a links page featuring Patricia’s favorite links for her own inspiration and reference. Soon it became quite popular and a new and improved version was built in that same year. It remained growing in 2003 to feature sites of several different styles such as cartoon, clean, geometric, minimalist, paper made, pixel, retro, and urban. The site was online until 2005 and has now returned via Tumblr with a new and simplified version and some additional styles such as grunge, handmade and girly, among others. Misspato is updated with about ten sites per day. Website submissions are accepted and featured based upon the criteria that they demonstrate good quality style and excellent design. Besides the main site in Tumblr, misspato also has feeds on its Facebook page and Twitter.

Does your site have what it takes to be displayed on misspato.com? Why not find out by submitting it today?

The Secrets of Creativity According to Marshall Vandruff

Contributed by Melissa Kojima


Galileo, the father of astronomy said, "You cannot teach a man anything, you can only help him discover it within himself." And that is really what a good teacher can do. He can open up whole new universes within you.


If you can find a teacher like that, you hang on his every word like its pure gold. I have been lucky enough to find that kind of inspiring teacher in Marshall Vandruff. Having took many of his seminars and courses, he has unlocked the secrets of creativity and illustration for me many times.


He likes to use the metaphor of passing on fire to his students. He give them fire to light their fuel and some burn slowly and softly while other are lit and explode like rocket fuel. Each student is unique and will burn differently.


I'm not sure what kind of fuel I'm burning, but he has definitely lit a fire in me. He helps me to discover new realms and to decode what was gibberish. Here are a few amazing things he recently revealed to me. He said there are 3 things that are the secrets of creativity:

1-Find how things are similar using metaphor. For example:
A little boy is a monkey.
Apartments are filing cabinets for people.
Fireworks are dandelions.

2-Find things that are different using opposites. For example:
The smoothness of a woman's skin placed next to the scaliness of an alligator.
The chaos of a crowd placed next to the order of columns on a Greek building.
The bright colors of a rainbow hoovering over a dark and shadowed valley.

3-The more creativity feels like recess, the more likely you will do it well. For
example, if you want to create detailed paintings that are as real as your own flesh, but you cannot sit still for a minute, it will seem like torture for you to create this kind of slow and carefully rendered art. If you find a way to create to fit your jumpy, quick nature, you will love, do it all the time, and eventually become great at it.

If you'd like to know more about Marshall Vandruff and perhaps take his inspiring and informative art & illustration courses, click on this link. You won't be disappointed.

Illustration Pages News:
Fawn Fruits Website Updated With Help of Carbonmade

Fawn Fruits has totally revamped his website. Come on in and check out all things good.

Special thanks to Carbonmade.com

www.fawnfruits.com

Graphic Designer and Illustrator Janet Allinger Displays Her Art on Facebook


California artist, Janet Allinger has been inspiring young graphic designers and illustrators for years with her amazing artwork and designs. Janet’s graphic design work is executed flawlessly and her brilliant sense of humor shines through in her uniquely stylized illustrations.

The hands of this skilled artist are in just about everything, from website design to business card design – from logos to stickers to pattern designs – digital painting to acrylic painting. It takes exceptional talent to be able to move between the two disciplines of graphic design and illustration and execute various design and illustration projects with such a high degree of success.

In addition to fanning Janet’s Facebook page to stay on top of the new creative coming out of her studio, you’ll also want to follow Janet’s graphic design and illustration blog. Her wonderfully informative blog which covers all her latest work also includes some of her really cool photography.

Janet is a real world, down to earth artist that every graphic designer and illustrator can relate to. Her clients include construction companies, restaurants and other local, small businesses. Her designs and illustrations for these companies are sophisticated when they need to be, informative when required to be and humorous when she wants them to be, but most importantly, always imaginative – always professional.

Illustration Pages News:
Oscar Armelles' Website Has Been Updated With New Work

Both sections on Oscar Armelles' website (Photoshop and Vector) have new work created for several clients.

illustrationsbyoscar.com

Stephanie Orma - She's SO Creative On Etsy

She's SO Creative is chock full of clever greeting cards, art prints, and other witty goodies established by San Francisco, "Chief Clever Creator" Stephanie Orma (the S.O. in She's SO Creative).

Stephanie Orma is a Creative Marketing Communications Specialist and San Francisco freelance writer. In a nutshell, she writes, designs, illustrates, and spreads the buzz. With experience as a marketing account manager for Fortune 500 accounts, Stephanie’s visual and editorial creativity is solidly backed by a strong marketing foundation. Her work has been featured by Time Out NY, Daily Candy, 7×7 SF Magazine, Marin Magazine, as well as a plethora of newspapers and popular blogs.


When she's not writing, designing, or spreading the buzz through her studio, Orma Design & Communications, Stephanie loves playing with witty words and winsome images and seeing just how far she can stretch the literal to hilarious limits. Her witty paper products are sold in hundreds of the best card and gift boutiques throughout the United States. She's SO Creative has been variously described as "a little whimsy, some snark, some cool, irreverent, witty and sans corn."

Stephanie is a contributing writer for HOW Magazine, Smashing Magazine, the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA), and writes on graphic design, branding, and creativity for the San Francisco Examiner.

Bird and Bee Designs - Greeting Cards, Note Cards and Other Things of Intrigue

Bird & Bee Designs was formed by artist Amy Bock (a.k.a. Bird) and designer Daniel Bresnihan (a.k.a. Bee) with the desire to create distinctive and light-hearted greeting cards.
A petite company located in Naugatuck, Connecticut, Bird & Bee greeting cards are printed and packaged in the U.S. with a concern for the environment, using soy-based inks and the finest quality domestic papers.

5 Interview Tips Every Graphic Designer Starting Out Should Know

Soon there will be many young designers ready to graduate from design school and join the rest of us working stiffs in the “real world”. Before pounding the pavement to find your first design position it’s important to keep in mind that graphic designers are creative, business professionals. And as business professionals it’s always prudent to practice good judgment when interviewing for a position. Below are a few tips to help guide you through your interview process as you embark upon your career and pursue the job of your dreams.

Dress like you actually want the job. Wear a suit. Yes, you read right – a suit. It would be a rarity if you were overdressed for an interview. You’re a professional. And the individual interviewing you is also a professional. It’s said over and over because it’s true. You only have one chance to make a good first impression. Even if you somehow know in advance the studio, agency or company has a casual dress code – don’t dress casually. Think of it this way. Chances are slim that the agency you’re interviewing with pitches to clients for new accounts in casual work attire.

Don’t show up too early or worse, late. When it comes to interviews there’s no such thing as, “I got lost coming here.” or “I was running a little late this morning.” Showing up late is obviously inconsiderate but showing up too early can be just as annoying to your potential employer. The person interviewing you is busy. They don’t want to be kept waiting and they also don’t want the phone call that you’re down in the lobby a half hour before they expected you. Ten, possibly fifteen minutes early is acceptable. If you arrive too early wait in your car for a while or take a walk around the block.

Carry a professional portfolio case. No one wants to eat filet mignon off a garbage can lid. And no one is thinking about the design awards you’ve won if the pages are falling out of your ripped portfolio case. Don’t be afraid to invest in yourself. Make the investment and purchase a quality portfolio case. Remember also, there’s a difference between fine art portfolio cases and graphic design cases. You’re not carrying around 18” x 24” drawings of nude models. Common sizes for design cases are 11” x 14” and 11” x17”. Keep the focus on your work.

Keep your website up-to-date. If your website isn’t up-to-date and professional looking leave it off your resume. And quite honestly, this is 2010; you should have a website on your resume. Keep your website professional looking. Visit agency websites if you need ideas or those of well-respected designers in the field. Any advertising agency or studio worth their weight in salt has a site that’s easy to navigate with a focus on their work. The things you won’t find on their sites are dead links or pages that are under construction. It’s also good practice to use a professional web address. A safe bet is to use your name, bobjones.com. But if by some chance your name is taken, use your last name with the word “design” after it, jonesdesign.com. It would be different if you were starting a new agency or design studio and your web address was the same as your business name. But as an individual designer think about how the web address will look on your resume – slamminflyingdesigns.com doesn’t sound very professional. Don’t confuse creativity with foolishness. Again, keep the focus on your work.

Dude, don’t call me dude. Believe it or not, this has happened. No matter how comfortable you feel on an interview, or how casual a studio, agency or company appear to be, remembering you’re still on an interview is extremely important. Address the interviewer in a respectful manner. Some people might insist you address them by their first name, but never, under any circumstances, call anyone, dude on an interview. Unfortunately I’ve interviewed many young designers that have called me dude but I’ve also had the pleasure of interviewing someone who kept dropping the f-bomb – no kidding.

And one bonus tip:

Have something professional to leave behind. You should leave something behind other than your resume for someone to remember you. At the very least leave a business card with the interviewer. These days you can get about five hundred business cards printed up for a small fee. Your business cards should be creative, well-designed (of course) and professional. Don’t give yourself ridiculous titles on your business card such as, Jones Design, Bob Jones, CEO, or Jones Design, Bob Jones, President. If you were the President or CEO of your own studio, agency or company you wouldn’t be interviewing for a staff job at another business. There’s nothing shameful about the titles, “Graphic Designer” or “Art Director”.

The main thing to remember is to always be professional. Present yourself not only as a creative individual but also as a business person. Studios, agencies and companies are looking for individuals who can work with and present to clients. You might not start out doing so but as your career advances so will your responsibilities. Creative Directors and Art Directors are “customer facing” individuals in many businesses. These are some of the things to consider when starting out on a career as a designer.

Do you have any interview stories you’d like to share as either the interviewer or the person having been interviewed?

Article and Illustration by LOU SIMEONE

Illustrator Matt Hendon's Artwork on Redbubble

You might remember back in January we featured Matt Hendon’s Facebook page. Well, Matt has some of his illustrations for sale over at redbubble.

Matt graduated from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. His work has been published in American Illustration 28. He is currently an editorial illustrator living and working in the Los Angeles area.

The Power of Ink on Paper: Ernesto Caivano's Art

Contributed by Melissa Kojima

I've been practicing making drawings with just brown ink on white paper. The results have pleasantly surprised me. But I really needed some inspiration to see if I'm going in the right direction. If I can find a master in whatever I'm working on, it keeps pushing me to the outer limits. I found that inspiration and master of ink in Ernesto Caivano.


His ink drawings are so fluid and perfect. There is something old and timeless about it. I think of ancient etchings, yet they are completely contemporary and new. He was born in Madrid and now works in New York City. He is about to open a solo show at Richard Heller Gallery in Los Angeles that will start March 20, 2010.


Here are a few of his newest pieces. Since I'm just down the street from this gallery, I will have to go check out this master's incredible art. You can learn more about him and see more of his art by clicking on this link
 

Enter The Land of Erinaceous Illustration on Facebook

If you threw Heinz Edelmann's kaleidoscopic characters into the cosmic, psychedelia of Alton Kelley's world, and crashed it into the world of artist Klaus Voorman, the result would probably be the whimsical, morphing, twisting, textured land of illustrator Erin Klauk - phenomenal.

Erin Klauk is a freelance illustrator living and working in Brooklyn, New York. Each of Erin's posters take us on a journey through spinning, hand drawn type, curving lines and intense colors that move with the same rhythm as the music they promote.

What a pleasure it is to see such a talented illustrator working today creating original, stylized, hand drawn artwork that in all likelihood has been influenced by many of the great artists of the past.

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