Custom House Portrait

house portrait emma blockhouse portrait close upFor my dad’s 50th birthday I painted him a portrait of my parents Victorian house, including their dog Sammy. I think it looks lovely against their beautiful Sanderson wallpaper. If you would like a hand painted house portrait of your own, I have now added it as a listing on my Etsy shophouse wallpaper

Brush Lettering Workshops with Quill London

brush lettering workshop london

brush lettering practiceI am very excited to announce that I will be teaching brush lettering with Teri from The Lovely Drawer in a new workshop hosted by Quill London. In the class you’ll work on exercises to practice making shapes and brush strokes. You’ll then practice writing words in broad stroked uppercase and thin stroked lowercase with plenty of help on hand. By the end of the workshop you’ll be well on your way to developing your own personal brush lettering style.

The class price includes a kit of essential materials to use in class and take away with you, pastries and coffees.

Our first classes are on the 2nd of May, and you can buy tickets here.

Illustrator Insights: One Year Later

I can’t believe it’s already been a year since Stacie and I did our first illustration career talk. I though it would be nice to catch up with some of the people who came to our original talks and see how they are doing. It is so lovely so see how well everyone is doing!

emma farrarons

First up Emma Farrarons, an illustrator and designer who has just illustrated a best selling book.

Did you find the Insider’s Guide to a Career in Illustration helpful?

I found the Insider’s Guide to a Career in Illustration very helpful. It was interesting to hear the side of two successful illustrators and how they have ambitiously built their careers. I’m a children’s picture book designer and and illustrator.  But whilst focusing more on the graphic design side of my career, my illustration work was put on hold. Going to this talk was enlightening, motivating and taught me a lot about social media. It helped feed my curiosity in illustrating again and reaching out to the world with social media.
What was the most valuable part of the talk for you?

There are two valuable parts of the talk for me. Hearing Stacie and Emma share their experience, and learning more about social media. Before the talk, I was still very new to the world of social media and blogging and so I didn’t feel very confident. Also, it was especially nice to befriend Emma and Stacie and keep in touch.

What have you been up to in the past year? Have you seen development in your illustration career?

I feel my illustration career has catapulted. In the past year I held my own solo exhibition on Scandinavian folklore. I’ve attended illustration fairs and networked with other illustrators.

My illustration has been published in an exciting crowd funded book by Amelia’s Magazine, My blog is growing more and more. I’ve contributed comic strip stories for the children’s science magazine Okido. Since January this year, I am the author and illustrator of a bestselling adult colouring book called The Mindfulness Colouring Book. I am currently developing my first children’s book which will be presented at the Bologna children’s book fair this Spring. So to conclude, I would say that going to this talk was a fantastic decision.

Eileen Kai Hing Kwan

Eileen Kai Hing Kwan is a fellow Middlesex graduate and creating the most beautifully intricate pencil drawings:

Did you find the Insider’s Guide to a Career in Illustration helpful?
Yes, it was really useful and informative to hear directly from two established Illustrators in the industry, as compared to just reading articles or blog posts. It was also lovely to spend a relaxed afternoon with other fresh-faced creatives who were in the same boat as myself.
What was the most valuable part of the talk for you?
I found it reassuring and confidence-building to hear directly how Emma and Stacie worked, it was valuable hearing how ultimately it was possible to be a full-time Illustrator. I left the talk feeling less lost and more confident in what I was going to do from there in my illustration work. Their tips and thorough answers to our questions were also really helpful and constructive, as it’s quite rare an opportunity to get such clear answers to your concerns and queries about the industry. 
What have you been up to in the past year? Have you seen development in your illustration career?
This past year I’ve felt more confident as an illustrator, and I believe I have made some achievements in my illustration career so far. A few to mention, last year I had the pleasure of being invited to take part in several art exhibitions in London and Europe, alongside this, I currently have a publisher who is interested in my work for a children’s book and have also recently set up my etsy shop. The tips on the importance of social media and having a clear branding across all your platforms (Facebook, Twitter, etc) to increase professionalism and your illustration’s online presence helped with getting my work out there. One milestone I achieved from the talk was setting up my etsy shop myself, the fantastic tips and individual feedback from Emma and Stacie of photos and what your shop should look like gave me a great starting point. I’m really looking forward to what 2015 brings, and would definitely recommend going along to one of Emma and Stacie’s talks if you’re a budding creative!

jessie bayliss
And Finally Jessie Bayliss, an illustrator and hand lettering genius:

Did you find the Insider’s Guide to a Career in Illustration helpful?

Yes, definitely! I gained an honest insight to the world of Illustration.. the cake and illustrated goodies were an added bonus too!

What was the most valuable part of the talk for you (meeting new people, insight into the industry, having your questions answered etc.)

I think it just made me realise that things were possible.. seeing you and Stacie talk us through how your built careers illustrating.. really inspiring. You were both really approachable too- so we felt at ease asking any questions.. was great to meet other like minded people.. the talks had a great balance of content- pretty illustrations to what printers to buy and taxes..also the social networking tips you mentioned- found this really handy for getting work out there!

What have you been up to in the past year? Have you seen development in your illustration career? 

The last year has been a bit of a whirlwind really,  I think the uncertainty of working for yourself is quite daunting- but having a variety of different jobs is actually really exciting- from wedding stationery and children’s publishing to designing tour visuals!  Definitely, (working with Jolly Edition for example who I hadn’t heard of until they were mentioned in your seminar!)



You can book your tickets to our Illustrator Insights talk here. Early bird tickets still available!



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