A little bit about me…
How long have you been illustrating? How old were you when you started?
I have been illustrating professionally since 2001.
However I was very young when I developed an interest in drawing.
Did you study art beyond high school? Where did you study?
I moved from Albany, WA to further my studies and did 3 years at Central TAFE in Perth to get an Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design (with a major in Illustration).
What made you decide that you’d like to illustrate for children?
In Primary school (Year 5) my teacher did a fantastic project of ripping apart a couple of copies of Animalia by Graeme Base. We studied the images for days! Finding every single object in them and cataloging them. He was very impressed and kindly sent us Autographs along with a gracious Thank You letter. I think this stuck with me and I’ve been interested in Children’s book illustration ever since. Finding every little detail in the picture books I read and hiding all sorts of small details in my own work.
How do you source illustration work?
I sketch, gather doodle or scan then create my work digitally with brushes I’ve made and some I have bought for Photoshop or Illustrator (depending on the mood – or the project)
Do you attend conferences? Which ones stand out? Where they helpful in advancing your career?
I’m extremely lucky to be part of SCBWI West Australia (Society of Children’s book Illustrators Intl) We have a retreat on Rottnest which is the highlight of my creative year.
Have you worked with educational publishers? If so, which ones?
R.I.C Publications. I’ve been there 10 years as a Graphic designer and Illustrator. I’ve worked on so many fantastic projects – including Boxed sets, Blacklines, Multimedia, Flyers and all sorts of Print-related things.
What materials do you use to paint your illustrations?
Sketch with pencil (usually mechanical) scan and Photoshop paint away!
How much time do you spend illustrating?
Too much! (according to my husband) but NEVER enough. I work as a graphic designer so I find photoshop very relaxing and will work a great deal of my free time because I enjoy it.
Do you use much technology with your illustrations?
Nerd alert! I love my tech. I have a 27 inch iMac with a Wacom Intuos tablet and a Wacom 13HD Cintiq. Photoshop CC is my favourite lately, but I do use Illustrator CC as well.
Do you have any tips you can share with us?
One thing I would say is to make sure you develop both traditional and digital skills. Digital is so powerful and essential to the printing process now.
Never leave home without a sketchbook!
If you don’t capture that amazing idea or image will be gone forever!
Also, never stop learning! Whether that be online courses, books or just YouTube.
Join groups to learn more about the industry including groups like SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) and there are many Facebook groups dedicated to helping Children Illustrators and Authors.
2003 TAFE Perth Campus Completed Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design Print and Packaging
2002 TAFE Perth Campus Diploma of Graphic Design
2001 TAFE Perth Campus Certificate IV Graphic Design
1998 Albany WA Certificate IV Art and Design
1997 Albany WA Higher School Certificate
And my interests are:
Illustration and design
Children’s book illustration
Greeting card design
Writing for children
Digital photography and reading
SCBWI member since 2014.