Artist Interview: Hana Lee – Illustrator

Hana Lee Illustration
Tell us about yourself, who are you, where are you from, and what do you do?

Hello Jung Katz! My name is Hana Lee. I’m from Tokyo, Japan and I study Illustration at Camberwell College of Arts in London. I draw lots of people and anything weird that comes to mind. That’s really all I can do.

How did you get started doing what you do?
I come from a very artistic background. My father is a director and my mother and my sister both graduated art school, so I could say my love for drawing was going to be inevitable. I used to steal my mother’s lipstick and draw all over the carpet, and I don’t think much has changed since then.

Hana Lee IllustrationHana Lee Illustration
What’s your inspiration?
Anything ordinary or extraordinary that happens around me. It could be a strange dream that I had or the disgusting meal I had on a plane, or even a broken air conditioner.

What is art to you?
Means of communicating things I can’t put into words.

Hana Lee IllustrationWhat does your typical day look like?
I often times just sit around and think of what I should do, and spend the last few hours or minutes of the day drawing.

How do you keep motivated?
Sleeping lots, listening to music, derailing myself by watching funny videos and petting cats.

Hana Lee IllustrationWhat do you hope to accomplish with your work?
I’d just like to keep improving. I still tend to work inside my little shell so I really want to push my limits and do things I’ve never done before.

What, if anything, would you tell your younger self?
‘You’ll be famous enough to be interviewed by an amazing art blog and it’ll be great. Also stop wearing that Nightmare Before Christmas jumper because you look ridiculous in it.’

Hana Lee IllustrationWhat’s the best advice you’ve been given?
My father once told me that I shouldn’t try to fit everything inside a frame. Back when he said it I think he meant it literally, but now I interpret it as ‘don’t try to draw things that are conventionally nice and cater to every single audience I have, and do what I like.’ I’ve already upset a few people with my illustrations, but that’s bound to happen.

What are your thoughts on art school?
Art school definitely helped me grow as a person, not just an illustrator. I’ve become more confident in myself and the things I make and I’m honestly nothing like the person I was before.

Hana Lee IllustrationWhat’s your dream project?
Getting a graphic novel published by Nobrow, hopefully. I’d also like to work collaboratively with someone because I haven’t had too many opportunities to do so.

What art supplies do you use?
Fine line pens (0.2 are the best), gouache and photoshop/pixelmator.

Hana Lee IllustrationAny other artists that you would like to recommend for others to check out as well?
Jan Svankmajer, Taiyou Matsumoto, Masaaki Yuasa and Henrik Drescher are my favourite artists and greatest inspirations. I also really enjoy the works of Kaneoya Sachiko and Rebecca Sugar. I’d also like to recommend everyone on my course but that would result in a never ending list of names. But I’m inspired by each and every one of them in different ways and I’m always excited to see their work and it makes me happy that I’m surrounded by such talented people.


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Artist Interview: Gill Chantler – Illustrator

Gill Chantler IllustrationToday, we’d like to introduce you to illustrator, Gill Chantler.

Tell us about yourself, who are you, where are you from, and what do you do?
I work as an Illustrator, in my work I participate on all sorts briefs helping to make projects look exciting and fresh. I was born in Scotland were I was never short of inspiration for things to draw! Some of my earliest memories were of being fascinated by shapes and patterns, sketching for hours at my folks place.

Gill Chantler IllustrationHow did you get started doing what you do?
Ever since I was small I was constantly drawing and creating things. When I got a bit older I decided to focus in on this passion and go to art college. Briefs come in from all sorts of angles so I started off being very open to new collaborations and projects. Collaborating with friends in similar fields is also a good idea.

What’s your inspiration?
I try to gather in new inspiration every month, from my own observations in sketchbooks, other designers, all sorts. Though I always return to Scandinavian Designers such Marrimekko, a textile company, for their refreshing patterns and bright blocks of colour. I’m also a great fan of the master, Matisse for his super colourful paper cuts.

Gill Chantler IllustrationWhat does your typical day look like?
I like to draw in sketchbooks initially, allowing any ideas to come out through trial and error in inks, pens and pencils. I then scan all this in and try to work out a strong composition keeping in mind the wishes from the client.

How do you keep motivated?
Looking at folk who manage to keep down full time jobs and have amazing creative projects on the side. This greatly motivates me that there is always time to put your energy into some good projects!

Gill Chantler IllustrationWhat do you hope to accomplish with your work?
I hope to make exciting work, full of colour and shapes that perhaps makes people laugh or that they hopefully haven’t seen before.

What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
This came from my tutor, Jonathon Gibbs amazing illustrator and wood engraver from Edinburgh College of Art, Make work that excites you, if it doesn’t stop! The viewer won’t be excited by it either(!)

Gill Chantler IllustrationAny words of wisdom to aspiring artists who want to pursue a similar career?
Not my words, but the words of the fantastic multi-ranging artist and illustrator Beci Orpin ‘Put your hand up, talk to people and work your arse off! People might recognize your potential but you are responsible for putting it in front of them first.’

Have any future aspirations that you’d like to share?
I’m open to working on new and interesting projects- so what ever is put in front of me I’m keen to tackle! I’d love to collaborate with a home-ware company and do some ceramic/ textile designs so watch this space or say hello on @gillchantler

Gill Chantler IllustrationWhat’s your dream project?
I was recently asked to put in a proposal for the V&A. This was to create a number of posters for the Friday Night Late events they have on. I drew the V&A at night, covered in flamingos and silhouettes of lions having a party. Unfortunately the work wasn’t picked but it was lovely to have been asked to contribute something and to create an original image.

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Artist Interview: Tom Handy – Illustrator

Tom Handy IllustrationTell us about yourself, who are you, where are you from, and what do you do?
“My name is Tom Handy, I’m currently living and studying illustration in Bristol in the UK. I’m originally from Cheltenham where I grew up on a farm spending most of my time drawing.”

What’s your inspiration?
“I don’t think I’d be able to narrow it down to an “inspiration’ – I am influenced by many things – mostly visual – but also other types of things. I do keep a separate personal blog where I repost things that catch my eye and interest me (as well as post some of my own work too), so if anyone wanted to see what I’m into the blog address is http://www.ornafives.tumblr.com

Tom Handy IllustrationHow do you keep motivated?
“
I work quite fast so when I have a burst of motivation I can get things done and see the results fairly quickly, which helps me feel good about it and want to do more. I also post most of my work online as soon as I think I’ve finished it and any positive response keeps me going. I also like the idea of actually doing well for myself through what I do because I really love it and want to keep doing it.
”

Have any future aspirations that you’d like to share?
“One day I’d love to be able to create a giant 3D versions of my work (similar to KAWS’ companions) because I think my style would translate well into sculpture, and it would be amazing to see my work as real physical objects.
”

Tom Handy IllustrationTom Handy IllustrationWhat’s your dream project?
“To have a diverse and inspiring group of collaborators with a large budget for doing whatever we wanted. That would be awesome.”

What art supplies do you use?
“I’ve been starting my sketches with red crayon recently and I really like it, I don’t really know why though. But yeah I sketch my idea down and then ink it using fine liners and posca markers before scanning it in and editing and colouring it on Adobe Illustrator.
”

Tom Handy IllustrationAny other artists that you would like to recommend for others to check out as well?
“My housemates who are also on my course!
Jono Kamester
Willem Purdy
Karnn Bhullar
Amie Smart
Torrell Ward

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Artist Interview: Ken Iizuka – Freelance Illustrator

Illustrator Ken IizukaTell us about yourself…
I am Ken iizuka and I am a freelance illustrator and part time printmaker based in Brighton. Both my parents are Japanese but I’ve been bought up in many different countries excluding Japan (born in the Philippines, lived in Yemen, Nepal, Cambodia, Uzbekistan and the UK). What really drew me to pursue a career in illustration was the fact that you could potentially work from anywhere in the world. Having been a bit of a nomad all my life, I felt that this made sense. I’m not quite there yet in terms of success, but I’m putting a lot of hard graft in right now to get my work seen by everyone out there so I’m hoping my big break is just around the corner.

How did you get started?
I’m not really quite sure exactly how but when we were in Yemen (where my youngest brother was born) my mum used to do make this monthly newsletter to send out to the folks back in Japan. She used to get my younger brother and me to draw anything we wanted, (“It cant be rude!”) and then cut them out and stick them in. It also meant that there would be less graffiti on the walls of the rented houses. I think that had a pretty big influence on where I’m at today.

Illustrator Ken Iizuka

How do you keep motivated?
Motivation is something that’s easy if you have a commission to be getting on with but when there’s nothing it can be hard. I don’t really think that there is a universal method but from my experience thinking about my past part time jobs I did as a student gets me focused. I worked in door to door sales for a window and double-glazing company (a little soul destroying), a restaurant (I had too many accidents waiting the tables so I was allocated to just dishwashing), and scrubbing toilets and mopping the floor of a small supermarket at 6am in the mornings. The pay was measly and I always hated it. So I guess its mainly fear of not being able to achieve my dream and having to succumb to doing a job I’m just not suited to fires me up haha.

What do you hope to accomplish in your work?
Simply put: I want to be able to make a decent living doing what I love.

Illustrator Ken Iizuka

What, if anything do you tell your younger self?
Write yourself up a contract for both your client and you to sign before starting on a project. It’ll save you so much trouble when it comes for them paying up. Seriously!

What is the best advice you’ve been given?
I think a visiting tutor in my second year on my BA told me “Ken, you can do anything you want”

Any words of wisdom to aspiring artists who want to pursue a similar career?
If you want it badly enough and work your arse off, someone somewhere will notice it and help you out. I’m still on the chase and I’m not giving up any time soon.

Illustrator Ken Iizuka

What are your thoughts on art school?
Art school works only if you work for it. Too many people go into art school thinking “I’ll just do what’s asked, get a decent grade and then I’ll be an illustrator”. It’s a dream within a dream. If you don’t push and expose yourself to new things, you’ll graduate with a similar portfolio that you came in with. In the illustration business no one cares about how you came out with a 1st Class degree with Honours from so-and-so university. Also, use all of the facility available to you – after university access to a laser cutter/printing press etc is going to be hard to come by and expensive. You can learn so much from technicians and it is in your interest to take some time to get to know them. The print room technician was like a second mum to me and we still stay in touch.

How could the art industry get better in your opinion?
People who ask to get work for free in exchange of: “good publicity” or “it’ll be good for your portfolio” is the biggest threat to killing off young artists. If you asked the plumber who’s come to fix your toilet the same thing he/she’ll probably tell you where to stick it. Illustrators provide a service – we deserve to get paid like everyone else. And like everyone else it’s a skill that we’ve dedicated a lot of time and effort into.

wolf

Any other arists that you would like to recommend for others to check out as well?
Julia Soboleva – Her unique rendering of the human figure combined with her interesting use of colour makes her really stand out amongst the other young emerging illustrators.

Nele Anders –  I met her on my MA at Brighton University and her work is charming and tactile. She draws out little worlds that you wouldn’t mind renting a flat in.

Billy Mathers – I’ve done a few exhibitions with him and I’m always envious of the bold and spontaneous lines he is capable of producing. It also helps that he is also very fun guy to be around.

EVERYONE at Art School Disco – A collective of illustrators, print makers, ceramic artist and fashion accessory designer who’s been collaborating and exhibiting together ever since they graduated their BA in 2010

Follow artist, Ken iizuka, on Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr. You can also follow Jung Katz on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Tumblr. Or subscribe to us via our RSS feed or Bloglovin’. Share this post using the buttons below!

 

Artist Interview: Misheel – 11 year old Artist

abstract child painter MisheelToday, we’d like to welcome 11 year old abstract artist, Misheel to Jung Katz!

Tell us about yourself, who are you, where are you from, and what do you do?
I’m an American artist originally from Ohio. I draw, paint, and go to school. I started painting in 2003 when I was one.

abstract child painter MisheelHow did you get started doing what you do?
I started drawing my parents, cars, and cartoon characters. These were kind of abstract because my hand-eye coordination wasn’t very good. I started painting in my father’s studio, playing with paints. I liked mixing colors together with paint or crayons because I liked looking at all the layers.

What’s your inspiration?
I’m inspired by my environment- things that I see around me, picture books, and other artists. When I see a tube of paint I think- What can I make with that color?

abstract child painter MisheelWhat does your typical day look like?
I wake up, stumble downstairs, eat breakfast, stumble back upstairs, brush my teeth, get ready for school, go to school, come back from school, listen to music while I do homework and draw one or two pictures, eat dinner, brush my teeth, get ready for bed, and go to sleep. I sleep in on weekends and read all the time.

What do you hope to accomplish with your work?
I’d like for people to enjoy my work.

abstract child painter MisheelWhat are your thoughts on art school?
I would like to check it out.

abstract child painter MisheelWhat’s your dream project?
To make a really big painted mural on a wall inside a school. I read a book that told about how Frida Kahlo saw Diego Rivera painting a mural in her school, and I thought- That’s a good way for people to see a person’s work.

What art supplies do you use?
I use a regular HB pencil a lot, sometimes an 8B or 9B pencil made by Faber-Castell, and a Pentel Clic eraser. I also use Faber-Castell watercolor pencils, SoHo acrylics, cotton canvas, and all kinds of brushes.

abstract child painter Misheelabstract child painter MisheelAny other artists that you would like to recommend for others to check out as well?
Jasper Latane
Kumi Yamashita
David Kadas
Ben Javens
Alex Katz
Gerhard Richter

Keep up with Misheel’s lastest creations by following her on Tumblr! You can also follow Jung Katz on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Tumblr! Or subscribe to us via our RSS feed or Bloglovin’.