We are excited to welcome back Gwynne Jones as a part of our new ‘Just Picture This Illustrator’ Interview. She is a talented illustrator with several picture books published by EK Books, including Finding Granny, which we interviewed her and Kate Simpson about recently (read it here!). Thanks for joining us again, Gwynne! 🙂
How did you come to be an illustrator, and what do you like about illustrating for children?
I have always drawn, and in 2012 I left an office job to concentrate on getting my profile out into the world. Two years later I got my first contract with EK Books, and am still illustrating with them.
What I like about drawing for children is being able to show and challenge ideas about what things should or appear to be, and to add a twist of humour or danger, I love drawing live for kids, and have a lot of fun with requests to draw odd things.
Who are your favourite artists or book illustrators that have made an impact on you as an artist? In what way have they influenced you?
I can honestly say that I appreciate the difference in most artists work, and find them all inspiring to a degree. They influence me to do different things, layer and use colour.
A current favourite of mine is Caroline Magerl, I love her emotive style and her line work. Another I loved was Quentin Blake’s work. I think his simple line telling a story really attracts me.
Finding Granny by Kate Simpson is due out in late June 2018 and The Chalk Rainbow by Deborah Kelly was released in July 2017.
I also have illustrated the Sugar and Spice Collection (2016) and Don’t Think About Purple Elephants (2015).
What projects are you currently working on?
I have just finished a commission for a MND research website, and am about to start a new book with EK Books by Michelle Vasiliu.
What does your art space look like – organised or chaotic?
Slightly chaotic, I always like to clean up before a new project though. I manage to produce work from where ever I have to, currently from a bedroom!
What are your top tips for aspiring illustrators? Have you received a valuable piece of advice, and from who?
An online gallery of your work really helps, and draw all the time. People love videos of drawing too.
Life drawing classes are great for drawing people well. I don’t think you ever stop adapting and honing your skills. Lots of interesting ideas are gained through connecting with other illustrators, but in the end you need to do what works for you.
What else do you love to do besides art? Anything unusual?!
Nothing really unusual, but my other job is driving Uber and Shebah, so I get to meet a huge variety of people and have some great conversations while earning money. A nice change from working alone.
Thanks for posing for our ‘Just Picture This Illustrator’ Interview, Gwynne! 🙂
Gwynneth has been drawing and painting and making a mess for quite a while, and is unlikely to stop. She has exhibited in libraries, hospitals and sold works, and held visits with school children following her six books she has illustrated from 2015 to 2018, and had a lot of fun while showing children the process of illustration, and drawing strange critters.
Gwynneth also draws works for own enjoyment, and takes them to art markets often to find their rightful owners.
Go to Gwynne’s website.