“It’s the first time I’ve been to an Illustration conference, so that’s quite exciting. I think it’s probably hearing interesting things and meeting interesting people. In a subject that’s quite dear to my heart, I’m a practising illustrating artist, yeah I’m kind-of fascinated by the subject, to see other people’s points of view in something that I do and maybe hopefully make me think about things differently or I’m not sure really. I’m ready for it.
My talk at this conference – it’s a subject that I’ve been fascinated but I won’t go into too much detail, it’s about the fuzzy and foggy interaction overlap of art and design and how illustration is kind of featured in that, and everyone’s got a different point of view basically of how we look at this thing.
What is illustration? How do we study it? What are we trying to get out of it? So in my studies, I’ve always done art and design courses, so my last degree, graduating in ’96, it was a degree in art and design so I did fine art and graphic design because I’m interested in how they connect, because you’ve got all these tribes, you’ve got artists, photographers, textile designers, but often they don’t come together. Architecture, furniture designer, everyone’s doing the same thing in a different way, so I’m really intrigued about how all these things interact. My talk is about that, it’s based on a talk I did last year to some third year students here, just to make them think about their practice and about what its about, and it sounds kind of heavy, but if you cant talk about your work or understand it, how do you expect anybody else to feel the vibes?
What’s interesting about Illustration is that it literally is the subject that’s between art and design. I’ve been teaching the subject for fourteen years, which sounds like a long time! I wouldn’t say I teach people, I guide people, I have conversations with students, I’m not trying to tell them what to do, but from the subject, people that do children’s books or graphic novels, people that have gone into fashion, gone into film making, making sculptures, it’s so varied what that subject is about basically, so that’s what keeps me interested. That’s what my talk deals with, an open view to that basically, it might hopefully create a conversation and see what other people think of it.”