Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Q&A with Jake Blanchard

Jake Blanchard is one of the 8 designers to win the wrapping paper competition. Also a winner of the previous project, his designs never fail to be fun and interesting - kind of like 'Where's Wally', the more you look the more you find. He's also a tessellating genius! This Q&A will be followed daily by the other 7 artists.

What is your name?
Jake Blanchard

Where do you live?
North London

Where and What did you study?
Illustration at Brighton Uni

What do you do day to day?
Freelance illustrator, also run a small publishing company and record label

Where do you get your inspiration from?
Nature, film, animation and mythology.

What are your tools/ what medium do you work in?
Drawn, screen print, Photoshop and anything else that seems appropriate.

What do you think about Frinton Press's wrapping paper design competition?
Fun competition, challenging to work to such a small scale.

What are you working on at the moment?
Gig posters for The Black Twig Pickers, poster for a brewery, a screen printed book, some zines, my next record, a zine show/ fair and drawing with felt pens.

Being able to rely purely on illustration as a source of income is a really rare treat. Are there any moments though that you get disheartened, or annoyed, by the illustration world? why? and what do you do to pick yourself up?
Obviously it's fantastic to be able to make a career out of being an illustrator, but of course it has it's drawbacks, when work doesn't come in it can be very discouraging, and often I'm not sure how I'm going to pay rent or eat but I always find a way. I always try and keep my own projects on the go and that really helps keep me going, I get a real satisfaction from releasing a record or working with other great illustrators on a zine or something. I think I'll always run my own projects, it's really important to me.

With who, or on what would you most like to work?
Well I've been lucky enough to work with some fantastic people already, particularly through my Menagerie Music and illustration project, I'm always amazed at how receptive people are to this kind of thing. But I guess I'd really love to do a label for a bottle of ale, I do like ale, there's a whole heap of breweries I'd love to work with. Illustration wise I'm hoping to collaborate with Stu Kolakovic at some point, I really think he's doing some amazing stuff.

Where can we see more of your work?
My website-, my small press and label-, and on skateboards for Habitat, t-shirts for Howies, posters for Bonnie 'Prince' Billy and in many an independent zine/ record shop.

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