There’s more to it than just draw­ing stuff. Multi-dis­ci­plined il­lus­tra­tor: Different clients, ed­u­ca­tion work work­shops, lec­tures

Factual Illustrations

Factual il­lus­tra­tion re­quires a lot of dis­ci­plne, but there is­n’t as much com­pe­ti­tion as in other fields. Illustration is used in all sorts of places:

Newspapers, Magazines: The client wants some­thing that has a style, but still has to be rec­og­niz­able. Illustrations are not al­ways purely fac­tual, can com­bine fac­tual and artis­tic el­e­ments. the mind un­shacked, new sci­en­tists”

Design and Products: Illustration for pack­ag­ing, ad­ver­tis­ing. Some are fac­tual (draw what the prod­uct looks like), some are not (coke, ce­real, sell­ing an idea of what you can be when you buy the prod­ucts)

Fashion il­lus­tra­tion: Even though fash­ion il­lus­tra­tion is of­ten quite ab­stract and fan­tas­ti­cal, fash­ion il­lus­tra­tors of­ten have a strong un­der­stand­ing of anatomy, good life draw­ing skills


Illustration as a tool to ex­plain step-by-step processes Illustration is uni­ver­sally un­der­stood, you don’t need to speak a cer­tain lan­guage in or­der to fol­low drawn in­struc­tions. The Lego in­struc­tion man­ual is a good ex­am­ple for this and is prob­a­bly a big rea­son be­hin Lego’s world­wide suc­cess.

Science and Medicine Science would­n’t have been able to ad­vance the way it did with­out de­tailed sci­en­tific il­lus­tra­tions. Med­ical il­lus­tra­tions are still im­por­tant for ed­u­ca­tion: Photograph of an open body can be very messy (fat, sur­gi­cal tools, blood), il­lus­tra­tion can cut all of that out and fo­cus on what’s im­por­tant

Illustration as a tool to per­suade and con­vince us of stuff Political pro­pa­ganda posters, gov­ern­ment leaflets Not al­ways for good rea­sons, and not al­ways in a way that tells the truth

How I got into the il­lus­tra­tion busi­ness

Page from a graphic novel, a naked figure holds a steaming cup against a black background across 9 panels.

Medical Illustration

Medical il­lus­tra­tion has been around for a long time com­bi­na­tion of sci­ence and art, al­lows you to work with sci­en­tists ver­sal­ius - di­s­ected brains of crim­i­nals da vinci anatomy sketch­books (wellcome col­lec­tion) by mak­ing il­lus­tra­tions, he’s try­ing to un­der­stand more about anatomy gray’s anatomy 100 years of bio­med­i­cine, had to draw 100 ob­jects that changed med­i­cine

Medical Art ed­u­ca­tion trust (MAET)

MEAT Website

Long, for­mal train­ing process to get into med­ical il­lus­tra­tion (if your stuff is used to teach med­ical stu­dents you can’t make mis­takes) at­tend di­s­ec­tions, do di­s­ec­tions, shadow doc­tors in hos­pi­tal, sur­gi­cal an patho­log­i­cal stud­ies

Hunterian Museum

Medical il­lus­tra­tors do all sorts of stuff, like Illustrations for text­books, mod­els for teach­ing

5 things you should­n’t do as an Illustrator

  1. Steal - be in­spired by yes, copy nope
  2. Name your files some­thing like fuck­_y­ou_s­tu­pid­_­client-2-copy.psd
  3. Loose re­ceipts for ma­te­r­ial, you need them to claim ex­penses, bill your clients later
  4. Start work with­out be­ing clear on fee, time pe­riod and copy­right
  5. Lie to peo­ple about how close you are to fin­ish­ing work

5 things you should do

  1. Believe in your­self and your style
  2. Be good at ad­min: emails, ac­counts, re­ceipts, tax stuff
  3. Keep a per­sonal sketch­book on the side
  4. If you can, do a bit more than a client is ex­pect­ing, its gonna get you hired again
  5. Be kind to other il­lus­tra­tors, re­fer jobs you can’t do to them. It will come back to you at some point


Do you get mad from all the tiny hatch­ing?

I did get RSI from one of my pro­jecs. You need to have a good setup, have a de­cent desk, good chair, light­ing and stuff so you dont get RSI, also don’t take on jobs that are gonna drive you in­sane.

How long is the course at MAET?

You can take up to 6 years, most peo­ple do it in 2-3 years. You have to learn the anatomy of the body the same way a med­ical stu­dent would, which takes a long time

How do you go about main­taing a net­work with other il­lus­tra­tors?