Alice Mollon Interview
Alice Mollon is a French-born, London-based illustrator (and occasional gif-maker). She create bright and bold digital illustrations for all sorts of briefs and clients, from The New York Times and TED, to teeny little not-yet-known startups. Her work is often people based, and relatively simple - Alice likes to distill complex ideas into easy-to-understand, joyful images.
I was recently almost trampled by elephants.
I studied Fine Art at University but when I finished, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do. So I found myself working as a Customer Experience Manager at a London based startup. Design and illustration gradually crept into my role, and at the beginning of 2016 I started freelancing in illustration (and some design bits). I’ve been doing that ever since (with fewer design bits).
It’s hard to pinpoint any one thing. Words and funny phrases, other artists and illustrators, children’s books, animations, observing the things and people around me. Often it’s just very ordinary, everyday things.
I try to work a 9-6ish kind of day, most of the time from a little desk space in my London flat. I’ll start off by getting any admin-type things out of the way, before getting straight back into whatever project I’m currently working on. I work pretty solidly through the day - I’m always impatient to get to the finished thing. But I always try to take a proper lunch break, and to not stay at my desk too long into the evenings.
Step. Away. Think of other things. Do other things. Anything but sit and stare at a blank sheet of paper.
That’s too hard - it’d be easier to name the worst but, I’m not going to do that!
I always begin by sketching out ideas in pencil and paper. Once I’m happy with a concept (or more realistically, once the client has approved a concept), I’ll scan it in and draw over it on the computer using Adobe Illustrator and a Wacom Cintiq tablet. I like to work digitally because you can make changes easily, which is a plus when doing client work. Outside of that, I love coloured pencils and paint markers (like Posca). Anything that creates a vibrant, pigmented mark.
The internet. Other artists. Children’s books.
Be prepared to spend a looot of time on emails, talking about pricing and contracts and timelines. And make sure that, every now and again, you take the time to step back and evaluate your body of work. It’s all too easy to get wrapped up in client requests, and end up pushed down a hole you don’t really want to be in.
Creating a children's book!
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