Archive for October, 2009

Advertising and Publishing client directories now updated, printed and for sale!

Friday, October 30th, 2009

The Directories provide an inexpensive way to acquire contact details allowing you to promote your work to various types of illustration commissioners.

Both ADVERTISING AND PUBLISHING have just been updated October 09.

The EDITORIAL directory was last updated February 2009

There are three directories available: Advertising, Editorial and Publishing, providing hundreds of contact details of illustration commissioners. Each contact includes information about their identity and the style of illustration they are interested in, to enable you to contact commissioners appropriate for your own work.
.The handbooks are each priced £25 (AOI members) and £33 (non-members) and all are accompanied by an Excel spreadsheet on CD Rom of contacts addresses and pre-formatted labels for printing.

  • Buy securely online at the AOI Shop
  • Send a cheque made payable to Association of Illustrators:
    2nd Floor, Back Building
    150 Curtain Road
    London EC2A 3AR
  • Telephone 020 7613 4328 to pay with Visa/Mastercard or Switch.

Head to Head with Zara Wood aka Woody and Chris Long 5/11/09

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

As a finale to the ever popular Business Masterclass Programme the AOI are hosting an evening of discussion with practising illustrators Zara Wood aka Woody and Chris Long. Hosted by AOI Chairman Rod Hunt both Zara and Chris will give a short presentation and talk about their careers and then open the floor to discussion on varied topics such as ethics in illustration and getting paid on time, if at all!


When it was revealed to Woody that she has better than 20/20 vision, she put it down to excessive drawing. With a background in Fine Art, Brighton-based Woody produces work for publishing and fashion clients in Europe and Australia. Her Star Gaze collection became the most successful artist range Topshop have ever launched. Woody also designs her own range of limited edition art products and regularly exhibits.

As for Chris .. ‘I grew up beside the sea surrounded by crumbling Victorian architecture, a mile of golden sand, and three piers full of amusement arcades and sticky food. Cool, gliding shapes of 1930’s modernism nestled among the towering spaghetti girders of rollercoaster rides and cable cars. Wurlitzer-powered ballroom dancers floated on air, above a circus, zoo and aquarium. The audacity of Illuminated open-topped trams dressed as spaceships, grown men dressed as bridesmaids and a cup of tea for 5p is, for me, still powerful and vivid.

There’s a surreal incongruity to the place. Its brash, clash of colours and bold shapes have definitely informed my work and even now some twenty odd years later, I can still feel it buzzing away behind each and every brushstroke.’

find out more about Woody and Chris at and

5th November 2009, 6pm, Cockpit Arts Holborn, Booking Essential

Book tickets through

Jamie Hewlett at Dray Walk Gallery

Monday, October 26th, 2009

Located in the Dray Walk Gallery, part of the Truman Brewery, is Jamie Hewlett’s latest collaboration, “Under Water Colours”.

Teaming up with Oxfam, Jamie visited one of their projects in Bangladesh earlier this year, which became the basis for his drawings.

Jamie Hewlett illustrations

Probably best known for his work with Gorillaz, and a vibrant, explosive and colourful cartoon style of illustration, this exhibition sees Jamie tackle the difficult subject of Climate Change and its impact on some of the most vulnerable people in the world. In accordance with the seriousness of the subject Jamie’s style is appropriately muted. Relying on a strong tonal approach Jamie has created beautifully haunting glimpses into a situation that is far removed from a drizzly Saturday afternoon in East London.

Jamie Hewlett illustrations

Jamie gives the paintings a clever contextual reference by seemingly using the detritus of a flood as his canvases. Each painting appears as a found object giving them a strong, but delicately rendered resonance.

Jamie Hewlett illustrations

Alongside the paintings is a narrative explanation describing the situation in Bangladesh and the good work that Oxfam is doing for the refugees of the floods.

Unexpected and thought-provoking work, from an artist who has managed to re-define his own style.

Jamie Young

Inspiration: 3 Cartoonists consider

Saturday, October 24th, 2009

Every month or so at AOI Portfolios we invite three illustrators of a particular discipline to wax lyrical about their influences. Always fascinating to read about how inspirations feed into the output of practitioners and a lovely way too to make discoveries of artists you previously may have been unaware of.
This month Susan Hellard, Adam Larkum and Gary Barker, all cartoonists, speak of their inspirations. Go here to read their column. Previous contributions can been seen here.


Drawing The Line: Political Cartooning in the Age of Offence

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

We attended a debate at DACS last night on political cartooning, what is offense and freedom of speech? Very ominous considering what was happening on Question Time last night. This event and the topics raised will be subject of an upcoming article in Varoom magazine.


The Panel:
Sarnath Banerjee – artist, film-maker; graphic novelist
Dave Brown – political cartoonist
John Kampfner – chief executive, Index on Censorship
Brendan O’Neill – editor, spiked; blogger, Guardian Comment is Free
Martin Rowson – political cartoonist; illustrator and writer
Chaired by Dr Shirley Dent – communications director, Institute of Ideas


The Big Book Of Contemporary Illustration

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

The new Martin Dawber publication “The Big Book Of Contemporary Illustration” is now out, containing over 1000 illustrations by 400 international illustrators (some AOI members and personnel).


3X3 features AOI members

Thursday, October 15th, 2009


The new issue of 3X3 has a feature on renowned AOI member Sara Fanelli. Sara is interviewed by Jeff Fisher and shows work from recent projects.


Also interviewed in the Icon section of this issue is AOI patron Brian Grimwood, talking about his early work life and setting up his agency.


Metro newspaper criticises Illustrator

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

The Metro newspaper has thought it appropriate to dedicate a half-page article to criticising illustrations used by Carla Bruni on her webpage. The French illustrator Alice Dechelette’s work has been described as “straight out of the playground rather than drawing school”.


The illustrations depict several famous friends of Bruni that the article goes on to describe as “the Obamas look a bit scary while Mr Sarkozy’s image looks like a police composite of a wanted criminal”. What do you think? Is it time that “free urban newspapers” such as the Metro have the final say in what is and isn’t good illustration? Or just a fantastic bit of free publicity? Click image to read the full article online

Prize Winners judging

Monday, October 5th, 2009

The judges for Images 34 met at the AOI office last week for the second round of judging which selects the prize winners for each section. Penny Garrett from the Economist and David Rowley, Art Director, are seen here with the AOI’s Sabine Reimer.


Keep an eye on for information on when selected entrants and prize winners will be informed. Not long now!

“Where’s Stig?” by Rod Hunt

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

New AOI chairman, Rod Hunt, has illustrated Top Gears’ new publication, “Where’s Stig?”. Sure to be a massive seller, Rod devoted a substantial part of the year to creating the amazingly detailed spreads.


We’ll be reviewing the book in the NoteBook section of the upcoming issue of Varoom.