Why did you become an illustrator?

When I was about four years old I drew my first picture – of a duck. I was so thrilled that it looked like how I wanted it to look, and it impressed the grown ups as well. I found myself surrounded by drawings and paintings, in magazines, on tv, on cards and books and toys – they were part of my environment, and somehow they made life more interesting. When I found that I might have a talent for drawing, I stuck at it, and through the years it was the only area in which I was encouraged (though Mr. Stott thought I might have had a good career in drama in Grade 5!). Music was the other thing that I loved, but I had absolutely no talent in that direction (though I could play a mean tune on the recorder). So I thought being an illustrator would be a good option – lots of exciting projects, the possibility to work anywhere in the world, the chance to make the world a bit more of an interesting place, the chance of one day appearing on a Corn Flakes box. How many of these things have come true? Well, I’ve managed to travel a bit (though not asd much as I would like), I’ve had a few exciting projects now and then, and a few people have said they’ve enjoyed my work, I got an interesting email from a shaman once, and I almost got to do a biscuit tin – so I haven’t done too badly. Notice however, that I haven’t mentioned money…I also enjoy working in the realms of popular culture, creating images of strong imperfect women in contrast to the manipulated images that get passed off as real photos. When I do draw perfect women, they are presented more as wistful ideals that are obviously painted, rather than anything to realistically aspire to.

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