'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Thursday 21 September 2017

Meet the Illustrator: Jules Faber

Describe your illustration style in ten words or less.
Crayon clutched in fist with tongue poking out in concentration!

What items are an essential part of your creative space?
My bookcases! I love books and comics and graphic novels. Being able to admire the spines in the frequent moments of just thinking is really inspiring.

Do you have a favourite artistic medium?
I love simple, old-school pen and ink. I always have and always will.
Name three artists whose work inspires you.
Just three? I’ll try, but three hundred would be easier. Brian Bolland, Chris Riddell and Norman Rockwell.

Which artistic period would you most like to visit and why?
The Renaissance would have been awesome! The world was emerging from a dark age into one of enlightenment when scientists and artists were practically the same thing.

Who or what inspired you to become an illustrator?
A wonderful man from the moon called Mr Squiggle. I saw him on TV when I was four years old and thought I was witnessing some sort of magic. Which I was. By the age of ten I’d decided I wanted to draw for a job, but I still had a long way to go, so I practiced every second I could.

Can you share a photo of your creative work space or part of the area where you work most often? Talk us through it.
Well, you can see I have a split desk where I can turn from writing or Internet researching images to my old animation light-box. I keep a good blank area for piling work with whatever book I’m on at the time. On the shelves are inspirational toys I like or use as reference. Out of shot on the other side of the light-box are my stationery drawers and electric pencil sharpener. I don’t need a lot of space, but like to not feel crowded. It’s good to keep a tidy workstation so I can produce my best work.

What is your favourite part of the illustration process?
I think it’s the rough stages. I work in animation pencils, which are erasable and don’t smudge like lead does. This is the part you can be as free and sloppy as you like, or delicate and refined (I’m usually the former more than the latter!) Everything you’re drawing is for the first time and so it stays fresh.

What advice would you give to an aspiring illustrator?
Practice till you can’t practice anymore. Then practice again and again and again. Practice is the true secret to success in anything and it is never finished. Even professionals still practice because we can all still find ways to improve. Also, never give up. It can be a hard field to break into and you’ll get rejected time and again, but just remember that every rejection is one closer to an acceptance. Just hang in there and never give up.

Jules was born into a big family and started reading and drawing at age four. He has worked in animation, comic strips, editorial cartoons for newspapers, live caricaturing and as a TAFE teacher. Today he works primarily in children’s books. He is married with a 10 year old daughter.
You can visit Jules' website for more information.