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Thursday 22 July 2021

Meet The Illustrator: Katrin Dreiling

: Katrin Dreiling

Describe your illustration style in ten words or less.
Quirky, European, friendly, whimsical and hopefully with an out-of-the-box focus on things.

What items are an essential part of your creative space?
I would say gouaches and coloured pencils, Photoshop and Procreate but a lot of coffee and my fluffy dog Loki are definitely essential, too.

Do you have a favourite artistic medium?
I can never decide which medium I like best and it seems to vary according to my mood or how much time I have in that moment. However, the first thing I usually grab just to put rough ideas down are either an ink pen or my beloved Palomino Blackwing pencil.

Name three artists whose work inspires you.
They change a lot, too, but three of my all-time favourites are Russell Ayto and his quirky perspectives. 

Then Felicita Sala’s and Beatrice Alemagna’s playfulness and childlike visions and techniques. I can never get enough of their work. Tim Burton’s work has been an influence as well but that’s already four…..

Which artistic period would you most like to visit and why?
I recently have formed a deeper interest for the Victorian Age mainly because of the detailed and restricting clothing. Living in that time would be a different matter. I don’t think I could fit in without inadvertently causing scandals…! I do stretch my pinkie out when I drink tea, though.

Who or what inspired you to become an illustrator?
The joy in creativity, watching the world through a different lens and reading cartoons was always there but I think my three children brought my wish to be an illustrator for children’s book alive. When they were small, I could see how much picture books had an influence on them and it deeply fascinated me. That’s how it all started and it has certainly not been an easy journey but I feel that it was a privilege to be able to show my children how you pursue a dream and never give up.

Can you share a photo of your creative work space or part of the area where you work most often? Talk us through it.
My studio at home could be mistaken for a cupboard in regards to its size or a storage in regards to its chaos. I know exactly where everything is and declutter regularly, though. I love my desk with its inbuilt lightbox and that it is situated right in the middle of the house…and close to the coffee shelf.

What is your favourite part of the illustration process?
I love when all sketches and storyboard are done and I can start on the coloured illustrations. I usually wrap up the process by digitally enhancing or texturizing my work and this always fulfills me completely as I see everything coming together. When I have finished a project I often go and reward myself with new art supplies…I like that part very much, too 😊

What advice would you give to an aspiring illustrator?
Find someone whose opinion and experience you trust to ask questions and then try not to look left or right and just do your own thing.

Katrin Dreiling is a teacher-trained illustrator based in Brisbane who loves to come up with quirky creations that inspire children to get creative themselves. She has illustrated several picture books, and her first author/illustrator work, A Perfect Pig, has just been released. She contributes the Meet the Illustrator posts for Kids' Book Review and just recently took the role of SCBWI QLD Illustrators Coordinator. Katrin is represented by US literary agent Essie White at Storm Literary.

For more information, please visit Katrin's website or follow her on instagram or artfol.