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Thursday 25 January 2024

Meet The Illustrator: Evie Barrow

Evie Barrow

Describe your illustration style in ten words or less.
Hand-drawn with heart, celebrating colour, kindness, texture and imperfection.

What items are an essential part of your creative space?
Pencils, paper, sharpeners, erasers, macbook, scanner and a solid lineup of creative, crime and psychological podcasts.

Do you have a favourite artistic medium?
I love experimenting with mediums. Graphite and coloured pencils are probably my all time favourites. Beyond that - all pastels - soft, hard, wax, water-soluble, oil - I love them all.

Name three artists whose work inspires you.
Alice Neel, Ben Shahn, Pace Taylor 

Which artistic period would you most like to visit and why?
There are many - ahh, to be a time traveller! I’d love to visit the Renaissance period to chat with brilliant polymath Leonardo. Visit the early-mid 20thC, UK to meet the Bloomsbury group at Charleston, and similarly Heidi, Melbourne when it was also residential.
Who or what inspired you to become an illustrator?
A love for drawing, 80’s Saturday morning cartoons, artful picture books and a love for books and printed pages.

Can you share a photo of your creative work space or part of the area where you work most often? Talk us through it.
Sure, the area I work most is at a desk in our spare room. It doesn’t have great natural light, so I always have a lamp on. To the left of the desk are art-draws with a printer and scanner on top. The cushions on the floor belonged to our cat. This photos is from February. She passed in May. I still miss her heaps. I chose this photo because the chaos on the desk is a better representation of how it looks when mid-project. In reality I just tidied. Our house is old, and this room gets cold. The heater to the left of the desk and rug on the floor help keep it a bit cosier. The shelves above the desk have a mix of artworks, toys, books and mediums I like to have within reach. On the wall are original-artworks and prints by various artists, including Jodi Wiley, Yoshitomo Nara, Rachel Victoria Hillis, Jess Quinn, Sandra Eterovic. On the desk, an old-school lightbox, lamp, MacBook, pencils, markers, papers, notebooks, water, coffee, snacks, mess.

What is your favourite part of the illustration process?
I really enjoy problem solving, research, character development and working out colour palettes.

 What advice would you give to an aspiring illustrator?
Be kind to yourself and become friendly with your inner-critic as they’re hard to evict. Practice drawing, heaps. Draw what you love. Be open to learning. You will learn something from every client project or personal piece you do. Keep going! It’s a long game.

Evie Barrow is a character-driven illustrator specialising in picture books. She studied and worked in graphic design for 13 years before focusing on illustration. Her first published illustrated book was in 2019. She has since made 11 with Walker Books, Hardie Grant, Scribble, Affirm Press and more. As a kid, she borrowed Meg and Mog a lot. Today, she still enjoys stories about witches and cats. She loves cats, the colour green, and walks under towering trees.

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