Today we had the chance to again hear from a visiting speaker. This time it was Illustrator Sam Arthur from the publishing company NoBrow. At first I was hesitant as to what I could take away from an Illustrator, but it soon became apparent that Sam and his company had grown way beyond just Illustration utilising a range of methods across multiple disciplines. With offices in London and New York, working with 350+ artists Sam and his company with publish over 38 books this year alone, with the majority coming from a children’s book publishing subsidiary called Flying Eye Books. The most successful of them all Hilda the Troll, has gone on to become so popular Netflix will be producing an animated series based off of it next year. What NoBrow was done since it’s creation that has allowed it to succeed so well is adapt to different disciplines. Sam himself started as an Illustrator, and while he has no moved away from that side of the business himself, in between he used a range of mediums such as graphic design, printing and binding to get to where he is today. What he highlighted is that while a book may be ‘created’ by an illustrator, it takes more than just them to put it together. For example, a graphic designer may be responsible for creating the cover or the laying out the type. It highlights how working across disciplines and doing things outside of your comfort zone can be of great benefit and again reinforces the idea that you shouldn’t limit yourself to one skillset. Something Sam also touched on was how many of the artists and designers he works with initially find the idea of creating a full comic somewhat off putting, opting to create only a few pages instead. However, they often comeback wanting to next time create full comic as they enjoyed the process and outcome so much. With this in mind, I think it’s important that in the future I shouldn’t shy away from new things as you never know or when or how you can discover a new passion or interest for something.
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