EXCLUSIVE: Daisy de Villeneuve On Breaking Into The Industry As An Illustrator

25 April 2014

illustrator Daisy de Villeneuve At 'Pick Me Up' graphic design festival at Somerset House

See illustrator Daisy de Villeneuve in action [Getty]

This Saturday 26th, Daisy de Villeneuve (www.daisydevilleneuve.com), one of London’s most beloved and vibrant fashion illustrators, takes over Pick Me Up graphic design festival at Somerset House. For the fifth year running the contemporary graphic arts event will showcase the best illustrators and designers via a veritable assortment of showreels, talks, workshops and a photo booth with an illustrative twist. Renowned for her childlike, colourful felt-tip portraits and deadpan narratives, Daisy has worked with everyone from Liberty to Boots, Globetrotter to Nike. So, budding designers, don’t miss your chance to see an icon of illustration in action! Grazia Daily sat down with Daisy ahead of her festival takeover to glean her top tips of the trade.

You're London born and bred but you now live in Paris. What do you love about these two cities?

London is more like home comforts to me; friends, museums, pubs & landmarks. Paris is a beautiful city, very laid back, great restaurants, easy to get around by foot & cultural too. Paris & London are both different but similar. 

When did you realise you wanted a career as an illustrator?

I studied fashion & fine art at art school and it wasn't until after I graduated that I thought about illustration. It was because my work was going along that route it seemed to make sense. 

Why did you decide to study at Parsons School of Design in NYC and Paris?

I'm half American and had the opportunity to study abroad. Plus, I always had wanted to live in those 2 cities. 

What was the most important lesson you learnt at Parsons?

To be professional.

illustrator Daisy de Villeneuve At 'Pick Me Up' graphic design festival at Somerset House

If you could give your younger self one piece of advice what would it be?

Not to worry so much, but I still do...

Does that advice still ring true for today's budding illustrators?

It's difficult being freelance as you don't know when you'll get work. I always advise to get an art agent to help. 

What are your top tips for breaking into the industry today?

Work experience, networking, having a website, social media etc. 

Do you have any more books in the works?

Yes, a new book called 'I Should Have Said' out early next year, published by Hardie Grant. 

What are your favourite materials to work with and why?

Felt tips which have become my signature style. I've been using them since I was 3 and have stuck with them. I like the texture that they make on the paper. I use a brand called Prismacolor that I get in the USA. They come in a huge assortment of colours. 

Can you let us in on what you'll be up to at your takeover at Pick Me Up on 26th?

I will be colouring in some of my 'London' themed designs.  

If you want to get involved, head to Pick Me Up at Somerset House Embankment Galleries. The event is running until 5th May 2014 and is open daily from 10.00 – 18.00. Buy tickets at somersethouse.org.uk 

By Katie Jane Rose http://katierose.co.uk@katie_jane_rose



All posts must obey the house rules, if you object to any comments please let us know and we'll take the appropriate action.