From the Vault: Illustration Friday interview with Philip Fivel Nessen

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While sifting through the blogroll, I came across this interview from August with recent Illustration alum Philip Fivel Nessen. He talks about the development of his style, his methods of finding work, and what inspires him. Here’s a brief excerpt:

How did you get started in the illustration field?

The first time I noticed illustration was a Henrik Drescher drawing in the New York Times book review. It was an Uncle Sam head, with spider legs, and I think lasers for eyes. It had people running through the spider legs. I think that’s where my interest in visual arts started. I find Monet sort of boring. As for doing work, I got a few jobs just through my website before I started doing any promotion or meeting with anyone. Then I sent out postcards and took my portfolio to a few places and got some good advice and some more jobs. And then I did an Illustration Friday interview.

How did you find your style? Has it changed since you started?

At first it was a very calculated thing. I spent like a month cutting things out and taking notes. Just sort of figuring out where I could fit into the illustration business and be sort of novel but also reflect stuff I really like. I also wanted to sort of look like a late 1950s, early 1960s illustrator. After I started drawing more new stylistic things popped up in response to different things. Thick lines, thin lines, abstract people, figural people. Whatever. Things are still working themselves out. I sort of hope I end up like one of those guys comfortable enough to do work that’s not the same story over and over. There is definitely a fine line between hopeless and multi-dimensional.

Read the rest of the interview here (and make sure you take a look around the rest of the Illustration Friday site for great interviews and image galleries).

(Image by Philip Fivel Nessen)

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