Interview with Glenn Jones
With his fifteen years of experience, intelligent and humorous style, graphic designer and illustrator Glenn Jones from New Zealand, answered our questions on building a career, discovering his talent, finding inspiration, and the process of creating his pop t-shirt illustrations. Let's have a chat with Glenn.
1. Welcome to Vectortuts+ Glenn. Can you please introduce yourself?
Hello, I'm Glenn Jones from Auckland, New Zealand. I'm a freelance designer and illustrator, and a partner of Glennz Tees.
2. How did you get started in your design and illustration career?
I got a job as a junior designer and illustrator at a newspaper company in the early 90's. I started hand drawing images and scanning them in, and then in my spare time taught myself how to use Adobe Illustrator 3, which was much different than the version we have today. I loved the clean result of vector art and I've tried to evolve my style ever since.
3. Did you get an education? How did you discovered this talent?
Yes, I did a design course but there were no computers, it was all old school markers. Practice I guess, would get into work early, and stay late and over time. I just tried to get better at how I drew stuff
4. Do you draw on paper first and then transfer them to computer or use only tablet?
I draw everything on screen - I draw a quick rough first, then convert that drawing to guides before drawing my final illustration over the top.
I do have a tablet, but I draw most of my designs just with a mouse. I learned to draw in Illustrator with a mouse, and then started using a tablet few years later, so I don't mind either way
5. Can you describe the design process? How do you start and end?
It's fairly simple really - I get an idea when I'm doing something else, and then I usually forget it. Then if I ever remember it again, I just sit down and draw it. I'm fairly impatient so I like to try to finish it ASAP, then I'll leave it for a day or two, and revisit it. Then I'll do any refining and if it's for my tees it usually goes straight here: site.glennz
6. Which software are your favorites? Which software and which tool do you like most?
I love Illustrator! and pretty much just use the Pen Tool. I like the refinement you can get with the bezier curves.
7. What are your future plans? For example, will we see toy versions of your illustrations? Can you share some of these plans with us?
I really have no idea - its a constant evolution and I'm lucky to be teamed up with some guys that are always keen to try something new.
So yes, hopefully there will be all sorts of product additions in the future.
8. Your illustrations have a different iconic style. Most of your works have humorous and rational aspects. What is the reason for this kind of drawing?
I think alot of that style was influenced by the jobs I had to do when I first started using Illustrator. Part of my job was to create editorial graphics and graphs. I really like the clean simplicity of info graphics and I think that has followed through into my style today. I often draw something and then when I see it a couple of days later I'll remove stuff to simplify as much as possible - try to make it clear and easy to get.
9. All your works are illustrations. Do you have other type of works too, for instance web design, info graphics, etc? Or do you prefer working only on illustrations? What kind of works would you do, if illustration did not exist?
Yes I'm a packaging and corporate identity designer, but I enjoy the illustration side of things more. If there wasn't illustration, I'd like to be an industrial designer - create products or furniture, something like that.
10. Which artists inspired you? Why? What did you see in them? Which websites do you visit for inspiration? Which movies affected you most?
I don't really have any favorite artists, there are so many talented people around, even just on a site like Threadless - there is some mind blowing talent and diverse work on there. Websites I look at often would be: notcot, Behance, ffffound, Core77. I'm not sure if any movies have effected me too much, but I do like to call upon well known pop culture to put my spin on it.
11. Thank you for answering these questions Glenn. Do you want to tell something to our illustrator and designer friends?
Thanks for the interview, and to people who've contacted me directly thanks for the kind words and feedback I get! If anyone ever has questions I try to help when I can.
Glenn on the Web
Subscribe to the Vectortuts+ RSS Feed to stay up to date with the latest vector tutorials and articles.