Based in Rome, Italy, Daniela Volpari is a freelance art director and children’s book illustrator. She graduated in 2009 from the Scuola Internazionale di Comics (International School of Comics), which is quite possibly the best school I have ever heard of. Ms Volpari landed her first published work the very same year creating editorial illustrations for Un duetreStella and Grazia. Also in the same busy year publishers Paramica released a children’s book based on Giacomo Puccini’s opera La Bohème, retold by Fbrizio Silei and beautifully illustrated by Ms Volpari. Since then Ms Volpari has work consistently. She has received multiple awards and regularly exhibits her work at Gallery Nucleus, most recently taking part in the Imaginary Friends event.
Ms Volpari’s gouache paintings are warm and playful. They are harmonious in tone but often dynamic in composition. I particularly love her illustrations for Oliver Twist. They have a very “Illustrator’s Lounge” feel to me, that may just be because of all the top hats. You can find Daniela Volpari on twitter, facebook, and etsy, and find more of her work on her website and blog.
Krenz is a freelance character designer base in TaoYuan, Taiwan. He has provided artwork for video games and book covers as well as contributing to the upcoming Masters of Anatomy book.
One thing that is obvious looking around Mr Krenz DeviantArt page is his superb ability with colour. They are soft and harmonious, but yet striking. They give his characters real depth and an imposing presence. You can find more of Mr Krenz’s work on his blog, and Facebook page.
In Sketching from the Imagination: Fantasy, 50 talented traditional and digital artists have been chosen to share their sketchbook works. Ranging from Hollywood film concept designers to talented students, each artist is handpicked from a vibrant international online art community. From doodles and sketches of creative creatures to fully rendered drawings of invented worlds, this book explores how 50 artists develop their ideas to create incredible images.
The Book Review:
A follow up to Sketching from the Imagination, Sketching from the Imagination: Fantasy is a chunky square size paperback that showcases a plethora of illustrators. Many of whom I was being introduced to for the first time. Like many artist, I love flicking through other people’s sketchbooks. There is an element of freedom and expression in an artist sketchbook that rarely translate into their commercial work which make them so captivating.
Sketching from the Imagination: Fantasy has around 6 pages per illustrator and cherry picks drawings from each of their sketchbooks. In this regard it does not quite feel like thumbing through their personal sketchbook pages, warts and all. It is more flaunting how beautiful and creative a sketch can be. Each illustrator has a short description about themselves and their work. They also talk about their inspirations, techniques and materials. I particularly enjoyed reading the variety of materials the illustrators use, which it should satisfy any of us with a stationery fetish. Interestingly, and perhaps slightly fruitless, a large amount of the features claim to use only a HB pencil.
As mentioned in the editor’s note, there are 50 feature illustrators, all unique in style. There were a few illustrators whom I feel are of particular note, such as Wylie Beckert, George Guo, Paul Sullivan, and Sean Andrew Murray.As well as Adonna Khare and Jim Pavelec who show off some marvellous fully rendered work that can quite easily be the finished article.
Overall Sketching from the Imagination: Fantasy is enjoyable to flick through introducing a host of artist whose styles should satisfies all tastes. I found it especially useful reading the insight from the individual illustrators. The vital upshot that comes from reading the book is it raising the bar of your own sketchbook, with many of the illustrators setting a rather high benchmark to follow.
Illustrator and designer Noma Bar’s work has placed him in high demand. His client list is longer than my Amazon wishlist with the likes of The New Yorker, The Guardian, Random House, The Economist and Wallpaper* making repeat appearances.
Born 1973 in Israel Mr Bar graduated from the Jerusalem Academy of Art& Design before moving to London in 2001. Throughout his career Mr Bar has pushed and stretched the boundaries of negative space. Crafting hidden meaning with juxtaposing elements his images demand you always look twice. His thoughtful illustrations have earned him multiple awards, not least the prestigious D&AD Yellow Pencil award in 2012. Mr Bar also released two books titled Guess Who?: The Many Faces of Noma Bar and Negative Space, both of which received high acclaim.
Jakub Rebelka is a Polish freelance illustrator and comic creator. Born 1981 into a family of artist, when Mr Rebelka was 15 years old, he received the Junior Grand Prix at the Polish International Comic Festival. In 2002 publishers Kultura Gniewu released his first comic book, Doctor Bryan, to positive reviews.
Well known in Poland for his distinctive style, Mr Rebelka has painted many public murals in Gdansk, Sopot, Warsaw and Bremen. He also provided background and character design, as well as illustrations for the animated cutscenes for the acclaimed video game The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings (2011). Mr Rebelka is currently working alongside writer Yohan Radomski on a graphic novel called City of Dogs.
You can find more of Jakub Rebelka’s striking and offbeat illustrations on his tumblr.