Ënnji is French illustrator represented by both Karine Garnier and illozoo. She creates stripped-down illustrations focusing on basic shapes and limited colours. Occasionally adding in textures such as watercolour or ink splats. Roughing up otherwise pristine shape adding some movement. Ënnji’s illustrations play on negative space. She regularly balances visible shapes with ones that are purposely obscured, compelling the viewer complete the image themselves.
If there is a comic on the shelf right now not coloured by Jordie Bellaire, I have not seen it. This weekend, during a quick comic shop, I saw her name on Moon Knight, Convergence Shazam, The Kitchen, Injection and probably a bunch more I did not spot. Jordie Bellaire has been a familiar fixture of our comic shop shelves for much of the last two years. So prolific and wonderful is Ballaire, that last year the industry showed their appriciation in the form of an Eisner award. Which in 22 years only 10 other colourist have earned, Dave Stewart and Chris Ware claiming over half of the awards between them.
Bellaire has worked with close to all of the big comic publisher on many great titles such as, Pretty Deadly, The Manhattan Projects, Nowhere Men, Zero, and Hawkeye. Along the way, enhansing the pages of many of my favourite current comic artist including Tom Fowler, Chris Samnee, Ramon Perez, Sean Murphy, Becky Cloonan and Emma Rios.
Perhaps you have heard of Colorist Appreciation Day, well, you can thank Bellaire for that too!
I started collecting comics in a bygone time called the 90s. Back then there was one stamp on the covers of comic far more important than the Comic Code Authority, which was Liquid!. Many of my favourite titles had it and thanks to their distinct logo, one could not miss it. It was the first time I took a real interest in colourist and that apprieciation has grown ever since. I thought at the time this was a shared feeling, however, jump forward 20 years and it seems like the industy and perhaps its audience have not shown colourist the same recognition. In a tumblr post by titled, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it any more” directed at an unnamed fan convention, Bellaire laid it out bare, stating the importanace of all professionals that work in comics, underlining the vital role that colourist play. The post gained the attention that the subject deserved and resulted in fans calling for a #ColoristAppreciationDay on Twitter and opened a discussion that continues today.
Jun Cen is an illustrator, animator and designer. Cen received a bachelor’s degree in Printmaking from Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts in China, later, he moved to Baltimore where he completed his MFA degree in Illustration from Maryland Institute College of Art.
Working as a freelance illustrator from 2009 and throughout his studies. In 2013, the very same year that he graduated from MICA, he won the AOI Illustration New Talent Award. His work has been selected for a number shows including The Society of Illustrators Annual Show 56 and The AOI Illustration Awards Exhibition. His animations too have been shown at multiple film festivals including Illustrative 13 Festival and Indie Memphis Film Festival.
Currently based in New York he has worked with international clients from England, France and China. His work has illuminated the pages of Elle, Nobrow, The New York Times, and Wissen. It is this diversity of work that keeps Cen motivated. When questioned, if he would prefer a steady job over freelancing, this is what he said:
It is more stressful […] But I hate getting used to the same mode every day. Dealing with different clients is more challenging to me. I feel fulfilled whenever I finish a project.
Jun Cen’s illustrations, digital and traditional, are always sensitively drafted. They utilise harmonious tones and subtle touches of texture to give a feeling of calmness and quietness, making much of his work close to hypnotic.
Based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Yesica Pogorzelsky is an Illustrator and Character Designer. She has worked extensively in animation, predominately as a Character Designer, but also on Storyboards and Animatic. In 2012 she worked alongside creative agency La Comunidad on their series of adverts for TCL’s new LED TV. Then in 2013 she stretched her storyboard muscles on Volkswagen “Think Blue” campaign.
Presenting the work of Columbian 3D artist Qarlos Quintero. Graduate of Jorge Tadeo Lozano University, Quintero has worked professionally as 2D and 3D illustrator since 2008. Currently he is a Concept Artist and 3D Modeler at mobile games developers, Brainz.
Quintero’s personal project Arya and Nymeria really stands out for me. It is a blending of both his 2D and 3D styles, allow the forms to look flatter and be more expressive with simplified shapes. You can find a healthy dose of more Game of Thrones inspired art, among other work, in Quintero’s ArtStation portfolio. You can also find Qarlos Quintero on Tumblr and Society6.