Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Travelling and working reflections

I've spent the last half a year travelling the world - llustrating, living, loving, drinking, swimming, talking, listening and being. It's been pretty great. Here are some of the things I've learned.

1) You can't escape your inner voice. You can go to the other side of the world, it will still be there. The trick is to accept it, and love it and it floats away.
2) Most people in the world are essentially decent. And the people who seem not to be are yearning for something, happiness, money, love, and it makes them seem like dicks.
3) Illustrating in hostels is HARD! I need a desk and private space.
4) The world is more beautiful than I can comprehend. From Peru to Japan to New Zealand. I don't understand how there is so much beauty here on earth.

5) Be kind to people, even if they aren't kind to you.
6) Everyday is an opportunity to find something amazing - stop planning and just let the day enfold.

That's all I've got so far...but I'm sure I'll have more.

Lots of love,

L xxx

Monday, 28 September 2015

How a Late Paying Client Can Ruin a Freelance Business

Aaaah dear. This again. This AGAIN.

As an artist and a freelance illustrator, I've always known the key differences in the two. As an artist, I work by myself, for myself. I create work that I love. Art that makes me calm and happy. And the way I am able to make art is by creating illustrations for different clients. 

And I love it.

There's nothing better than getting a challenging brief and really pushing yourself, and then getting it right. Also as an illustrator, I end up working more collaboratively. My job is to help visualise what the client wants, and sometimes I have to pull away and do my own thing to get the best results. 

It's all cool.

So the job's over, and weeks turn into months, and no payment shows up. This becomes really tricky. A freelance budget is constantly precarious. You're relying on the goodwill of your clients to pay when they say they will, and if they put it off, forget to pay you, or flat out refuse by dodging emails or losing your invoice, then you're in trouble.  

A late payment can be the difference between just getting by, and wracking up extortionate bank charges. A late payment can be the end of the line for an illustrator. 

It's hard to imagine for many people not getting a pay check every month. Every month, on the dot, you'll get paid. You may have had a slow month at work, it may have been one of the most stressful, but you know each month that the money is coming in. 

This is not the case for freelancers. 

I can budget all I want - things can look rosy. Jobs are lined up and are being illustrated. And then, the silence after the job. The long months of worry as you watch your careful plans for your business' survival crumbling. 


Because your huge corporation of a client wants to hang on to your bill just one month longer. Screw the illustrator. She'll be fine. We don't care any way. 

Well - here's the thing...a late payment is death to a freelancers business. A business that they've spent years nurturing with loving hard work and long hours.  

So clients, when you've commissioned an illustrator...just pay your damn bill. 

Thank you.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

'The Magical City' published today!

Here it is! My first book with Penguin 'The Magical City' hits the shops today!

Here is an interview I did with the lovely Neil Bennett at Digital Arts Magazine about the book. 

Interview with Digital Arts Magazine 

Photo credit : Digital Arts Magazine

Friday, 27 February 2015

A letter of love to the staff at Piccadilly Waterstones

A few weeks ago I went to Waterstones in Piccadilly seeking something. Recently, I've gone through a through a few difficult life events, things that I accept and am dealing with but are affecting me in different ways.

I came to Waterstones to find books. Obvious, I know but I needed a certain kind of book. A funny, warm, loving book - the kind of book that we've all read that made us fall in love with reading in the first place. My only stipulation? For the love of god, not chick lit. But I was welcome to anything and everything else. 

Piccadilly Circus, LMC
I went to the main desk and met Darcy. I told Darcy what I was looking for - a book to help me switch off, engage with something else, take my mind off things and basically give me a literary hug.

Darcy was incredible. 

We went through the shop, collecting her colleagues as we went, who all had their own recommendations for me. It warmed my heart to be met with such passion, kindness and joy for books and people that Darcy and her colleagues showed. 

I bought 'The Eyre Affair' by Jasper Fforde, 'High Fidelity' by Nick Hornby and 'How to be a Woman' by Caitlin Moran. 

I wanted to thank Darcy and her colleagues for giving me a lift that day, and showing that in this busy city, people still genuinely care about each other in a real way and are willing to open their hearts to strangers to help them out.

Thanks Darcy - I really loved High Fidelity.

Lizzie xxx