Last week I went to have an in depth look around the BA (Hons) Illustration rooms at the PCA Summer Show. I have written previously about the BA (Hons) Game Arts exhibition and the BA (Hons) Animation exhibition (click the links for my posts).
Though Sophie Clark‘s main work is centred around illustration (and some pattern designs) the project that she has been working on and has displayed at the Show includes these cute, fluffy, hand made monster toys. The monsters come from the children’s book she has been working on, There are Monsters in My Head. The ears of the cuddly monsters crinkle and the large one has a squeaker and a rattle. My little sister (who is nearly three) really loved these toys and was fascinated with them.
Jake Cutler‘s concept art on the story of King Arthur makes me feel like the environments he has illustrated are cold and mysterious. My favourite image is the illustration on the top left. I love the way the distant cliffs and mountains are covered in mist but you can still see there is a ravine down the middle.. What could be in there?
I talked to Nathaniel J. Hall while at the college about his artwork and about his experience on the course. He mentioned that an animation he created (also on display) was inspired by his “thoughts and feelings about coming to Plymouth” and pointed out that the animation starts off with negative words and illustrations but gradually becomes happier and more positive. He also told me that before enrolling in the Illustration course, Nathaniel visited and looked around a previous Summer Show at PCA and was inspired by what he saw. His artwork is normally monochromatic, and Sunshine is one of three screenprints on display inspired by his favourite films. I love how this one is dramatic, like an explosion.
Anita Yip‘s work is inspired by anime and manga, and she incorporates lots of geometric shapes into the backgrounds and characters that she illustrates. A lot of her characters also have animal traits or features, for example this character is wolf-like. Anita also has on display prints covered in tiny hieroglyphic symbols, and her zine Meep! which tells a funny and endearing glimpse of her life.
Joe Mouzourus was also available to speak to when I visited. Joe said he has “always wanted to be an artist since secondary school and that with illustration, “you can go in any direction”. Joe has displayed a collection of posters of films with strong female leads, including this one of Rey from Star Wars VII. I really like the dry brush style background and in the foreground it looks like he’s used pencils to create a detailed, shaded sketch which really stands out.
Nicola Owen‘s work has cute and simple lineart, colouring and shading. This display contains pages from her comic My Visit To Grandma. The artwork is adorable but the story is really sad and thought provoking. Nicola also has some minizines/comics on display and her overlapping cat pattern is clever and humorous.
Cosmo Lloyd‘s work is inspired by medieval and fantasy themes, and her work centres a lot around character design and comic art. She is the author of a webcomic called Uprooting, which is about “self worth and family issues with a sprinkle of medieval” and a printed preview of Uprooting is on display at the Show. She uses lots of colours in her work, and creates very detailed and well developed character concepts.
Briony Difford specialises in illustrating book covers, and her work is inspired by Asian folktales. Her illustrations are beautiful and detailed, yet she keeps her colouring simple by using separate individual shades, and leaving out any highlights or shadows.
Stephanie Parnell made this artwork for a small vinyl record sleeve (also on display was a poster version of the same piece). I find Legs Occult: Dark Rituals creepy and dark but also beautiful.
Amber-Louise Crawford’s creature illustrations are full of life. She combines simple, sketchy lineart with heavily shaded and blended colouring. This creature in the photo above looks like a forest spirit.
There are so many artists I haven’t covered in this post who had work on display, but today is the final day of the exhibition and I wanted to show how brilliant the work on display is so that if you’re interested in the Summer Show, you can take this last chance to check it out for yourself! I will most likely write a second post about the Illustration show later covering some of the things I missed here, so come back later to look for that.