Steve Simpson on the role of the client brief and starting off as an illustrator

We will have a separate blog post between now and 10th May (Outstanding By Design) on Steve’s work with Mics Chilli, his food producer partner on the day.

In the meantime found this really nicely shot and post produced short interview with him. I have included some snippets from the interview underneath.



Illustrator and designer

Steves uncle was a cartoonist with Beano and Dandy and that is where it all kicked off for him.

He ended up doing technical Illustration in college and then TV animation in Manchester (Danger Mouse)

After 8 or 9 years he ended up back in Ireland and illustration. He hit the ground running with digital and is appreciative of the opportunities. But he does create everything with a pencil – drawn and redrawn. Then scanned into Photoshop.

Behind each piece of work is the client brief and the message they want to convey. It always has to be grounded in a brief – the client identifies the problem which they need solved. That problem solving is difficult. Recently Fade St menu cover very successful. The brief was a busy menu cover and he was given a lot of freedom in the execution.

For recent graduates

Starting off in illustration? Find your hook to stand out. First couple of years are a learning curve when you develop your drawing skills, your observation skills, your getting the message over skills.

With briefs they need to be inspiring yet practical.

He reckons that the balance of illustration and design is really important. Approach someone in a farmers market, understand their requirements and design for them.

More information and the full line up for Outstanding By Design here.