Sunday, October 6, 2019

Illustrator Quickie Interview: David Barrow

(Self portrait and two of the books David has illustrated)

What type of books do you illustrate?
Mostly, I've been illustrating children's picture books. I've also done some early chapter books as well as one-off illustrations for posters.
Where is your favorite place to illustrate?
I have a room in the back of the house where the walls are lined with bookshelves. Most of my illustrating happens there. But I use a IPad and do a great deal of drawing on that. So basically, I want to be able to illustrate anywhere.
What one piece of advice would you give future illustrators?
This sounds pretty predictable, but what I wish I had done more of growing up was practicing. It just kills me to think about all those hours I wasted sitting around as a kid when I could have been practicing. And, of course, there were years I completely abandoned art to get certain things done like raising a family and paying bills. When I look at other artists online much younger than me I can tell they took their art seriously.
Just draw ... allot!
In one to three sentences tell us about your latest book:
This fall "Alfred" by Stephanie Theban will be coming out. It's the story of a moose who loves to dance and ... well, you know how a moose looks. They just don't seem designed to dance.
Website or blog where people can learn more about you?
My website is I also post some kind of fun illustration on Facebook and Instagram each week as Drawing David Barrow.
What are you reading at the moment?
At this very moment I just started "Classic Atelier Painting: A Contemporary Guide To Traditional Studio Practice" by Juliette Aristides. I don't usually read 'how-to' books about painting, but this one starts off with the premise that those of us who were taught art in the later half of the twentieth century were simply told to buy the supplies and then "express ourselves," hopefully abstractly. I certainly started out at those schools which is why I am mostly self-taught. But for centuries artists studied under masters who started them off drawing from sculptures and learning the principles of shading, composition, and form. That's what this book is about.
I like to reread classics like "Huckleberry Finn" or maybe reprints of the Shadow pulp magazines of the 1930s as well as a lot of Bible study guides and things like that.

Thank you for joining us, David. Be sure and check out David's site.

Keep reading and dreaming,

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