Jon Arne Berg [jonarneberg]
What is your specialty in illustration?
I don't reallt have a specialty, I try to be as versatile as possible, not getting too comfortable with one single style of illustration
What are your regular clients like? What do they expect from you?
I'm pretty new to the freelance business, but the clients I've worked with so far are open to suggestions and have wanted me to put my own touch on the work I've done.
Is there a web address where we can see some of your work?
Have you completed formal art studies, or are you self-taught?
I recently finished a BA in Visual Communication from the Oslo National Academy of Arts. Before that I did two years of graphic design studies at Westerdals School of Communication here in Oslo.
How did you get your first full assignment? What did it involve?
From a friend who recommended me. The task was to design some t-shirts for a Norwegian clothing brand.
What past or present day illustrators do you admire most?
I love the work of so many people, and I'll try to name a few: Tomer Hanuka, Asaf Hanuka, Ping Zhu, Jessica Walsh, Craig & Karl, Jesse Auersalo, Sac Magique (all illustrators represented by Pekka really)
How similar are your current drawings to those you did as a child?
They have some similarities. I still like to draw slime monsters and fat people. But I guess they're not all that much alike anymore.
What was your favorite comic book as a child?
I think it's a draw between Ninja Turtles and Spiderman.
Do you have a particular style, or does it vary a lot?
It varies a lot when it comes to commisioned work, but if you look through my sketchbooks I definitely think I have a clear style of drawing. It's mostly human-ish characters with sheep's eyes in various situations.
What is hardest to draw?
What type of music do you listen to while you work?
Most of the time I put on a random playlist one of my friends has made on Spotify or I do the same from a record label's SoundCloud account. I also listen to podcasts from a Norwegian comedy radio show from time to time.
Do you have a favorite work of art?
Yes! I love all of Egon Schiele's work, but my absolute favourite is Seated Male Nude (self portrait). So so so good! Actually, all his work is amazing, but part from this painting I really love his pencil and gouache work the most.
What do you do when a client simply says "I don't like it"?
Then I'll make new sketches and/or concepts and see what they'll say next.
What new techniques have you been experimenting with lately?
Not really new, but I'm getting back into brush and ink stuff. And I recently had my first experience with a risograph printer. Not first hand, but I made the illustration and sent the files over to London and waited with my fingers crossed. It turned out great, so that's something I'll defenitely do more of
What part of your work do you do on paper and what part digitally?
90% of the time I sketch on paper. If it's urgent I sometimes do it directly in Photoshop. I also prefer inking with actual ink, but on bigger jobs I've had to do it on the computer to save time.
What research do you do for your illustrations?
Sometimes the work doesn't require any research, but most of the time I try to find pictures with the right mood, be it other people's illustrations or art, or just nice photos or colors.
Do you have colleagues with whom you share techniques, tricks, ideas, etc.?
Yes. I always discuss work related stuff with both my friends and girlfriend. I find that those discussions often teach me just as much as when I sit alone working.
Do you have any specific goals as an illustrator?
Not specific really. To get better, get more work, bigger clients, but also work with smaller companies.
What illustration web sites do you frequent?
And some other also, but I can't remember them.
What are you working on now?
Right now I'm in the middle of a pretty big job, but I can't really say what it's about. But it's fun and include trolls.
What advice do you have for someone who likes to draw and would like to make a living from it?
Draw more, keep a sketchbook with you on all times. And take risks. You'll never be awesome without taking risks. I want to take some risks soon aswell, part from starting up as a freelancer.
Jon Arne Berg