Jake Holmes is a recent BA Illustration Graduate of Norwich University of the Arts, during his time at University he was able to work on projects involving illustration, print making, collage, painting, drawing and digital artwork.
‘It was during my final year of study that I realised that my true passion was in traditional drawing. I try to draw on a large scale when I can so that every mark I make can be expressive. I feel that observation is the most important thing and so I like to keep realism in mind when drawing, but using the texture of the paper and the boldness and somewhat uncertainty of charcoal and pastel, I try to keep excitement and movement in my drawing.’
‘I think that my main influences within have to be the master painters or the renaissance. Although I do love many contemporary illustrators, my fascination with the power of chiaroscuro and composition in the works of artists such as Caravaggio and Rembrandt will always inspire me. Considering artists of more recent years, I really love Lucian Freud; the way he is not afraid to take a risk with a single brush stroke to render part of his subject is something I try to keep in mind when drawing. I have recently fallen in love with the paintings of Mitch Griffiths; he takes the ideals of western consumer culture and applies the amazing skills he has learned from studying the old masters to create impossibly life like art work. I also love the work of Laura Lipton, the extent of her drawing skills are beyond belief.
My work during my final year of study also encompasses a satire of our conformist and consumerist culture which I think stemmed from far too many nights watching Brass Eye and Nathan Barley. For my personal work I want to carry on with this concept, criticising our society is perhaps as large a passion of mine as drawing is. I am currently trying to maintain a healthy balance between working on pieces that reflect my personal ideals, and some more commercial work. Almost all the work I produced for my degree show was portraiture, so I am currently expanding my portfolio to show the world what else I can do. I am currently working on a piece to submit to the website They Draw and Cook; artists are able to submit an illustrated recipe of their choice for publication on the website and hopefully in the fourth instalment of their book. I am also experimenting with a little bit of new media, adding coloured paint washes to areas of a drawing before rendering it in charcoal and pastel, adding yet another dimension to my work.’