“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at AUB; the Uni has a wonderful creative vibe in a relaxed town, which really suited me. The Illustration course is amazing and really supports you in terms of where you want your practice to go and doesn’t limit you at all.” – Allie Oldfield
I’m a third year Illustration student at the Arts University Bournemouth. I grew up in a small, countryside town in West Sussex which sparked my love of drawing and creating stories from the creatures and landscapes surrounding me. Fantasy and myth were a big part of my childhood; from reading, games or film I loved anything involving the mythical. These days I’m still drawing dragons and wizards, albeit a lot better than when I was 10!
How have you found third year so far? Was it as big of a step up in terms of work as you thought it would be?
Third year has been the most challenging but has also been the most defining year for me. We’ve had two units which were basically ‘do what you want’, which was intimidating at first but then it really made me reflect on the creative I wanted to be and where I wanted to focus my practice.
What was your route through education to your first design role?
I’m still in education and haven’t achieved a design role yet, but I’m working on a comic for my final project that I’m pretty excited about, so hopefully that’ll lead to more opportunities!
Have you enjoyed your time at Arts University Bournemouth? Is it a university you would recommend?
I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at AUB; the Uni has a wonderful creative vibe in a relaxed town, which really suited me. The Illustration course is amazing and really supports you in terms of where you want your practice to go and doesn’t limit you at all, so of course I would recommend it.
What advice would you give to those students in year 1 & 2 in preparation for their third year?
I’d tell them to try and get involved in lots of interesting projects so your portfolio is teeming with work. You have one year to do what you want, so make work that you enjoy doing and don’t stress out about the big picture.
What has 2015 got in store for you and beyond?
That’s a hard question! I’m going to pursue my Illustration career further by creating more stories and characters; I’d love to get a book published some day. But there are many different things that interest me like animation and games and all these inspiring creative industries that in a few years time I may be working on something I hadn’t initially expected I’d be involved with! Also like a lot of people I’d love to go travelling some day; particularly to the USA as being half American I’ve always felt a pull to live there for a bit.
Do you have any favourite people to follow on twitter?
I love Jon Klassen’s tweets and also anything by Nobrow and Mondo. These are but a few of my favourites, but the list could go on!
Where do you find the most inspiration and ideas from when starting new projects?
Inspiration takes the forms of many things for me; I love flicking through my collection of comics and books but I also find a lot of my inspiration though blogs, animation, games…it’s a mixed bag! I’m also lucky enough to be surrounded by lots of talented Illustrators at Uni who always provide inspiration for me.
What are some of your favourite comics right now?
Chemin Perdu by Amélie Fléchais is one of my top favourite comics at the moment; it’s a beautifully rendered comic involving a forest adventure, a giant owl and dancing hedgehogs. So it ticks all my boxes! Other than that I love Shaun Tan’s ‘The Arrival’ and a lot of things Nobrow publish.
Away from working what do you most enjoy to unwind?
I wish I could say I go on long walks and look at the sunset but I’m quite happy sitting on the sofa with a tea watching David Attenborough enthusiastically talk about a snail. Life in The Undergrowth was a particularly good series. I also like reading.
What are the most played albums in your iPod right now?
Iron & Wine’s ‘Around the Well’, Simon and Garfunkel’s ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’ and Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Nebraska’ are a few albums I love, but my music taste is normally quite eclectic.