I always use the same sketchbooks. I used to be way too precious about them and want everything to be really polished. But now I just want to keep filling them up for the rest of my life, so I have thousands when I die.
They’re from Seawhite in Brighton and literally about a pound each.
I draw all the elements in black and white separately. Generally I rough things out in pencil before I start inking or using acrylic. I also cut out the shapes sometimes too, because I prefer the tatty line to a hand-drawn line. Then I put all those elements into Photoshop, to build the composition and to do the colour work. I never do any colour work physically.
I just buy whatever brushes are cheapest, because I destroy them. I like really thin ones, but I forget to wash them and they get all matted. I tend to buy them from Cass Arts or Seawhites in Brighton.
I also use a lot of white ink. I’ll paint something black and then draw in white over it, rather than doing it the other way around.
I think I established the style I work in during the second year of university, although hopefully it’s a little more refined now.
I tend to do all my emails when I first get in. They always take longer than I expect. I’ll then set aside a day to do all the proper admin things. But I’ll draw all through the week.
This is my new set up, so I can have the drawing and the computer separate. It’s really nice. I used to just have a pile of sketchbooks in front of my keyboard but now I have an empty fresh side to draw on and the computer side is just for computer things.
I think I’m better at breaking up my time, now I’ve divided my space. Before, I’d just be checking my emails, or wasting hours on the internet.
I listen to radio when I’m working. Radio 4 in the morning, but not beyond The World at One, then This American Life. Sometimes a bit of Radio 6
I’m definitely a collector (well, hoarder) so I’m always surrounded by a lot of stuff. A lot of my designs and illustrations are quite symmetrical, and that’s part-and-parcel of the way I display the stuff around me. A lot of the ephemera I collect is because I’m drawn to the colours, more than the type, or whatever.
I do put my own prints up – partly because I have so many it seems a shame for them to just sit in a drawer. It’s also good at encouraging you when you feel a bit rubbish.
This is Bert. He lives upstairs. Having a dog around is so lovely. Any animal is good – there’s some scientific study that shows stroking an animal lowers your stress.
To see more of Alice’s work, visit her website.
Photography by Nick Scott, @narcsville.
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