After studying graphic design at the KvB College of Visual Communication in Sydney, Nathaniel began honing his illustration skills and developing his own unique style.
The textures and preliminary artwork for each of Nathaniel’s pieces are developed using natural media such as pencils and acrylic paints. After digitising these raw materials, he puts everything together in Photoshop to perfect both the composition and colour.
With an earthy palette and tactile texturing, Nathaniel’s style is warm and playful, with a retro, dreamlike quality to it. Viewers can instantly relate to the universe he creates and its handmade feel.
Question: What led you to become an illustrator? Nathaniel: Art was always my favourite subject at school. The feeling of fulfilment and enjoyment in creating pictures led me along this path.Question: Did you study illustration at college? Nathaniel: I studied Graphic Design at KvB College, Sydney. The illustration classes were my favourites.Question: Where did you grow up? Nathaniel: I grew up in Sydney, Australia.Question: Do you have a childhood memory relating to drawing/art that you hold dear? Nathaniel: I was 6 years old and my class had to create a Pirate drawing. I won a competition and got to keep everyone's drawings. I still have it and cherish it.Question: Where do you live now and what drew you there? Nathaniel: I live in Sydney, Australia. It's home. I enjoy the diversity in culture and it has a fabulous harbour.Question: Describe your studio for us Nathaniel: It's a converted attic I renovated earlier this year. It's a great space. Small, but enough room to spread out. From the window, in the distance, I can see as far as the City, Sydney airport and glimpses of Botany Bay.Question: Who or What is your biggest inspiration? Nathaniel: Music is a big inspiration for me. Song lyrics provide a lot to draw from.Question: How do you get your ideas? Nathaniel: Usually getting stuck into the sketching and thought process. Sometimes my inspiration for characters comes from friends or family.Question: Do you keep a Scrapbook? Nathaniel: I enjoy drawing on single sheets of larger paper. I bind these pages together and create my own scrapbooks.Question: Nathaniel: Question: Nathaniel: Question: What are your interests outside of illustration? Nathaniel: Music, baseball, food.Question: What is the first record you bought? Nathaniel: INXS - Listen Like ThievesQuestion: Tell us about a favourite project you’ve recently completed Nathaniel: I really enjoyed working on my first commission for Ladybug Magazine illustrating the first snowfall of the year.Question: How much of your work is hand drawn? Nathaniel: About half. I sketch and hand paint textures. And digitally composite using photoshop.Question: Why is illustration such a powerful medium? Nathaniel: It is a visual narrative that words sometimes can’t explain.Question: What is the best use of illustration you have ever seen? Nathaniel: Sheperd Fairey's HOPE poster was great.Question: Who is your art hero? Nathaniel: There's so many! To name a few, Salvador Dali was my favourite artist all through high school. Tim Burton is another contemporary who’s work I love.Question: Who is your design hero? Nathaniel: Saul Bass and David Carson. I used to collect Raygun magazine and thought the layouts were amazing. But unfortunately over time they disappeared. Question: If you were not an illustrator, what would you be? Nathaniel: I don’t really have any alternative. I would loved to have been more musical.Question: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given? Nathaniel: Never burn bridges.Question: If you could travel back in time, who would be the one person you would want to meet and why? Nathaniel: It's not a particular person, but the New York music scene in the 70s would have been fantastic. CBGBs and The Peppermint Lounge would have been great places back in the day.
Walker Books, Hardie Grant Egmont, Scholastic Australia, Cadbury, Nestlé, Kraft Food, ABC Music, Little Hare Publishing
Archie and Kirk, Marrickville, Sydney
Outre Gallery, Melbourne & Sydney
Staedtler 4-8B pencils & willow charcoal sticks
Chilli Crab pasta
The Children’s Book Shop: NSW Australia