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Katharine Asher

Katharine Asher

I have worked as a freelance within illustration and design for many years, specialising in figurative work. My early formal training at Harrow College of Art focused on strong traditional drawing skills, the ability to think in three dimensions and a thorough understanding of anatomy and movement. This has proved to be the backbone of my skill base, enabling me to attract work from a wide variety of commercial sources from publishing and advertising to film. I continually evolve my style which keeps my focus fresh and my work in line with commercial trends.
Question: Personal Highlight of 2009? Katharine: Playing percussion in the London Festival Carnival Procession as part of Bloco do Sol Nascente. Question: What drew you to illustration/design? Katharine: I was brought up on a farm on Dartmoor. I used creative play to fill the social void and now I make a living from my favourite past time, how lucky am I!! Question: Do you have any formal design training? Katharine: Diploma in Graphic Design; Torbay College of Art & Design, LSIAD in Illustration; Harrow College of Art / London, BA Hons degree in Fine Art; UWE Bristol - specialising in sculpture. Question: Where do you live now & what drew you there? Katharine: I live in Bristol, I left London when I married my ex husband who worked at the Natural History Unit for BBC Bristol. Question: Where is your studio and can you describe it for me? Katharine: My studio is in the original stable block belonging to my house. It's 2 stories high and I work in the converted hayloft, sharing the building with 3 other businesses. Question: How do you get your ideas? Katharine: The commission is the inspiration for each job.
Question: Do you collect anything? Katharine: I’ve always collected bones since I lived on Dartmoor, mainly animal skulls, they are very beautiful especially those of birds. I also collect shed skins from reptiles, insects, snakes, spiders etc. That may sound a bit weird but it feeds an interest in growth and transitional states, my own work revolves around this theme. I also collect masks from around the world and percussive instruments that are made from natural objects such as seeds, husks, gourds etc. They are intriguing objects and have unique sounds. Question: Do you keep a scrapbook? Katharine: Not as such, but I collect stuff that interests me and I pin it on the wall of my studio for inspiration, so I guess my wall is my scrapbook. Question: What are your interests outside of illustration? Katharine: Recreationally, I have always danced. This has taken many forms from Salsa to Samba to West Coast Swing and Jazz etc. I also play Surdo and Caixa in 2 samba bands, one of which is also choreographed so this marries my love of percussion with my love of dance quite nicely. (It also keeps me fit, illustration is a very sedentary job). Question: Who is/are your art & illustration hero/es? Katharine: Louise Bourgeois, Cathy de Monchaux, Rebecca Horn, Giacometti, Tamare de Lempicka. Question: If you could travel back in time which period would you visit & why? Katharine: 1920’s. I just love Art Deco and the era in general.
Max Factor, Elizabeth Arden, BBC, McClelland Whisky, Pulse Films, Mail on Sunday, JWT, Armani

Café : Tarte on the Gloucester Road, Bristol
Gallery : The Hayward, Tate Modern and Saatchi Galleries
Art Equipment/Tool: 6B pencil /compressed charcoal
Food: Savoury
Drink: Gin
Travel Destination: Brazil