Rosanna received First Class Honours when she studied Illustration at the University of the West of England, in Bristol.
There are two main elements to Rosanna’s approach. The first stages of her work are created using natural media – pencils for the line work, and gouache paints, applied to separate layers using a light box. This, and the rich papers she uses, gives her work its unique, handcrafted feel. Images are completed digitally, using Photoshop to clean them up and add the finishing touches.
Delicate lines and gentle textures are woven together to depict elegant, elongated figures and forms. She loves to experiment with scale, and nature usually plays a big role in her art. Rosanna chooses a limited palette for each piece, sometimes punchy, sometimes subtle, but always in keeping with the brief.
Question: What led you to become an illustrator? Rosanna: How could I miss the opportunity to continue inventing worlds, getting lost in narratives, thinking sideways and exploring the outskirts of reality as a grown-up?Question: Did you study illustration at college? Rosanna: University of the West of England, Bristol.Question: Where did you grow up? Rosanna: Shropshire, England, in the middle of nowhere, with rolling hills, rivers and hay-bales.Question: Do you have a childhood memory relating to drawing/art that you hold dear? Rosanna: My best friend and I wrote a story called "Spooky" about venturing into the basement of my house. My dad scaring away a monster with a tennis racket took up the majority of the plot. We wrote it up on a typewriter, illustrated every page, and made it into a book which we still have today.Question: Where do you live now and what drew you there? Rosanna: After studying illustration at Bristol UWE, I stayed in the city for its buzzing atmosphere and creative charm. It may be time to uproot though!Question: Describe your studio for us. Rosanna: I have a beautiful studio in the iconic Hamilton House in Stokes Croft. I share a cosy, sunlit room with four illustrators who I massively admire and love to bits. The whole building is full to the brim with art, music, dance, food & drink, and events.Question: Describe the view from your window. Rosanna: There have been two magpies building a nest in the tree outside, who have provided hours of entertainment due to their incompetence/ unyielding determination.Question: How do you get your ideas? Rosanna: I find maintaining a balance between being in touch with the world and getting lost in thought is important to stay inspired.Question: Why is illustration such a powerful medium? Rosanna: It can immediately illuminate, clarify and augment an entire block of text or concept.Question: What makes a really good client brief? Rosanna: A good balance of being specific enough to spark ideas, whilst allowing lots of space for creative freedom.Question: How much of your work is hand drawn? Rosanna: Every element is hand drawn or painted, then put together digitally to allow for any required modification.Question: Who is your art hero? Rosanna: Golden Age children's book illustrators; Kay Nielsen, Edmund Dulac and Arthur Rackham.Question: What's the best advice you've ever been given? Rosanna: Don't let reality ruin your day.Question: If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go? Rosanna: Plitvice Lakes in Croatia, with a swim in the Korana River.Question: If you could travel back in time, who would be the one person you would want to meet and why? Rosanna: Zelda Fitzgerald – I adore her way with words, and I'd hope she'd take me on a wild night out dancing the Charleston!