I am delighted you want to find out more about me personally, however please talk to my agents about commissions as they handle all of that for me. I look forward to working with you.
Steven Van Hasten

Steven Van Hasten

About
Impressions
Interview
Growing up in Courtrai, an old market town in West Flanders, Steven showed prodigious talent as a child, creating his first illustrated story about a knight at the age of six. Now based in Gent, he’s successful illustrator with a string of top-name clients. Even so, he still attends life drawing every week with his friends.

Steven has a Masters in Graphic Design and Illustration from the Sint-Lucas School of Arts in Gent. He has collected over 10,000 comic books.

Approach


When illustrating a book, Steven will read the story and let it settle for a week while he plays with the ideas and sketches concepts. Paintings begin with him blocking out the composition in opposing shades – a dark purple versus a paler green, for instance. Using pencils, ink and acrylics, he paints in layers to create depth and texture.

Style


Strong contrast in form and colour, plenty of detail and a variety of brushstrokes are characteristics of his work, and Steven’s characters always have an oddball charm to them.
Question: What drew you to illustration/design? Steven: As soon as I could hold a pencil I started drawing on every surface I was able to. All my studybooks, walls of my parental home and tables. Nothing was safe from my pencils. So it was obvious very quickly that I would do something with drawing. I never wanted something else.Question: Do you have any formal design training? Steven: I studied Graphic design and illustration at the Sint-Lucas school of art (Ghent) where I earned my Master degree. Question: Where are you originally from? Steven: I was born in Kortrijk (Courtrai in English), an industrial town in Belgium, famous for the battle of the golden spurs in 1302. Question: Where do you live now & what drew you there? Steven: For now I live in Ghent (Belgium). I came here for studying at art school when I was 18 and never went back to my home town. Ghent is a living city with many advantages for creatives. It has a rich cultural scene and there is always something going on in the many pubs and theatres.Question: Where is your studio and can you describe it for me? Steven: My studio is a small workers’ house which I have completely restored, I just finished it a few months ago and am very happy with it- it's my safe haven, my sanctuary. I designed and made all the furniture myself. Each level of the house has his own atmosphere, white rooms for drawing and painting, colourful rooms for relaxation and reading.Question: Who or What is your biggest inspiration? Steven: My biggest inspiration is the people I meet on the street. The neighbourhood where my studio is located is full of strange and interesting people. I just have to catch them in my head and draw them when I come back. Daily life is an inexhaustible source of inspiration.Question: What are your interests outside of illustration? Steven: Motorcycles. I love to take a ride, it keeps me relaxed. And hiking in nature, I like the loneliness in deserted areas. I always come back with lots of energy.Question: Tell us about a favourite project you've recently completed. Steven: Illustrations for an educational visitors centre. The illustrations filled complete walls, stairs and windows. It took me several months but the results look really impressive.Question: Who are your art heroes? Steven: Jheronimus Bosch, a dutch painter from the 15th century, because he had a completely insane imagination. And Francis Bacon, he was a great painter, who was able to show the human psyche in grotesque portraits.Question: Who are your musical heroes? Steven: Clanadonia, Guns 'n' Roses, Pogues, Levellers, Metallica. Question: If you were not an illustrator, what would you be? Steven: That is a difficult one. Maybe a furniture designer or a landscape designer.Question: What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into illustration? Steven: Do it! And keep your eyes open, the most important thing about illustration is to have a good look at the world. See the strange things in life, the unexpected. Get out of your safe area!

SELECTED CLIENTS:
Reader's Digest, Averbode publisher, Abimo publisher, ZeKookt, Die Keure publisher, Waelkens, Seedfactory, EDG

Favourites
Born: Kortrijk, Belgium
Residence: Gent, Belgium
Education: Sint-Lucas School of Arts
Studio: a small cottage
Magazine: H art
Holiday: definitely Scotland, I love nature there
Inspiration: the night, driving with my motorbike, discussions with friends
and a good beer
 
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