Winsor & Newton recently had the pleasure of partnering with The Association of Illustrators to sponsor The World Illustration Awards. Hundreds of entrants at all levels took part from all over the world. We were inspired by the sheer talent showcased, so we decided to get to know some of the artists better.
We’ll be bringing you a selection of our favourite illustrators, sharing stories from their background to what inspires them, and how they have stayed creative in trying times.
Introducing Amber Vittoria, a New York based illustrator and Professional Overall Winner.
Tell us about yourself, your background, what inspired you to become an illustrator?
I’m originally from Patterson, New York, a smaller town a few hours north of New York City. Like many artists, I was drawn to communicating visually at a young age, as I always felt that it was the most accurate way for me to express how I was feeling at any given time.
I went to Boston University’s College of Fine Arts, where I studied fine art and design, with a degree in Graphic Design. Upon graduating, I realized I loved to illustrate far more than design, and as I worked full time as a designer, I worked evenings and weekends on my illustration practice until I was able to become an illustrator full time.
Tell us a little bit about your experience throughout this competition. What inspired you to enter? How did you create your winning piece?
I tend to choose one award competition to enter each year, I’ve always loved how the WIA has so many levels of awards and recognition for various projects and illustration styles. Upon completing my residency at Facebook, I felt the body of work I made there was a good fit for WIA this year. With that said, I was so excited to find out I won overall!
What is your favourite colour and why?
This is tough… it changes hourly! I love how colours speak to each other to convey a mood, and I aim to leverage those colour conversations in my work to create visual narratives.
What is your favourite medium to work with and why?
Currently, it’s ink and paint, having the time at home to pause, slow down, and create by hand is wonderful. All my recent work is inspired by the WIA award winning project, and how women carry themselves throughout the world.
What would be your advice to artists and illustrators who are just starting out / learning?
Remember that everyone has a different path; there is no one correct way to be an illustrator. If you’re reading this and have any specific questions about your journey, style or how to charge for projects, feel free to contact me personally!
Do you have a typical routine you follow when you start a new piece; if so, what is it?
For client projects, yes, I love to sketch ideas first, so we can be as collaborative as possible throughout the process. However, with personal pieces, I try not to stick to a routine.
What inspires your work?
Women throughout the world are my biggest inspiration.
What is your favourite W&N product to work with and why?
The black Drawing Ink and a brush allows me to play with line as a narrative driver, which is such a joyful experience!
If you want to see more of Amber’s work check out her website here.