Natasha Aldred

Say hello to illustrator Natasha Aldred.

‘One thing a lot of people don’t know about me is that when I was 14, I used to work on a local farm,’ says Natasha. ‘I fed the calves and herded the cows in!’

When she gets a spare hour or two, she likes to pop down to local life-drawing classes: ‘You don’t take your artwork too seriously, and it’s a perfect way to socialise as well as relax.’

Tell us a bit about yourself…

After graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in Illustration at the University College of Falmouth, I returned back up north to my home in West Yorkshire. Since returning I have had chance to work with a couple of small businesses, designing logos and illustrating events. I work part time at a local record store, surrounded by artwork and music fuels my ideas and inspiration and has given me a chance to meet new people and to get involved creating artwork for a small independent record label.

Creating my illustrations, I like to use messy lines with biro, dip pen and ink. I use collage to create texture and colour to the artworks and mix them with a clean white background. I like to think conceptually and you can often find some deeper meaning within the pieces i produce. I tend to draw faces and women. I find that the human figure, especially portraits can provide so much character and project personality within the person involved.

What are your inspirations?

I take inspiration from everything, each day i will be obsessed with something new. My main inspiration is photography, which in my spare time, you can find me out with my camera, photographing friends in crazy conceptual themes or working with my fashion designer friend, Sammie Rounding, capturing her gorgeous designs. I spend alot of my time looking through tattoo magazines, checking out the alternative lifestyles and fashions. I listen to a large variety of music, attend gigs and watch obscure films. I feel that these all influence how i work and the themes which come out.

What’s your favourite piece of work you have produced?

My favourite piece I’ve worked on is my Depression series. It allowed me to push the boundaries and look at a theme/subject that people are unable to see. Depression happens to a lot of people, and is usually quite hidden. This has given me the chance to show how the condition can start off hidden and can build up until it explodes, to provide this information to others and create awareness of the situation. This artwork helped me overcome my hurdle of style, and my illustration has come together into something I can call my own.

Who is your favourite ‘creative’ in your chosen field?

I love the work of Sandrine Pagnoux – her illustration style is a beautiful blend of photography and illustration with a sense of sinister and surrealism. Other Illustrators such as David Mack, Dave Mckean, Graham Rawle also follow this theme but inspire me with their use of texture and collage. I follow alot of photographers too such as Perou – with his crazy themes and Tim Walker.

I follow alot of upcoming creatives, all with new intriguing styles, especially artists which class themselves as lowbrow and allow their personality to feature in their work. I’ve always been a big fan of Juxtapox, with inspiring artists such as Alex Pardee, Tara Mcpherson and Greg Craola Simkins.

Visit Natasha’s website and blog; Tweet her, too: @Natasha_Aldred.

All images © Natasha Aldred. To view the images in clearer detail, click on them.

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