Who is Jane Foster ?
"I illustrate, screen print, sew and write books. I love bold, happy designs that appeal to children and adults alike. My purpose in life is to bring joy into other people's lives by creating happy illustrations for children's books, wall art, mugs and other products. I spend much of my time illustrating books and working on licensing designs but I also have a small range of products that I create for my web shop - these are often from very small editions or 'one off' items that I sell to loyal customers around the world. I design and make every item in my shop."
Source : https://www.janefoster.co.uk/about
1) You are an author, an illustrator, a print maker, a musician and your sewing machine is your best friend. Is there any field in art that you don't know and would like to try ?
I think it could be fun creating patterned geometric blankets and jumpers on a knitting machine but I also know they’re not easy to use !
2) How do you get yourself organised with your work and your online shop ? What's your favorite part of it ?
I have a good routine - I start my morning with admin and emails and try to find time to create / sew and illustrate in the afternoons. It’s not always easy as I might instead be packing orders from the night before and customers always come first! If needed, I work late at night to get everything finished. It’s always a juggling act.
3) For how long have you been working as an independent artist ? What was the turning point in your life that made you want to become a freelance illustrator ?
I left a career as a full time music teacher in 2008 and began my new career, trying to make money from being a self employed creative. I fell onto illustration by accident as I was asked if I wanted to illustrate a baby book. Prior to this, I was screen printing fabric to make into toys, bags, cushions and prints. After I had illustrated my first three baby books, I was lucky to get offered more. The reason I left my career as a music teacher was I’d just adopted my baby daughter and didn’t want to leave her with anyone else. I wanted to create a new career from home so Imcould always be with her until she was old enough to go to school. I still work from home (but in my garden !).
4) Who are your absolute favorite illustrators/artists in general ?
I love Dick Bruna who created the character Miffy. I also love Stig Lindberg who worked a lot with ceramics.
Handmade Dick Bruna Miffy cushions by Jane Foster
5) Is there any illustrators your discovered via Instagram that you love ?
Yes, far too many !! I particularly love Sanna Annuka.
6) Do you have any advice for young artists who want to make a living out of their art ?
Be brave and share your work online often. Don’t wait until it’s perfect, just get it out there - the feedback you’ll get is valuable. Instagram is so important these days - I started with a very small web shop and Etsy - these days, it’s hard to be found unless you have an Instagram account that can direct people to your website. Keep creating lots and lots and avoid comparing yourself to others - instead, find your true voice and keep going ! There isn’t a quick route but many people quit - if you’re not a quitter, you’ll get there in the end !
7) Do you have any future projects you'd like to share with us ?
I’m going to start licensing my designs to more companies who can add my illustrations to products. I’m also going to be working on some new children’s books.