Ready, Set, Draw! Showcasing 5 Top-Tier Illustrators from Across the Globe

Illustration might just be the most important part of life as a designer. It is the truest channel of expression for visual communication; a beast of an illustrator can shine like a fine artist, even if they are limited to the needs of a client or are subject to brand guidelines. Hours of practice then become a priceless addition to any project which is absolutely unique, and ultimately, more valuable.

Reaching that point as a designer is a daunting task that needs encouragement. So, check out these five designers who have taken their illustrations to the next level. Maybe… just maybe, they will inspire you to take up that long-neglected No. 2 and get back to the drawing board!

1. JARED MURALT, Switzerland

Website: www.jaredillustrations.ch

The first in a trend of fantasy-oriented illustrators on this list. Jared Muralt could be considered the H.G. Wells of this collection. He has a penchant for story-telling; check out his books, The End of Bon Voyage and Hellship.

Look For: Fantasy art, strong lines, pointillism and lots (and lots) of Ocean Liner Steam Ships.

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2. ZIVABELLE, Jerusalem

Website: www.zivabelle.com

By far the illustrator with the most commercial graphic application on this list. Her work ranges from fashion to accessories, in addition to her own brand: SMOOF Supply Co.

Look For: Flat colors, patterns, cool use of negative space, geometric shapes.

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3. DREW MILLWARD, United Kingdom

Website: www.drewmillward.com

Imagine Adventure Time on LSD. That’s what we’re looking at with Drew Millard, who specializes in poster art. To pin down a “look” that would encapsulate his work isn’t easy to do. Sometimes psychedelic, sometimes deco, at times grotesque, but always awesomely colorful!

Look For: Varying line weight, neon and pastel, border designs, grunge, geometric shapes.

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4. GERHARD HUMAN, South Africa

Website: www.gerhardhuman.com

If you like bright, high-contrast imagery, then Garhard Human is a must-see illustrator. He’s another one of our fantasy artists and he tackles themes as disparate as samurai, skater culture, lumberjacks, and rounds it off with some good-ol’ anarchy. I particularly like his spectacular character design!

Look For: Texture… so much texture… lanky characters, wobbly lines, vibrating color combinations.

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5. GABRIEL PICOLO, Brazil

Website: picolo-kun.deviantart.com

Although he hasn’t established a primary website yet, @_picolo is a must-follow artist on Instagram. He produces at least one new piece everyday, based on self-imposed challenges like his 365 Days of Doodles Project. Almost all of his work is fan art from the 1990s (think Pokemon to Harry Potter), done in pen, which he colors digitally.

Look For:  Fan art all day long, character compilations, trademark style, consistent presentation.

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Author: Alex Jimenez

Alex Jimenez is a Graphic Design student at FIDM with a BA in Geography from UCLA. His favorite activities are drawing and reading, and his deepest desire is to get paid handsomely for doing both. Given the chance to be a world dictator, he would force everyone to draw daily. To that end, he spends his nights trying to take over the world. Most days he can be found enjoying long, frequent walks to refill his coffee mug. Check out his work and political ravings at www.theboombaux.org

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