Wednesday

Glamour Magazine












Here's some new work created for Glamour Magazine (out now May 14 edition). It was such a lovely commission to illustrate an article about agony aunts, drawing directly onto the envelopes (including fake postal marks) which were then photographed for the magazine. They sent me lots of envelopes and gorgeous stamps ready to illustrate the piece:



I had a great time drawing these, and particularly enjoyed working on all the different typography! It's so great to see them in print and so unusual for me to create original artwork for an editorial brief - I was so nervous that they'd get lost in the post that I delivered them to Glamour by hand!

I'm having a long day in the studio to make up for skiving off yesterday in the sunshine. I went to see the new show at The Saatchi Gallery, The Glamour of Italian Fashion, and the Jameel Prize 3 at the V&A followed by The Winter's Tale by the Royal Ballet - a really inspiring day!

I'm currently juggling illustrating packaging for Cafedirect, with drawings for BBC Antiques Roadshow, BBC Countryfile, Eton Natural History Museum and the large installation for Hackney phew! Tomorrow I'm off to the Bookclub at The South Bank Centre (we're discussing Under The Net by Iris Murdock) and on Friday I managed to bag the very last (standing!) ticket to see poet Kate Tempest read her long form poem Brand New Ancients accompanied by a live score. I'll be up drawing early and late to bed to squeeze everything in this week before the chocolate festival on Sunday.

Have a lovely week (fingers crossed this glorious sunshine stays!) x

Friday

Cosmopolitan article


I've had a lovely week illustrating new packaging for Cafedirect, I'm really excited to show you it (and will do as soon as I can!)

I was interviewed for the current (May) issue of Cosmopolitan about my job, the article is above and the text follows below.

Have a great weekend - I'll be back next week with new work for Glamour Mag x

AS TOLD TO KATE RUSSELL. 
PHOTOGRAPH KATLE HYAM S‘ HAIR AND MAKEUP VICTORIA BARNES

Name KERRY LEMON
Age 32
From SURREY
Job ILLUSTRATOR

A TYPICAL DAY

I've always loved drawing, but it never crossed my mind that I could make a living from it. I studied fine art, then took on small jobs in the art world, from giving private lessons to working at a museum. Meeting sculptors, painters and ceramicists helped me realise it was possible to have a career making artwork, so I decided to return to uni and become an illustrator.

After graduating, I wrote a business plan, secured a £10,000 grant from the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust and worked hard to get my name known. I set myself a challenge to he established Within three years but, after 18 months, the work was steadily flowing in. Now I work on everything from illustrating books to designing and drawing huge window installations in places such as Harvey Nichols and Swarovski.

I got up at seven, have a shower, check my emails and take a big cup of tea into the studio in my home. I warm up by working in my sketchbook, then start on my projects. There are usually a few different things going on at once, but I have a board in my studio with dates on, so I know what’s due and W
when.

About 12,1 go for a walk and do Pilates because sitting at a desk is not good for you and I can’t risk a bad back. Although I’m alone at home, I never get lonely, as I’m immersed in my work. I’m back in the studio by 2pm and work until my partner, Steve, gets home at seven. He's an animator and I'll often FaceTime him to show him what I’m working on and bounce ideas off him.

In the evenings we sit with our cats, watching trashy TV, eating popcorn and sketching (I can’t stop!). I only put my books down if we’re watching a show such as The Killing, otherwise I end up bobbing my head up and down to see the TV!

l have to think like a business as well as be creative. I dedicate whole days to the admin side, such as invoicing and accounting, and l have at least one meeting with clients each week. This job means being organised and proactive - I don’t wait for the phone to ring. I think of things to draw and get in touch with people I think might pay for it. I’ve worked with Smythson, Boodles and Liberty that way.
Harvey Nichols asked me to do its Windows for London Fashion Week. I loved the brief to design dark, sinister British animals, which were blown up on vinyl and stuck to the glass. Seeing my work on those huge floor-to-ceiling windows was amazing.             

THE GOOD
The fact that I’m making money from my biggest passion. The bonus is I get to sit at home and do it with a cup of tea.

THE BAD
It’s potentially quite isolating as I’m working from home. I do make a big effort to see my friends though.

STILL INTERESTED?

QUALIFICATIONS 
You don‘t need specific qualifications but you need an amazing portfolio. Go to Association of Illustrators classes and talks, and read up on how to run a small business and market yourself - talent is only useful if someone knows you're there. 

SALARY 
Anything up to £70,000 a year.

KEY SKILLS
Be organised and willing to work hard. And be nice to people so they want to hire you!
and willing to work hard. 

END

I also created a short film for their digital content of me drawing in my sketchbook which you can see below:


Kerry Lemon - Cosmo Timelapse from Kerry Lemon on Vimeo.

BBC Antiques Roadshow Magazine




Here's a new drawing for BBC Antiques Roadshow Magazine, illustrating a feature about how to care for brass. I'll be working on these each month, I've finished the next one (on ceramics) and I'm well underway with the one after.

This week I've been working on some packaging for Cafedirect (really excited to show you this) and I'm designing a new tote bag for Squam USA (where I'll be teaching again in June). I went to see the ENB 'Lest we Forget' at The Barbican, of three specially commissioned pieces to commemorate the war. It was ASTONISHING, and I've been sketching the costumes, gestures and movement ever since!

Have a great weekend, I'll be back next week to share my feature in Cosmopolitan Magazine.

Illustrating 'Thrive' and magnesium





Here's some new drawings for Holland & Barrett, to illustrate 'Thrive' a counselling technique that people can learn independently - normally through a workbook, and magnesium found in potatoes, wheat, leafy greens and nuts.

This week I've been drawing lobsters for Holland & Barrett and sheep for Countryfile, I finished the doors and the lifts for the big new development in East London and popped into the University of Hertfordshire to meet their 2nd year illustration students. On Tuesday I went to the Foundling Museum to hear Lucy Cash (their first artist in residence) in conversation with writer Deborah Levy, and then Wednesday was treated to a trip to the cinema to see The Royal Ballet's Alice in Wonderland - the sets and costumes were so inspiring!

Have a great weekend - I'm off to my etching class again tomorrow!

Learning to etch and stitch...



As promised here's a peek at some of the work I've been creating in my etching class. I'm absolutely loving it, it's completely new to me as I haven't had the chance to try this form of print making before so I've got a lot to learn! So far we've covered drypoint, hard ground and soft ground and on Saturday we'll be tackling aquatint. The top image above shows a zinc plate covered in a hard ground. The black bits are the hard ground and the silvery bits are where I've scratched the ground away to reveal the metal underneath. It then goes into the chemicals where the design is bitten into the metal where the hard ground has been removed. The image below then demonstrates the print created from the plate, by rubbing the ink into the recessed metal areas and then running it through a large printing press.

Last Thursday I had a fantastic afternoon with Rachna Garodia at her shared studio at Archipelago Textiles 1.07 Oxo Tower on London's Southbank. I gave her a two hour drawing lesson in return for a two hour embroidery lesson. Apart from my complete inability to thread a needle, I had the most wonderful time learning about how to translate my drawings into stitches. It was really inspiring and Rachna had bags of energy, creativity and (thankfully!) patience! Below is one of her gorgeous designs (she's currently designing a website but can be contacted for commissions via email at rachnagarodia@hotmail.com).



Following on from last weeks site visit (complete with giant hard hat and high vis jacket!) I'm currently finishing up the 30 door designs and lift panels for the new development I'm working on in Hackney. It's vast, and I'm really looking forward to getting stared on the giant wall installation - it's the height of 4 double decker buses in top of each other! I've also started new commissions for Countryfile and Antiques Roadshow,  and a museum trail for the Eton Natural History Museum, and on Tuesday I visited the fantastic illustration students at the University of West London, to lecture about my career.

Have a great weekend, mine will be full of etching and sketchbooks! x

Wednesday

Holland & Barrett liquorice



Hello! here's a new drawing of a liquorice plant for Holland & Barrett, I always love these commissions as it's so interesting to find out what all these plants actually look like (my understanding of the visual properties of this plant before this drawing was of liquorice allsorts!)

Tomorrow I'm off to the building site in East London, I'm working on a G I A N T installation (30 doors, a lift and a wall sculpture of 18 x 6 meters) created from laser cut brass. This will be my first site visit and I'm really looking forward to getting a sense of the building - it's a retail and residential development of 30 flats and 5 commercial units. After that I'm off to the OXO tower on the Southbank for a skills exchange with a textile artist. I'll be teaching her drawing and she'll be teaching me hand embroidery HURRAH!

Have a fun week and next week I'll be back to share the results of my current etching course! x

Friday

QEST


Here's a little update on me for QEST Magazine, QEST is the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust which funds artists and craftspeople to develop their skills. The money is raised from Royal Warrant Holders (companies that feature a crest on their packaging indicating that their product is used in the royal household) and I was lucky to become a Queen Elizabeth Scholar in 2007 when I went to study illustration at ARU. QEST is the most A M A Z I N G organisation, offering life changing opportunities for creative people, I popped into their offices again yesterday to catch up with the team and they are unendingly kind and supportive of all the scholars. It's such an honour to be part of a network of very inspiring, creative scholars all over the country. 

Yesterday I was in London for lots of meetings, but I managed to squeeze in some exhibitions, I saw Silke Otto-Knapp's exhibition at Camden Arts Centre, beautiful black and silver watercolour and gouache paintings on canvas, and a wall of etchings. Rachel Howard's glossy, layered paintings at Blain Southern and the incredible Klee retrospective at Tate Modern (go go go! it finishes on Sat so be quick!) In the evening I went to 'Rhyme and Reason reflections on Climate Change' at the LSE organised by Cape Farewell and the Grantham Institute, there were talks, poetry recitals and a slam event. I really enjoyed Deanna Rodgers piece exploring the relationship between love and darkness through the question, “why aren’t London’s lights ever switched off", I think it premiered last night so I can't find it online, but she's performing it again tonight at the Albany so if you can make it GO!

Have a great weekend (I'll be at my etching class again on Saturday!) and I'll be back next week to share what I'm up to x