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One of the loveliest parts of my job, is finding and sourcing new illustrators to represent. I draw inspiration from many different places, books, magazines, blogs, instagram (of course), links from the websites of artists that I admire, degree shows, exhibitions and so on. It is so easy to access artists these days, but it's finding those truly special people, that are right for you, and vice versa that can be tricky. But, all the more joyous, when you do.

So, for my new regular post on They Made This I decided to go on an illustration inspired expedition. Over the coming months, I will share with you some of the amazing artists I have discovered and admired during my 6 years as an art buyer at DDB London, and most recently as Head of Illustration at Blink Art.

So, here you have it, Helen Parker's Around the World in 80 Illustrators.

Diary Entry One:
I begin my fictional expedition in Antarctica - why ever not! I have always loved the work of William Grill, but when he produced the fantastic book, Shackleton's Journey published by the mighty Flying Eye Books, I realised the multitude of his talents. It's a beautiful book, in a lovely big square format so you can pour over the illustrations, all lovingly drawn in coloured pencil. The detail he achieves in the small things, alongside the magnitude, beauty and hardship of the epic journey are portrayed so magnificently well.

William deservedly won the mighty Kate Greenaway Medal for illustration this year and is the youngest person to ever win - A fantastic feat in itself! A friend of mine's nephew loves this book so much that he now travels to school every morning with tennis rackets strapped to his shoes. If that isn't the greatest example of how a beautifully illustrated book can influence young and old minds alike, I don't know what is. Well done, William Grill, or should I say William Brill! Right, I'm off to Elephant Island, see you next time.

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