Q & A : Lianne Harrison : Illustrator : London

We like to share the love at our Bus Stop, and as we spend lots of time peeking around different blogs, websites and clever people’s pockets, we often find little treasures, and if we had to describe this treasure, but only talking ‘bakers delights’ it would definitely be a jam tart for us. Sweet in the middle, pleasing on the eye, and all about fun, friends and making the best of what you have.


If you have a spare 5 mins, take a look at the brilliant Lianne Harrison blog, which I just love, as it is a great view of the inspiration and research process that Lianne takes on her journey to her finished work. She shares museum trips, doodles, books she likes, and info on exhibitions around town. And then, before or after that treat, you can read a little more about this one clever lady as she very kindly answered a few questions for us.


Born: Malvern Hills

Lives : London 

Education :  First Class BA (Hons) Degree in Illustration, Swansea Metropolitan University & Distinction Foundation Diplomma in Art & Design & Distinction BTEC ND in Art & Design & AS Level Photography

Why & how did you choose your career in Art? Did you enjoy it at school, and who inspired you to be an artist when you were younger?

I’ve always been creative, I can remember spending hours drawing and writing stories as a child, my parents were very encouraging, they always wanted me to pursue a career I would be happy within. I loved Art lessons in school and spent many lunchtimes in the art rooms. When I was younger I was really inspired by Salvador Dali and Bridget Riley, and I have always been a big fan of Quentin Blake. As a child I once wrote a letter to the Queen asking to apply for a job as the Queen’s Artist. 

Fly girls

What were your favourite books as a kid ?

I loved anything by Roald Dahl including ‘Boy’, ‘The Giraffe, The Pelly and Me’, and ‘Charlie and The Chocolate Factory’. I was also a big fan of Spot The Dog, Mr Men and The Animals Of Farthing Wood.

Who are your top 3 artists, and why ?

Beautrice Alamagna is a wonderful children’s book illustrator, her book ‘Un Lion A Paris’ is beautiful. Laura Carlin is an illustrator who creates imagery with a real sense of place and atmosphere. John Stezaker is also a very interesting artist who works with photographs. The way he uses found imagery is simple but very powerful.

What is your favourite place for a weekend day out/ long lunch, or for a treat?

Escaping the city and finding somewhere peaceful. Can’t beat a good beach day. 

Beach scene

What are the 3 most important items in your handbag that you cant leave home without?

My sketchbook, my Papermate Flair black fineliner pen and my iPhone for google maps, emailing and photographing inspiration on the go.

Where would you love to spend an afternoon (with your girlfriends), and why?

Anywhere with tea, good vibes and comfy sofas. Perfect ingredients for a good catch-up.

Which art books, websites, or magazines do you love, and recommend to our budding creative youngsters?

For collage lovers I would recommend a book called ‘Cutting Edges: Contemporary Collage’, I can always turn to this for inspiration. For the business side of things, there’s lots of tips and advice for freelancers on http://www.creativeboom.co.uk. Also, ‘Varoom’ and ‘Wrap’ magazines are a staple in my reading diet.

Bore da

What do you use for inspiration with your work ?

Living in London has its perks with so many great galleries and museums right on my doorstep, if I’m ever feeling uninspired, taking a few hours to absorb some culture always does me some good.

What creative tools, can you not live without ?

My collection of papers, precision scissors and pritt sticks.

Can you leave us one creative secret to share please ?

My secret is that although all my collage is handmade, I often create each element separately and scan into Photoshop in layers. This allows me to change the composition and scale easily, which is really useful when working for clients, as this makes it a lot simpler to make changes.

What success, exhibition or just plain fantasy would you like to have achieved in 5 years time ?

I’d love to continue progressing in my career as a freelance illustrator and write, illustrate and publish my own children’s books. I would also love to start a publishing company with my partner as we are both love beautifully crafted artist books.

These Lianne’s contact details:

website: www.lianneharrison.com & blog: www.lianneharrison.wordpress.com & email: lianneharrison@myself.com