Jon Hanlan

The vibrant Jon Hanlan creates uplifting and optimistic illustrations inspired by retro cartoons, the Mediterranean & the wild. He made time to chat to us about how listening to yourself is the first step in developing your style, looking out for eco-friendly projects, and shares a few artists to look out for.

Give us the elevator pitch on what you do.

I’m a creative person who is primarily focused on illustration. I make work that is vibrant, whimsical and optimistic. I hope it uplifts and/or inspires.

What are your three must-read design books, blogs or podcasts and why?

Three off the top of my head are definitely Illustration Hour Podcast, Ball Pit Mag and Anorak Magazine.

Design work by Jon Hanlan The Design Kids interviews Jon Hanlan work-2

Who are your top five design crushes globally right now?

I can name a few: Bill Rebholz, Alexandre Nart, Jennifer Xiao, Aley Hanson and Dan Woodger. There’s so many talented people, it’s a tough question these days!

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

The best piece of advice I’ve ever received was from a mentor years back that simply told me, “Make work that is you. Who are you? Find out. Enjoy.”

Design work by Jon Hanlan The Design Kids interviews Jon Hanlan work-4
Design work by Jon Hanlan The Design Kids interviews Jon Hanlan work-4

Who are you? Find out. Enjoy.

How did you develop your style as an illustrator and what tips would you have for others?

For myself I developed my style naturally as time went on. You need to focus and listen to the inner compass that shows you what you’d most like to create, then practice that. Experience can be a great tool to cultivate your style. And developing yourself as a human being helps as well.

What’s on the cards professionally and personally in the next 12 months?

I am working on a couple of exciting projects with eco-friendly companies, as well as finishing a children’s book to do with helping the environment. I’m also always posting personal projects on Instagram, as well as travel photography and poetry.

Design work by Jon Hanlan The Design Kids interviews Jon Hanlan work-6
Design work by Jon Hanlan The Design Kids interviews Jon Hanlan work-6

Where to find Jon Hanlan online.

Website: jonhanlan.me

Instagram: @jonhanlan

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