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Which sounds super exciting, except that I go back every 2-3 years! Travelling is pretty much my favourite way to get ideas for new projects. I think if I spend too long in the studio my work gets stale, plus when I travel and meet other super awesome illustrators and it scares me into working lots again. A good example of this was on my recent visit to New York I met the lovely Caitlin Anne who draws and paints incredibly bizarre but very richly detailed characters. I also briefly met Goni Montes and Sam Wolfe Connelly at the SOI show who have exceptionally lush work. So coming back I had lots of ideas for personal projects I wanted to do (the first being the Ungaretti illustrations).

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This is the second. I’d done some observational sketches of landscapes, and I really wanted to take them to final and just get it out of my system. I love having the chance to focus on my rendering, but I was also excited to get on with some more focused commercial work later on. So with that in mind, I wanted to spend a bit of time developing my colour palette. I love the scenary in Hong Kong because it’s so dramatic and different to the UK; a sea of skyscrapers set among mountains. So I decided to do a 3 part series showing the relationship between the buildings and the mountains as the viewers eye draws out. Close into the city the buildings are dominating, but as we get further away you see that they’re just part of a much larger landscape.

cat-o'neil-hong-kong-1cat-o'neil-hong-kong-2cat-o'neil-hong-kong-3I’m at the beginning stages of contacting a few arts and educational institutions in Hong Kong in the hopes of organising a residency for the end of the year, so fingers crossed!

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