Meet Shane McGowan: Illustrator from Melbourne, Australia

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In the spirit of giving back, and our desire to support local businesses and artists, we are doing an artist spotlight series. We will be showcasing a new artist each day for the next 31 days. Today’s artist is Shane McGowan, an illustrator from Melbourne, Australia.

Spooky story

Spooky story Spread for upcoming picture book to be published in Sep 2014 Honourable Mention in 3×3 International Picture Book Show No.11

Shane has been drawing ever since he can remember. When he was a kid he loved to draw cars, robots and planes, and he still does. At school he created his own comic strips and now he makes picture books, magazine illustrations and cartoons for people all around the world. He lived in London for a very long time and traveled to lots of far-off interesting places, but now he resides back in his home-town of Melbourne with his partner. He loves to run, play tennis, sing in a ‘groovy’ Pop choir and eat Gluten Free cake.

Question: How did you get into design?
Shanes’s Answer: After I completed a design course I dragged my folio round to studios and agencies, couldn’t get a job but I started to get book covers and editorial freelance illustration commissions. It just went from there.

Question: Where are you from, where did you go to school?
Shanes’s Answer: I was born and raised in the deepest darkest Melbourne burbs here in Australia. I was educated in state schools across Melbourne, we moved around a bit.

Question: What are your tools of the trade?
Shanes’s Answer: Pencil, paper, Photoshop.

I'm Freezing

I’m Freezing! Double Page spread from I’m Freezing! by Shane McG Koala Books 2007

Question: What websites do you go to for design inspiration?
Shanes’s Answer: Illustration Mundo, Tumblr, 3×3, American Illustration, Drawn was a good one but it’s gone now, YouTube, Pinterest

Question: What is your favorite movie, band, and artist?
Shanes’s Answer: Village of the Damned starring George Sanders 1960, Also the opening scene in Jaws is a personal favorite.

Depeche Mode
Fiona Rae

Question: If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
Shanes’s Answer: NYC circa 1965

Question: When you’re not designing, what do you like to do?
Shanes’s Answer: Read, run, watch episodes of American 60’s sitcoms on YouTube, eat Gluten Free cake, sing in a male pop choir, watch historic car racing, galleries, theatre, cinema, music, go for very long walks along the river, hang out with friends.

Evie's Mad Hair Day

Evie’s Mad Hair Day Double page spread from Evie’s Mad Hair Day Templar 2005

Question: If you could meet anyone (dead or alive) who would it be and why?
Shanes’s Answer: I’d like to be a fly on the wall at Warhol’s factory in the 60’s, just to soak up the madness.

Question: What advice would you give to someone just starting out in design?
Shanes’s Answer: Have a passion for whatever you do and be very patient. and persistent. Collaborate with people who know more than you do. Do something that you love or don’t bother.

See more of Shane’s amazing children’s book illustrations and design at his website

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