ARTIST IN RESIDENCE
Who are you? Introduce yourself.
I’m Gina Finehart, I’m am illustrator and designer from Melbourne. I’ve been freelancing for about 4 years I also work at a screen printers called Screen Fiend.
Give us a run down of what you do and your background.
When I finished studying design I got a job at a lunch gear company. I was drawing a lot of unicorns/dinosaurs for kids lunch boxes that would be sold in supermarkets. At the same time I was making band posters, portraits, album covers and doing freelance illustration work for a few different clients.
It was good to get both corporate and freelance design experience, but my favourite sort of job was making gig posters so I quit my full time job and focussed on freelance. I love live music so creating an illustration that represented the gig or the the music was something I got a lot out of.
Why did you get into design? Any influences?
I think I just never really entertained the idea of having a career in anything other than art or design because nothing else is as interesting to me as drawing and making images.
When I was a kid I was obsessed with cartoons and animations like The Power Puff Girls, Wallace and Gromit, Ren and Stimpy and games like Monkey Island. I used to practice drawing my favourite characters until I could draw them the way they looked on the TV. I was just a little kid, but I really think that was a huge influence on my work now because my style is pretty cartoony and I use a lot of colour and detail. It’s generally pretty silly too.
Your favourite piece you've done?
Probably the cover illustration I made for Picket Palace's ‘The Footy Record’. It was one that got really intense drawing all the little pieces, but when I stood back and saw it finished I was super proud of what I’d made.
I don’t really follow AFL so when the band asked me to make it I felt a little out of my depth.. But it was a really rewarding challenge and there are a lot of references to the sport and the culture surrounding it in the final illustration. I based the composition loosely on Collins St., 5pm by John Brack because I wanted to it to have an unmistakably Melbourne feeling to it. It’s more than just a illustration of people going to the footy, it’s about the city to me.
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