Artists for Crello is a project where we collaborate with artists whose work we admire and deeply respect. Our first talent is Jack Royle – a graphic designer and illustrator from the UK. Jack’s work is minimalistic, vibrant, and (according to our own opinion) genius. Soon you’ll be able to find a special collection of Jack’s designs within the Crello Editor, but for now – enjoy this short interview.
Introduce yourself. Who is Jack Royle?
I’m a graphic designer/ illustrator from Manchester, UK, now living in Sheffield, UK. I never got ‘official’ graphic design training, so when I finished university I trained myself up and immersed myself in the process. I’ve always been that kid at school who drew in the back of his books so I guess you could say this career path was made for me from an early age.
How would you describe your illustration style?
My illustration style is heavily influenced by Pop Art. In art class, I would always style my work off the likes of Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. My topics are always based on a single item mostly, I feel like there is beauty in making final pieces that are simple, yet eye-catching at the same time.
How do you decide what you’re going to design next?
It varies, it mostly comes from my day-to-day life. I might have had a day where I ate some Oreo biscuits, so I make a note to illustrate that. Sometimes it can be things that are popular at that time in the news or on social media. Everything around me can influence what I am going to make next.
Where do you go when you need inspiration?
I’ve come to learn that inspiration can come from anywhere. If my daily life doesn’t influence anything, I’ll get outside for a walk, or go and meet some friends. It varies all the time, but it nearly always comes from daily life or just random thoughts from my childhood.
Name the top three artists you think are absolutely genius.
There are so many, but if I have to pick 3 they would have to be; Fugstrator for one, his work is amazing and I love how he documents his process and workflow. Another would have to be an artist called CJ Hendry, if you just looked at her work you wouldn’t be alone in thinking they were photos, but follow her on social and you will learn it’s all colour pencil drawings. Her work is crazy, blows me away all the time. And last but not least, it has to be Made By James. Not an illustrator, but for sure an amazing logo designer. Being a graphic designer I love the way he thinks about things and his logo show such depth and personality.
Looking at your IG account, I can tell you’re very good at storytelling. How does this help you in the process of illustrations?
I think that comes down to logo projects I have done in the past. It’s all about trying to tell a story with logos and I feel that has stemmed off into my illustrations. I love drawing anything that takes me back to a time in my childhood or a fond memory. If I can encapsulate that into 1 object and piece then I have done my job.
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Do you have a favorite work of yours? If so, which one and why?
I always feel I like my most recent work is my favourite as that is the truest representation of my work. But if I had to pick one, it would be my classic car series I did last year. Every car had its own personality and I picked cars from my favorite films and video games as a kid. Films like James Bond and games like Vice City.
What software and hardware do you normally use?
Always the Adobe Creative Suite. All of my illustrations are made in Adobe Illustrator and then I bounce between the other programmes depending on the task I need to do.
What would you recommend to young talents who’re just starting?
Be you, draw from your past, create what you want to create. There are so many artists out there, and as overused as this saying is, there is only 1 you. The more personal you can make your work, the more attractive and unique it becomes.
You teach on Skillshare, on your YouTube, and via educational posts on your IG account. What motivates you to share your knowledge with others?
I just always think back to when I first started out and what I wanted to learn. I try to capture that in my teaching content. I also have a pretty hectic schedule with work, freelance, and general life stuff so my tutorials are my way of connecting more with my audience.
Creative people can be a bit too protective of their works. Does it happen to you sometimes?
I used to, I always used to think what I created was the right direction and no changes were needed. But over time you come to realise if you are working with clients, it is their vision, not yours. It’s our job as designers to guide them in the right direction, but also not being stubborn to their ideas. The only time I get protective over my work now is if someone is stealing/ripping it off as their own, which in this day and age, sadly always happens.
What’s your attitude towards feedback? Do you seek feedback? How do you deal with feedback that’s negative? Share some advice on how to make use of feedback to grow as an artist.
Always, you can easily get so focused on your work that you can think straight, and getting an outside opinion is always good. Negative feedback is always part of the process, the best thing to do is to really dissect the negative feedback and take away key points. If the negative feedback has come from client work, then take the feedback and speak about it with the client, find out why they have that opinion, and chat it out. You will find it’s not as negative as you think and most of the time it was just because you didn’t explain it well enough.
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What advice would you give yourself 5 years ago knowing what you know today?
Just not to worry about stuff and don’t compare yourself to friends who are doing better things than you at that moment in time. Your time will come, you just have to commit and put the work in. Create what you want to create and if it doesn’t work, just move on to the next thing.