how was your university experience? did you feel ready for the real world upon graduating?
you currently live in Argentina, how did that come about?
have you done some extensive South America traveling?
why illustrate as an alter ego, why not just Nate Williams portfolio 1, portfolio 2?
Art directors usually don’t want to play style roulette. Of course, this doesn’t mean you can’t do other styles, it just means when you present them to art directors you have to have consistency between the body of work. A number of illustrators, writers, and musicians work under various names for this particular reason. Here is a really good book to read regarding this subject:
The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding
by Al Ries and Laura Ries
do you prefer one style over the other?
what gave you the idea for illustrationmundo?
- Just Illustration - A place where ILLUSTRATION gets all the Love
- Showcase all the great Illustrators in the world today and make it easier for Designers, Art directors and others to find them
- Provide current information about the commercial illustration industry
- Provide a central location where people can get inspired, share information and seek advice
- Free!! - Participation is absolutely free- The only barrier to entry is that content submitted is relevant to illustration and of great quality
there are so many users doing so much updating, is it almost a full time job keeping the website (illustrationmundo) going?
In order to manage all these submissions I created and programmed a custom approval and email auto responder system ... but at the end of the day there is still a human factor of approving content. Obviously editor's favorites and featured news are subjective, but I really tried to create a system that takes my opinion out of the equation. I created algorithms to float content to the top based on user behavior and give users a variety of ways to organize/search for content that makes sense to them. For example I think the favorites feature is pretty useful - if you like say Noah Woods there is a good chance you will like the illustrators he likes. Then you can sort those illustrator based on a variety of parameters.. newest, most clicks, most favorites, comments, etc.
you worked as an AD for a while, how much has that experience helped you appreciate the "other side" of the industry?
can you talk a bit about Art with Heart, specifically about your work with them?
how could other illustrators get involved with that organization?
would you mind also talking about your work with "The Truth Anti-Tobacco campaign" as well?
is it ever crazy being Nate Williams? like, what i mean is that you're such a huge figurehead in the illustration community, is it weird to have a level of success that borders on fame...in the illustration community?
My top priorities are to feel good, make other people feel good, be an awesome dad, and enjoy life.
how long did it take for illustration to become your full time job? did your career have a "big break" - if so what was it?
It probably took about 2 years .. I think my first big break was doing a job for Converse http://www.n8w.com/
your work is so playful, but you still provide work thats conceptually serious - how do you go about creating that balance as well as solving problems / coming up with ideas?
I think of “creativity” as a mixture of curiosity and appreciation for what’s around you. It’s a way to view the world. A creative person looks at something and wants to know how it works. Why it is the way it is? What is its history? Are there other things like it? We search for patterns to predict the future, etc. We don’t always have the answer when we want to know ... so we start to think of possible explanations ... in the process we not only answer our initial question but we think of possibilities that can be applied to other things.
The best ideas are drawn from your experiences. It's important to keep your subconscious well fed with information, history, nature, music, friends, family, conversations, emotions, physical activity, good food. One day all the info will enter the conscious mind in the form of a unique idea.
what are some major influences in your work?
From a visual standpoint I would say my influences come from typography, silkscreen art, low tech printing, children's drawings, folk art, Latin American and Asian cultures. After working for a number of years in high tech 3D rendered video game industry, I visually craved the opposite. I wanted to create things that were simplified to their essence, more organic, handmade, textured and incorporated the human touch .. such as accidents, mistakes and discoveries.
I really like doing hand drawn lettering because it combines something that is mechanical and adds a human touch. I like that mixture of mechanical and organic.
thoughts on working traditionally vs. working digitally?
how important is getting out of the house and doing non illustration related activity - sports, movies etc.
where do you see it going in the future?
anything in general you'd like to see get more hype
Word of mouth is the strongest form of marketing and services like Twitter, linkedin, and social networks are really starting to facilitate word of mouth ... so much so ... that sites like twitter are becoming a real threat to traditional search engines such as google, because instead of indexing web sites its indexing real conversations … it’s indexing word of mouth.
All this being said, every person you work with can have a positive or negative impression of working with you. This impression is passed on like a snowball and can help or hinder you. Value your relationships.
All images copyright Nate Williams
Thanks Nate, you rule!!!