An interview with a children's illustrator from Dhaka

Tell us about yourself. What work do you do? 

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Hello, I am Rakibul Hasan. I am a Freelance Illustrator from  Bangladesh. I live with my wife Disha and two beautiful cats Umami and Yami. I am an Art Director at Grey Dhaka. 

As an art director I typically oversee the work of other designers and artists who produce images for advertisements both for television, and print media. I generate ideas, direct how the creative will work best and design concepts. 

 

Have you always been an artist? How did you start?

I can’t actually determine the exact age when I started drawing. I was always an art enthusiast and used to spend hours looking at different art works on books,  magazines or newspaper.  I started drawing little cartoons at school and I never stopped. During my years in the University, studying law, I thought why don’t I do something for a living that I love doing, and never get bored of,  thus my first step of “learning to draw” began.

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When you make illustrations for children, what is your process? 

I always start by thoroughly reading the script, learn about the characters, their behavior. I then plan a figure, according to their age and build, with the target audience in mind. The genre of the book is very important too, it determines the character and illustration style, the environmental factors, the basic features, etc. After going through this I start with the illustrations following the writer’s brief.

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What (or who) is your inspiration for your creative work?

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Naming one or two favorites or inspiration is very tough, I follow a lot of artists and they inspire me in various ways, someone knows how to express themselves well, someone plays with color beautifully, or someone may express happiness through their canvas in such an excellent manner, that leaves me breathless. My inspirations also come from nature, people around me,  and from my cats too.

Do you have any tips for young people who want to work in the creative field?

I will tell them to follow their heart, go though different art periods and famous artists, learn a bit about history, experiment with their ideas, style and techniques and practice to achieve their goal. Try to be honest and experiment well. 

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 Rakibul Hasan is the talented illustrator of the Guba board book series My World of Colors, My World of Opposites and My Beautiful World. His other work can be viewed here.