Interview with Dominique Byron

Dominique Byron is an illustration student living in Manchester and with a liking for science fiction – which can be seen when taking a look at her portfolio.

Please read what she had to tell us about her art and inspiration after the click!

Why and when did you start making art?
I’ve always enjoyed drawing since I was young and did observational drawing at school. I carried on with art through highschool but never really considered it as a career, until college when I decided to move on to an art foundation despite my intentions to do something science based! Then I chose to do my degree in illustration, which I am still currently doing.
As for why: making art just gives you the freedom to be creative and indulge your curiosity and interests. You can create whatever you want!

What kind of art do you make?
Im currently doing my illustration degree, so I’ve been working on illustrations for various projects such as editorials, newsletters and album covers. I’ve recently been creating work with a mix of digital and handmade processes, but I’m always on the lookout for new ways of working. I’m interested in animation and typography so would like to try incorporating those aspects into my work in the future.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I draw inspiration from a lot of different places. I’m a bit of a film geek so I’m constantly inspired by films or TV I see, whether it be the subject matter (I love science fiction!), the music, or the cinematography. I think there is probably a lot of crossover between 2D art and film, both in terms of creating a narrative sequence and also the framing of a shot, the colour, composition, perspective, etc. So I don’t see them as mutually exclusive, and try to let things I like or learn from film inspire my illustration work. Even if only I notice it! I’m also really inspired by the work of others, whether it be professionals or other students on my course, and by people or things that I see in my everyday environment. There’s always a character on the bus worthy of a picture!

What does your usual workday look like?
When I’m at uni, my usual day would be to get in for around 9, and if we’re given a new brief I’d probably spend the morning having a think and scribbling down some ideas, maybe doing a bit of research for reference. I’m not really a morning person so I often do the bulk of my work in the evening when I can concentrate the best. Taking a few breaks throughout the day is also essential for keeping a fresh perspective.

How do you spend a perfect sunday?
Probably having a bit of a lie in, then I’d maybe watch some tv and if it’s sunny go out for lunch somewhere. Then there’s always time for a good film in the evening. That sounds quite boring doesn’t it? Maybe if it was my dream sunday I’d spend the day doing some sort of extreme sport like skydiving, I’ve always wanted to do that!

What is your favourite taste of chocolate?
I’ll happily eat any type of chocolate, except those chocolate coins you get at christmas for some reason. I’m currently quite partial to the odd chocolate covered raisin, they have to be one of your five a day right?

Show me your favourite artwork (from your own collection or another artist)
It’s too hard to pick just one! I recently discovered the work of Christian Montenegro and absolutely loved it, so I’d say definitely check out his website. There’s nothing on there which isn’t great!

Whom should we interview next?
My sister Jennifer Byron is a photographer and has done some really great work mostly in fashion photography, and I’ve recently spent some time with Jack Maguire and Tom Mathieson who have some great moving image work on the go.

If you could have coffee with a famous artist – dead or alive – whom would you choose?
That’s a hard one….maybe Saul Bass. I really love his poster work and would be able to simultaneously quiz him about his film titles and collaborations with Hitchcock. I also love Edward Hopper’s paintings, so it would be nice to have a chat with him about his work.

What is your philosophy of life?
Hmmm…I’ve never really thought about it, maybe just work hard, keep an open mind and treat everybody as you’d want to be treated. I try and keep to those as much as possible.