Don’t miss the takeover weekend we’ve got planned with OKIDO magazine on Saturday 30th November and Sunday 1st December at their HQ in London’s Kings Mall Shopping Centre in Hammersmith!
Over the course of the weekend we’ll be selling books at exclusive discount prices at our pop-up shop, and be running some amazing FREE drop in workshops, led by four of our incredible illustrators.
All workshops are run on a drop-in basis throughout the two hour session, so come by anytime! Check out the full details here…
Saturday 30th November
10am – 12pm : Abstract Animals with Owen Davey Owen will how you how to use shapes to draw whatever you can imagine! This fun, drop-in workshop will help you to draw animals both big and small with the creator of the acclaimed Mad About Monkeys and Fanatical About Frogs. Suitable for ages 6+
2pm to 4pm : Alien Activity with Ben Newman Could there be life on another planet? Join award winning illustrator Ben Newman and Professor Astro Cat for a gravity-defying drawing workshop. Get creative with some space-factoids and design your very own alien. Suitable for ages 5+
Sunday 1st December
10am – 12pm : Sleepy Mobiles with Eleanor Hardiman From the illustrator of the viral sensation The Sleepy Pebble, Eleanor Hardiman, this relaxing workshop will show you how to create a gorgeous hanging mobile from collaged and found elements. Suitable for ages 6+
2pm – 4pm : Paper Penguin Pals with Ella Bailey Join the creator of the best-selling One Day on our Blue Planet series in creating your own penguin pal with collaged materials, just in time for the cold weather to blow in! All materials provided. Suitable for ages 5+
You’ll be able to find us at the OKIDO shop space inside the Kings Mall Shopping Centre in Hammersmith in London, where our own pop-up shop will be running from 9.30am to 6pm on Saturday and 10am to 5.30pm on Sunday.
We’ll also have free activity worksheets and a colouring in station running all day for the whole weekend, so whether you’re looking for some wonderful workshops to keep you busy during these cold winter days, or just want to get a head start on your Christmas shopping. pop by anytime for some Flying Eye fun!
We sat down with award winning illustrator David Doran, who we recently had the delight of working with on Orchestra, a beautiful large format book which is the perfect introduction for budding musicians and those with a passion for the orchestra.
From atmospheric film soundtracks to exhilarating live performances, the dazzling sound of the orchestra is unmistakable. Within Orchestra you can meet the performers who bring the music to life, the instruments that take centre stage and discover the beauty behind each and every note.
We picked David’s brains on everything from his own passion for music to how he puts together his elegant and inspiring illustrations. Read on below for more!
Whilst your drawings for the book are
very clean and digital, they also feel very vibrant and full of life. Do you
immediately draw onto a tablet or iPad, or do your illustrations start life in
My process has gradually become more digital
over the years, through working on projects and finding the most efficient ways
to work. Though, I always do my best to maintain the handmade quality…I love
seeing slightly wobbly lines and the artists hand in work!
Is this illustrative process the same
when working on editorial work as well as on books?
Editorial timings can involve such
quick turnarounds, sometimes a week, sometimes a matter of hours. I enjoy the
challenge of thinking fast, working up concepts and speeding towards a quick
With this book, I spent nearly 3.5yrs
with the idea, working with the team at Flying Eye, gradually developing the
concept and working hard to make the book the best book it can be.
Orchestra has a beautiful colour
palette full of complimentary peaches and blues, how did you come to settle on
the colour choices for the book?
l wanted the colours in this book to be striking, warm, engaging and joyful. I have very specific memories of certain books I had as a child, vivid colours and lines; I loved Orlando the Marmalade Cat the drawings were beautiful. I can picture my favourite spreads, and how the colours always stood out. With the more traditional printing process of these books being so clear to see, often using 3 or 4 main colours that overlap to create the full palette, I wanted to reference this directly in Orchestra, by using only 4 grounding colours in the palette myself. The difficult part was to find 4 colours that gave the book enough variety from each page to page.
The subjects of your illustrations
seem to always be lovely and varied, from landscapes to people, full colour
spreads to spot illustrations. You utilise this whole wide range of skills in
Orchestra – did you have a favourite part of the book to illustrate?
I think that the variation from page
to page is what makes a book so special to have. There’s a lovely transition as
you turn the page and the opportunity to show the variety and surprise the
reader with each turn is something that I wanted to make the most of.
My favourite part of the book was
illustrating all the different characters on each page and including small
details for readers to gradually find (birds stealing breadcrumbs, mice hiding
on stairwells…). As a child, I loved pouring over the details and I’m hoping children
can have the same experience of finding something new on each page with
And was there a most challenging
There’s a lot of detail and intricate
information in the book that needs to be shown correctly. The most challenging
part was creating and designing the layouts of each page that show the
information both accurately and also engagingly.
Some of the illustrations of
instruments are quite technical, how was this to work on?
Yes, there’s so much detail to
capture on the instruments, and it’s very important to get it right when
creating something educational. I had a lot of input from the team at Flying Eye
who checked all the details with a professional.
What’s your own relationship with
I love music! We have music playing
in the studio almost all day (with a few podcast exceptions). I’ll often listen
to Orchestral music when I’m reading briefs or emailing, as I find it great to
concentrate too and often get a little distracted from reading when there is
And finally, do you have any advice
for any new illustrators who are interested in book illustration?
Enjoy what you’re making and find
ways to make it personal to you!