Emma Block is a London-based illustrator whose work can be found in children’s books, packaging, magazines, greetings cards and books for adults. She has worked for clients including Stylist Magazine, Random House Canada, Bloomsbury, Harper Collins, UNIQLO, Orla Kiely, Anthropologie, Mollie Makes and Time Out. She teaches brush lettering workshops at our West Hampstead shop.
Q. We are really looking forward to welcoming you for your upcoming brush lettering workshops. For those who do not know, what is brush lettering?
A: Brush lettering is the art of creating beautiful lettering using a brush and ink. It’s a bit like calligraphy but more organic and expressive. I find practising brush lettering to be really relaxing and mediative, and of course the results are beautiful.
Q. How did you first discover your arty talents?
A: I’ve always been creative and knew that I wanted a career in the arts. After doing my GCSEs I studied a national diploma in art and design instead of A-levels and then studied illustration at University. After graduating I started working as a freelance illustrator full time.
Q. What was the first image you ever painted?
A: I’m not sure. When I was at nursery school used to paint horses that were just rectangles with legs!
Q. On your website it says that you provide live illustrations at corporate event and parties. This sounds like lots of fun! What sort of things do you do for this?
A: Live illustration is really fun but really intense. I paint portraits of people live as they stand in front of me using watercolours. Each portrait takes about eight minutes to complete, and live illustration is always very popular, so If I’m working at a party or event I’m always very busy. Doing live illustration teaches you to work very quickly and become very decisive and confident in your painting. It also helps develop your observational skills.
Q. What would your dream commission be?
A: I would love to do range of packaging for a company like Marks & Spencer’s or Fortnum & Mason’s. It would be so lovely to design biscuit tins and boxes of tea.