What materials do you use for your work?

For most of my digital illustrations, I use Procreate on the iPad! For traditional media, I love working with markers, and acrylics. For purely graphic design projects, I use the usual Adobe Creative Cloud programs (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator).

Do you recommend studying Graphic Design?

Yes! All in all, choosing a school is a very personal decision. I joined an associates program, and really enjoyed my time there. A lot of people get their bachelors degree as well, but in my experience, that isn't always necessary to find a job or achieve a successful graphic design career. I'm proof of that!

If you can manage to build a quality portfolio, that alone will take you far. That's what makes graphic design a bit different than other careers! Having excellent craft is the most important part of being a designer.

What advice can you give me if I'm a new Illustrator or Designer?

1. Practice, practice, practice. Keep drawing and designing. Concentrate on growing as much as you can. Look at what others do (your peers, instructors, professionals) and see how you can apply it to yourself in a way that's true to you.

2. Build your own defining style, or a set of styles. Don't copy others verbatim, but certainly gain inspiration from the world around you. Sometimes it helps to think of a theme - do you like horror, animals, or landscapes? Try to hone in on what kind of things you like and build a body of work based on that.

3. Consistently aim to improve! Keep in the loop with new technologies and continuously educate yourself. Things change fast in this digital world, so it's important to stay up to date on the latest trends and software. This can also mean refreshing your work and portfolio from time to time to not let things get stale.

4. Be visible! Post on social media, purchase an artist booth, or join an art gallery. Anything you can do to get your work out there is going to not only feel good, but help you keep that confidence and improve.

Do you take commissions?

I do - whether it's an illustrated piece, book cover, or some other design, I'm your girl. Just send me a message at ashleynicoledraws@gmail.com, or through the contact form on this site.

Be sure to check out my Commissions Info page for details. I look forward to hearing from you!