Jill Calder

About Jill Calder

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So far Jill Calder has created 31 blog entries.

East Neuk Open Studios in June

By |June 3rd, 2013|Uncategorized|

"Jungle Bus" by Jill Calder © 2013
It's that Open Studios time of year again! Yes, I'll be flinging open my doors in Cellardyke on June 8-9th and June 15-16th as part of East Neuk Open Studios, so please do come and visit me!
Download a brochure and check out the artist locator Google map on the ENOS website

New on show this year will be a selection of prints from my Children's Sleep and Ventilation Unit "Amazing Dream" project at the Royal Brompton Hospital in London - signed and numbered, of course!  "Jungle Bus" is part of this series and was inspired by a little boy in the Unit who had Cystic Fibrosis and dreamed of going on a night adventure with his toy monkey, Freddie.
20% of the sale price will be donated to the wonderful Royal Brompton & Harefield Hospital Charity 
Nurse Station in the Children's Sleep & Ventilation Unit with some of my artwork installed.
This charity, which helped fund the workshops and large scale artwork I created for the Children's Sleep and Ventilation Unit,  tirelessly raises money to support the outstanding work that takes place at the Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals by buying equipment, funding vital research and improving the lives of patients – all in areas where the NHS simply could not supply the extra funding needed. 

Other prints and cards will be on show in my working studio, so head on over to Fife - it will be lovely to see you!



Sunday Times Magazine – Art on Sunday

By |April 16th, 2013|Uncategorized|

The Sunday Times Magazine has a had a wee bit of a make-over recently and they have a new feature called Art On Sunday. It's a pretty tiny spot but it does *ping* out of a page of Witter interviews and other written features. I was asked by them to ill...

Have a Cosy Christmas!

By |December 18th, 2012|Uncategorized|

Hello lovely people! Here's hoping you have all (unlike me) done your shopping, wrapped your presents, hummed a carol, stashed your mince pies and cracked open the sherry already. No? Well, you still have a few frenzied days yet!I am currently rushed o...

Queen Kook: Portrait of a Bohemian Blue-Blood

By |October 6th, 2012|Uncategorized|

Kook is the latest portrait in my on-going series of glamorous  illustrations which I rather bizarrely entitle "The Hair Girls". This series, which also includes Frisco and USAville, is inspired by my increasing appreciation of portraiture, as well as fabulous fashion photographs in Vogue, Harpers Bazaar etc. I adore a good fashion moment, me... and this series lets me play and experiment with fashion illustration. 
So, with Kook I really wanted to draw something different, using a more muted palette and rich handmade textures as well as try out a new style of lettering... cue research trip!
In particular, I got lots of ideas from my many visits to the wonderful National Portrait Gallery in London - specifically the Elizabethan and Tudor rooms - and also the National Galleries of Scotland in Edinburgh too. I have become fascinated by portraits from the 16th-19th Century of royalty and nobility as they are so embellished, bling-bling and loaded with symbolism yet still so formal and rigid in the way the sitter is posed.
© The National Gallery
 Quite often the painter of these portraits was an "unknown artist", often Flemish or Dutch. However, Hans Holbein is the artist most associated with painting the Tudor nobility - King Henry VIII, in particular. Holbein's portrait of A Lady with a Squirrel and a Starling, painted around 1526 is one of my favourites from this period. It has a simplicity and freshness to it that makes it stand out from other portraits of the time. Apparently it may have been one half of a marriage portrait - what did her husband look like? What did he wear? What animal was he posing with? I'd like to see that portrait too.
When I was wee, I was fascinated with the story of Mary, Queen of Scots, especially as she had her head cut off ! Here she is depicted (with her head) on her tomb in Westminster Abbey in all her pious and mournful beauty.
tomb of Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots at Westminster Abbey

 Last but not least, the whimsical work of Guiseppe Archimboldo is an inspiration for Kook too - this particular picture, Spring, painted in 1563 being a favourite. Isn't it lovely? He literally has rosy cheeks!



If you fancy a bit of blue-blooded nobility adorning your walls, Kook is available as a signed and numbered print!

2012 East Neuk Open Studios

By |June 12th, 2012|Uncategorized|

East Neuk Open Studios - June 16-17 and 23-24. 10.30am to 6.30pmI have done tonnes of new work especially for ENOS this year! The above print, "Lion Food" is a new member of my popular "Not Cute" animal series.  It is a 50x70cm digital print on 31...

Gary MacKean’s Beasties

By |August 14th, 2011|Uncategorized|

I just wanted to promote a great exhibition by illustrator Gary MacKean, currently a MFA student at Edinburgh College of Art, which opens tomorrow!Gary's work is dark and quirky and well worth going to see, especially as the show is tied in to two of h...

V&A Illustration Awards 2011

By |May 20th, 2011|Uncategorized|


I am very chuffed indeed to have my work shortlisted for the 2011 V&A Illustration Awards
This is for my book cover illustration and lettering on "Bob Servant: Hero of Dundee" by Neil Forsyth, a fellow Broughty Ferry-ian!

So, It's get the glad rags packed and off to London with my two big sisters for the Awards ceremony at the wonderful V&A Museum on June 6th - wish me luck!

I am also delighted to see the work of Michael Kirkham is shortlisted too. He is an excellent illustrator and an ex student at Edinburgh College of Art, who I had the pleasure of teaching. Good luck Michael and to all the other illustrators!

Here's the press release:

"The V&A has today announced a shortlist of 18 candidates for its annual Illustration
Awards. The Awards are given to the best book and editorial illustration published in
the UK each year.
This year the V&A received nearly 1000 submissions by illustrators working in the UK.
The shortlist was chosen by a panel, including contemporary artist, Rob Ryan. The
panel chose their favourite entries from three categories: Book Illustration; Book Cover
and Jacket Illustration; and Editorial publications. There is also a separate category for
students’ work.
Rob Ryan said: “The great thing about this competition is that it shows how wideranging
and strong illustration is in this country and also reminds us that young people
leaving college are smart, funny and thoughtful.”

This year’s shortlist, announced today, comprises four categories:
Book Illustration
A. Richard Allen for Brat Farrar (Folio Society)
Hannah Rollings for My Travel Journal (Blurb)
Oliver Jeffers for The Heart and the Bottle (HarperCollins Children’s Books)
Grahame Baker-Smith for FarTHER (Templar Publishing)
Laura Carlin for The Iron Man (faber and faber / Walker Books)

Book Cover and Jacket Illustration
Jill Calder for Bob Servant Hero of Dundee (Birlinn Ltd)
Lorenzo Petrantoni for Boxer Beetle (Sceptre)
Pascale Hutton for A Russian Novel (Serpent’s Tail)
Sarah Young for Ariel (faber and faber)

Editorial
Bruce Emmett for Nightmare on Cameron Street (New Statesman)
Michael Kirkham for ‘You’re like Scrooge’ (The Independent)
Andy Potts for Escape to the City (New Scientist)
Paul Blow for Bleeding Eyes (3 x 3)
Oliver Kugler for Un Thé en Iran (XXI – Vingt et Un)

Student Awards
Mike Redmond for Awkward people in funny situations (Royal College of Art)
Hannah Simpson for Bacteria (Kingston University)
Soo Choi, Obsessed Monsters (Kingston University)
Rob Bloomfield, The Nose (University for the Creative Arts)
Jack Kirtley, The World is your Playground (Swansea Metropolitan University)

A display of original artwork and published work by shortlisted artists in all categories
will be shown at the V&A from 7 June until 17 December 2011.
The V&A Illustration Awards were established in 1972 and previous winners include
Quentin Blake, Ralph Steadman and Michael Foreman.

V&A Illustration Awards 2011

By |May 20th, 2011|Uncategorized|

I am very chuffed indeed to have my work shortlisted for the 2011 V&A Illustration AwardsThis is for my book cover illustration and lettering on "Bob Servant: Hero of Dundee" by Neil Forsyth, a fellow Broughty Ferry-ian!So, It's get the glad rags p...

Being interviewed by Vasilisa Baruskova…

By |May 3rd, 2011|Uncategorized|

Vasilisa Barsukova, a Graphic Design student at Lamar Dodd School of Art at  University of Georgia in the USA interviews me for her Illustration class!It was a great interview and I thought I might share it here.  See some of Vasilisa's desig...

Being interviewed by Vasilisa Baruskova…

By |May 3rd, 2011|Uncategorized|

Vasilisa Barsukova, a Graphic Design student at Lamar Dodd School of Art at  University of Georgia in the USA interviews me for her Illustration class!It was a great interview and I thought I might share it here.  See some of Vasilisa's desig...