To round out our “Heads Above the Rest” campaign, we’re excited to highlight the portrait illustrations of four incredible Directory of Illustration artists: Owen Davey, Sara Tyson, Erik Drohman and Dave Cutler.
Keep reading to learn more about these artists and their impressive portrait illustrations!
Owen Davey, represented by Folio Art, works in both traditional and digital media. Used by a range of advertising, editorial and publishing clients, Owen’s colorful, fun illustrations are perfect for engaging with audiences in a friendly and informative manner.
This illustration is one of several characters Owen created for the cover of a magazine, which featured an article about beauty and grooming products specifically designed for “people of color.” We asked Owen:
DOI: What keeps you inspired?
OD: The world around me in general, whether that be nature and people I see on the streets, or the work of other illustrators and TV and film.
Sara has worked for over 35 years as illustrator and graphic designer, her stunning work being produced for clients including American Lawyer Media, Global Brief Magazine, Hampton-Brown Company, Harcourt Publishers, Harvard Business Review and many more. Shape, texture, contrast and color all play important parts in her stylized, conceptual figures.
Sara’s illustration below, entitled “Tone at the Top,” was created for Strategic Finance Magazine by the Institute of Management Accountants. It describes how when senior management’s ethical tone is deficient, the company fares poorly, often resulting in fraud and abuse.
DOI: What is one piece of advice you wish you would have received early in your career?
ST: Learn to know what areas of running a business you are good at. One may have been better off to hire someone to do accounting or marketing or hiring a rep so that your time is better spent focusing on the creative. It can be difficult to try to do it all!
Erik Drohman produces art and graphic designs for a range of purposes, including greeting cards, packaging, surface decoration, product designs, ceramics, glassware, marketing materials, web content and more. His acrylic work is created in a watered-down style to resemble watercolor, which beautifully complements his often nature-inspired subjects.
Erik’s portrait illustration is of religious philosopher and theologian Albert Schweitzer. Erik told us that he wanted to capture the character in Schweitzer’s face, such as his hair and exaggerated mustache.
DOI: What is your favorite type of project to work on?
ED: That’s hard to pick a favorite. I think I prefer projects that allow me to distill a scene or story into one composition that captures all the necessary elements to tell the story, such as an opera poster, projects along those lines. It’s about trying to gather only the most necessary images for inclusion in a composition so that the story, or direction that the story will go, becomes obvious, even if it’s perceived on a visceral level and not immediately understood.
A member of the Society of Illustrators, Dave Cutler creates impressive conceptual illustrations that have been commissioned by publications, corporations and organizations throughout the world. His work has also been featured in SBS Digital Design and American Artist. Among his many notable clients are Time Magazine, Businessweek, Forbes, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal,, Microsoft, Ogilvy & Mather, UPS and Disney.
Here’s another look at the 20 incredible artists in our “Heads Above the Rest” campaign—we hope you’ve enjoyed learning about these artists and their fantastic portrait illustrations as much as we have!
Big thank you again to the incredibly talented creative director, designer and DI artist behind our “Heads Above the Rest” campaign, Dave Plunkert.
Don’t forget to check out the May/June 2019 Communication Arts Illustration Annual to see our full, back cover ad, and explore Directory of Illustration artist portfolios for additional work.