Illustrator’s Portfolio 154: Ashley King

Age: 23

Nationality: British

Living in: West Midlands

Image 1

Book cover design competition, Influence An Anthology.


What is in your sketchbook?

Someone once told me that ‘Your sketchbook is your life long partner’. Well, I guess one you can’t divorce. My current sketchbook holds lashings of biro on parcel paper, watercolour creations, photos, pencil shavings, notes and line drawings. It’s a great tool to channel thoughts from everyday life into and to see ideas grow…I guess like your life long partner after all.


Image 2

Spot illustration for Cell Magazine, Halloween edition, George A. Romero article.


Where do you illustrate?

Many places but I’ve made a mini studio space in my home where I can escape to draw. I tend to spread my work across every table I can find but if I’m not there, then I’m more than likely filling my face with carrot cake. You can find me drawing in cafes, on the train to work and generally where there’s a busy atmosphere to keep my creative mindset ticking.


Image 4

Self directed book illustrations, The Old Toby Jug.

What inspires your work?

My Grandma who had always encouraged me to draw lends a big hand to what now is my passion for illustration. I take plenty of inspiration from unfamiliar places, traveling and pondering about life. As I aim to be a published book illustrator, I love collecting children’s books and admiring practitioners in paper cutting such as Rob Ryan and Su Blackwell. Illustrators such as Shaun Tan and Maurice Sendak who have an amazing catalogue of beautiful work inspire me too. One of my favourite past times is diving into antique shops and having a rummage through old books, post cards and vintage craft. I also enjoy reading about culture, folklore, film and collect different surface patterns and textures to draw on. As a person, I am very open-minded so everyday is a new day for inspiration.


Self directed book illustrations, The Old Toby Jug.

Self directed book illustrations, The Old Toby Jug.


What music do you listen to?

My music taste goes from one end of the spectrum to the other, like a yo-yo dieter but without the calories. I love a bit of Fleetwood Mac, Boat to Row, Lucy Rose, Seth Lakeman, old school Madonna, She & Him, Slow Club and not forgetting utter cheese that everyone hates but secretly loves.


Image 5

Self directed book illustrations, The Old Toby Jug.


What did you have for breakfast?

Banana and strawberry crunch, glass of orange juice and an apple. I do like my food. You should try blending natural yoghurt mixed with honey, mashed banana and blueberries as a smoothie for breakfast– Delish!


To see more of Ashley’s work click here, or follow her on Twitter @Ashley_J_King_