Natural Niche - Children's Illustrator Natalie Smillie

Hear how Natalie went from the RAF to flying solo as a freelance illustrator. Along the way she's found her niche, an agent and a dog... but it feels like almost not enough hours.

Here’s some of the key takeaway points:

  • Natalie found her niche of Children's iullstration naturally, it was just what she found herself alway drawn (pardon the pun) to

  • As an illustrator, getting an agent has meant a contsant stream of work (they do the marketing for you) and consistent money (they chase it for you)

  • The weekly Twitter challenge #colour_collective was a great side project for her: the public nature of it gave her accountability, the social nature created new friends and conversations, the weekly nature meant she consistently added to her portfolio in a way she wouldn't have otherwise

  • Natalie found working from home pretty isolating, often not leaving the house - so she got a dog, now she has to go out (and dog walkers are very sociable)

  • Twitter plays a big part in keeping Natalie sane, it really is social

  • Follow people on Twitter whose work you like/aspire to, you often see behind the scenes glimpses too

More from Natalie Smillie

Natalie's site

Natalie on Twitter

Useful Links

Twitter Colour Collective Challenge

Penny Neville-Lee

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