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Christine Karron is a celebrated artist and children's book illustrator based in Alberta, Canada. Working as a freelance artist for 20 years, her artwork has been sold worldwide and includes several self-published colouring books. Christine loves to create fantasy illustrations and characters with a whimsical, narrative and humorous touch primarily using coloured pencils, ink pens/markers and watercolour on paper.
How long have you been illustrating and what made you start?
I have been drawing and painting all my life. Already as a small child my interest was always in drawing. Many in my family are artistically talented so it was something very normal for me. When reading children’s books I liked to study the skilfully done illustrations and tried to learn from them. I was lucky, my parents supported me right from the start - somehow it was already clear in kindergarten that I was going to be an artist. Professionally I started with illustration in Germany many years ago when I created a funny character and signed my first contract with a leading publishing company.
Where do you get your inspiration?
I am a dreamer with a big imagination - my best ideas come to me early in the morning while waking up. Of course everyday happenings, everything and everyone around me influences my work as well. Music is usually a huge part of shifting me into the right mood to create. Sometimes I like to escape the busy city life by going into the nature, the big outdoors – that’s something very rewarding and a place to find peace and purity.
Where is your favourite place to illustrate?
I have my cozy little studio in my home, that’s usually where I like to escape the reality and create whatever comes to my mind.
What are your illustrating/colouring material essentials?
I have worked pretty much with every traditional media, but my absolute favourite is graphite pencil, and also I love to work with watercolour, coloured pencils, ink markers, ink pens, and sometimes acrylic.
What’s the piece of work that you’re most proud of or enjoyed doing the most?
I enjoy every piece I do, starting with an idea in my mind, then the process of getting it to the paper from the first pencil stroke to taking shape, up to adding colour and bringing it to life in the end. I do put all my soul and imagination into each piece, so I am proud mostly of all my work. However, I think it’s not so much about the proudness I am feeling about my artwork, it is more the emotional value and the stories they are made of that makes them special to me.
Don’t be afraid to have fun. I often read that some colourists are afraid to ruin a page because they think they are not good enough or because they are not sure if the colour scheme they want to do works out. Just put these thoughts away and enjoy it – when it’s finished I am pretty sure you will like it and if not, then you did some practise and probably learned from it. You will do better next time!