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Jennifer Zimmermann was very blessed to have attended some of the world's best schools, including Art Center College of Design and the Art Institute of Southern California to hone her skills – she holds both a BFA and MA. Ever since receiving her first degree she has been creating art for a living.
How long have you been illustrating and what made you start?
I've wanted to be an artist since early in grade school, even announcing it to my class at around age 7. I’ve been doing some form of professional art since graduating from art school more than two decades ago. I worked as a visual arts teacher in public schools for over half that time as well! I’ve been illustrating colouring books and pages for five years now.
Where do you get your inspiration?
I’ve always been inspired by culture, trends and art history, but I also find inspiration in the people I meet. As an educator it’s super inspiring to me when I find that my teachings and techniques have helped others learn new skills or gain confidence when it comes to coloring or to creating art. This is why I wrote The Secrets of Colouring book series. I love helping others discover their hidden talents and inspiration begets inspiration!
Where is your favourite place to illustrate?
I do love sketching while relaxed! While on vacation – a perfect example is the page colored in blues and golds seen in this issue, “Dragonfly Diva”, probably the most frequently colored page from my book Bella Futura. The line art concept was created by doodling while hanging out with my family in Florida! Outside under an umbrella in the sunshine is my favourite, or propped up in my bed – but most of my actual illustrating takes place in my studio at my art table.
What are your illustrating/colouring material essentials?
I’ve used Prismacolor Premier pencils for most of my life, but in recent years I have turned to Caran D’Ache Luminance for colouring portraits. A good sharp HB pencil or a mechanical pencil for my illustrations is essential. Whether drawing or colouring, my “secret weapon" is my Mono Zero eraser.
What’s the piece of work that you’re most proud of or enjoyed doing the most?
There’s no one piece that is my favorite, but I am proud of the body of work I’ve created – and the fact that there’s so much variety within it. I always mix it up a bit to prevent boredom, for both myself and my fans!
Never throw anything you create away. File it with a date… even if it’s terrible! Do a comparison six months or a year (or two!) later and see how much you’ve grown!