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Glen Mullaly illustrates his way into the hearts of no-goodnicks everywhere from the penthouse studio of his palatial home, "Sturdley Manor", located in sunny Victoria B.C., Canada. His magazine, advertising and publishing clients all occasionally wonder:

1. Who is this man, this mystery, this force of nature?
2. What's with all the peanut butter and jelly stains on his roughs?
3. Why does he refuse to seriously answer interview questions?
4. Who's stronger, Superman or The Hulk?

When did you first decide to become an illustrator? Was there a pivotal moment?

Hmmm...I've drawn since I could hold a crayon, but it wasn't until I ruled out the exciting career opportunities of fireman, scientist and astronaut at the ripe old age of six or seven that I knew doodlin' was for me. From then until the age of seventeen I thought that drawing for my first love of comic books was going to be my path to glory. The fact that I preferred single panel stuff and not the sequential panel method that comics require should have been a clue that this 'twas not in the cards.

Who or what inspires you?

Boy oh boy... I grab my inspiration from all over. My strongest influences come from kid's book, magazine and advertising illustrators working from the late 1940's to the 1960's. Like a lot of kids in the 1970's I grew up on ( or was permanently twisted by... ) Mad Magazine - both the 70's newstand issues and the reprints of the potrzebie 50's and 60's material. Richie Rich comics and reprints of 1950's Dennis the Menace in digest form also held my boyhood interest, so Dennis's Al Wiseman and Mad's Bob Clarke would rank number one and two for me. Children's book illustrator Elizabeth Brozowska would bat third in this personal All-Star Illustrator line-up.

Where does your training come from? Self-taught? College/Art School?

Well, you could say that the wonderful work of the fine folks mentioned above helped show me the ropes, but otherwise I'm pretty much self-taught. I started at a local art college directly after graduating high school, but I soon realized that this particular school's curriculum was not for me. I was anxious for practical instruction on the ins and outs of the commercial art industry, not art theory and museum field trips. So I left before the end of the first semester. I've paid for that with my lack of some basic art fundamentals though.... so do what Pliny the Elder said ( or was that Woodsy the Owl? ) and stay in school kids!

How do you keep "fresh" within your industry?

I add BHT to my packaging.

What are some of your current projects?

Besides being currently interviewed by some wacky online interview site I'm keeping busy with a pile of magazine and advertising work. I've got some kid's book work on the warming plate as well. My money, fame, wisdom and impressive finger muscles don't come from sitting around on my duff all day, Clyde!

Which of your projects are you the most proud of? And why?

My favourite projects are often my most recent. The new illos I did for my recent website revamp are probably my current favourite. Negotiating the final fee with myself was an exhausting ordeal, but I think I'm worth every penny.

Are there any areas, techniques, mediums, projects in your field that you have yet to try?

Absolutely. You name it! Although it's been almost 25 years since my first paid freelancing job ( a B&W illo for a local newspaper ad at the age of 14 ) I feel like I'm really just started exploring all the possibilities. On the top of my list for new media is finally figuring out gouache. Many of my favourite kid's book and magazine illustrators often produced some of their best work in gouache, so getting a handle on that would be satisfying. Plus learning to spell "gouache" would be great too!

Any advice to the novice designer/ illustrator?

Yes - it turns out that erasers are NOT edible! Trust me, I found this out the hard way. Even though some even have the word "gum" in their name, don't put them in your mouth..... I'm telling you.... really.

What makes a designed piece or illustration successful?

If both I AND the client are happy with a job then I consider it successful. Often it's only one or the other.

What do you do to keep yourself motivated and avoid burn-out?

Get out of the studio...that's it. Smell the flowers, squint while basking under the radiant warmth of that strange, shiny object suspended in the sky, talk to real people without using a keyboard. Anything.

Finish this sentence. "If I weren't a designer/illustrator I would have been a..."

Sure... I could come up with boring answers like "used bookstore owner" or "audio engineer", but since we're blueskying here I'll spill my guts and reveal that it's.... "commercial citrus fruit dyer". Seriously! Somebody's got to whip those pallid pummelos, colourless kumquats and ugly uglis into shape!

And finally, what is the best thing on prime-time TV right now?

I'm hip on that swell Hootenanny show! Last Saturday's big telecast had those crazy New Christy Minstrel kids on it. I just can't get enough of that newfangled "folk music" the youngsters are listening to these days!


Choper Nawers! said...

really nice work glen, love it specially the space kid...really cool....Congrats!

Glen Mullaly said...

Thanks CW!

Anonymous said...

I absolutely love this artwork. I too am a child of the 70s and have always been in love/fascinated with illustrations, the colorfulness of it all. I am happy to have run into these...the artist seems a little arrogant, though, unfortunately.

modmom said...

you're brilliant mr.mullaly!

Glen Mullaly said...

Thanks fellow Flickrer Modmom, glad you stopped by!

Thanks too, anonymous.

Sorry you didn't appreciate the tongue-in-cheek nature of my answers ( hence the statement at the top of the page "... Why does he refuse to seriously answer interview questions?").

I thought I'd try to inject a little humour into the proceedings.

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