#HoxtonHotspots: Q&A - Jane Smith Illustration

Hoxton Press
5 months ago

We’ve commissioned the extremely talented illustrator, Jane Smith to sketch our development Hoxton Press at various milestones throughout the build process. Now that construction has finished, and Jane has completed her illustrations, we caught up with her to find out more about her career, top-tips for the local area and what she likes most about the duo of towers!

At what age did you start illustrating? And when did it turn from a hobby to a profession?

I started the year after I left college, so around 23/ 24. I did a BA in graphic design in Newcastle and there was an illustration module within that, but I properly started the following year. After leaving college I moved to London in 1985 and spent 6 months working for the Radio Times mainly as a junior designer with some illustration commissions alongside and it was then that I realised I wanted to work purely in illustration.

What is your favourite area of London to draw?

For me, it has to be Dalston, Hackney, Shoreditch and Islington. From an emotional angle, these areas are my home, so I have some really strong connections to these places. I’ve also lived up in West Hampstead, and I’m quite fond of North London.

What’s been your favourite project to work on?

It’s very difficult to say, each project has its own unique charm. But I most enjoy illustrating buildings, street scenes, cityscapes and maps.

Favourite architectural style to draw?

I suppose if I had to pick a handful, I’d chose art-deco, some modern buildings, modernism, brutalism and Victorian, although it really does depend on what mood I’m in.

If people want to come and see your illustrations, when and where are you next exhibiting?

I have some pieces semi-permanently on display in a restaurant in Stoke Newington, called Stokey Veg Vegan. I’ve also recently joined the East End Trades Guild, so I hope to become increasingly involved with them over the coming year. I may be at Old Spitalfields Market once a month – although nothing is set in stone yet!

What did you most enjoy about sketching Hoxton Press?

I love the rhythm of the buildings, the repetitive lines and how the pattern changes as you look up. The further you look up, the relationship between the lines changes and the angles become steeper – it’s quite therapeutic.

On a more simplistic level, I like that the buildings are different colours, it provides a fantastic contrast. The fact that they aren’t rectangular is also extremely refreshing!

Do you have any top-tips for places to visit in the Hoxton area?

There is a fantastic Turkish restaurant down the road in Dalston called Mangal II and the artists, Gilbert and George, eat there regularly, it’s that good!

I also enjoy going to the Vietnamese restaurants in Shoreditch and along Mare Street. There are so many fantastic reasonably priced, cheerful and characterful restaurants around Shoreditch and Hoxton serving up really fantastic food.

What are your ambitions for 2019?

I don’t really have any! I’m in the fortunate position that things just roll in and they are great projects that I want to say yes to! So, I’m happy to just let it roll! I will be running some sketching workshops in the South of France for a week in September, which I cannot wait for!

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If you’re interested in finding out more about Jane, you can visit www.janeillustration.co.uk/blog and lots of her London prints can be bought from her online shop www.etsy.com/uk/shop/JaneillustrationArt

A selection of one, two and bedroom homes are available to move in to now at Hoxton Press with Help to Buy offered on a selection of apartments: 020 3308 9813 / hoxtonpress@anthology.london