Jay Holland is a sign painter and artist/illustrator type person currently living in London, originally from Bournemouth where he studied illustration at what was then called The Arts Institute Bournemouth. Jay now works mostly from his studio in Deptford (big up ArtHub), or up a ladder rested against a shop front or wall of some sort. He lives in a flat with his girlfriend and two weird cats.

Tell us a fun fact about you I've seen Bowie in concert. Though I was quite small and I don't remember a lot of the show

How did you get into illustration? I studied it at what was then The Arts Institute Bournemouth, its since changed names and that shows how long ago it was I graduated!

Who or what inspires you the most? lots of people and things inspire me, mostly my surroundings, friends, fam, music and movies, old sign writers. Steven Powers.

What does a typical day look like for you? That depends on what I'm doing, I could be in the studio, or on site. It mostly consists of painting letters. And it always starts with a cup of tea and a shower.

What do you do when you have a creative block? Look through old sign and lettering books, watch an old art or skateboard related video. Sit and think. Get the brushes out and see what happens.

Top three clients you've worked with? They've all been top, apart from the ones that have not been top.

What tools (digital or not!) do you use to create your work? Mostly pencil and paper leading on to brush and paint. Sometimes a computer is involved and I'll use Illustrator when it is.

What's your favourite resource for inspiration? Old sign books. The internet.

Do you have any tips for artists thinking of doing freelance? I think its good to have some sort of financial back up in place before you make the jump to self employed, whether that be savings or a part time job for a day or two a week. It'll help a lot at the start as it means you don't have to worry too much about cash flow, and you can focus on getting your work out there and finding new clients. Also try to keep in mind that nothing happens instantly - all your heroes are in their 40's.

What would your dream project be? Having free reign to paint all the signs for a flower or grocery shop - I'm good to go with designs, I just need to find the owner.

How can fans keep up-to-date with your work? Instagram


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