Thursday, March 25, 2010

Q&A with Illustrator Judy Kaufmann

I'm really enjoying these bold, yet somehow also serene, illustrations from Judy Kaufman. I had no idea how transfixed I'd be by her answer to my question about where she finds her inspiration—I bet you will be too, so pour some coffee or tea and relax with a little light reading. Who knows, by the end of this point, your imagination might be ready to take you on a little journey.

Name: Judy Kaufman
Location: Barcelona
Site: etsy,

How long have you been illustrating/drawing and why do you like the medium?
I've been drawing since childhood, and seriously illustrating from 2003. That was the year when I took the decision to get into this medium and also to move from the city where I was born (Santiago de Chile) and come to live to Barcelona, an amazing city for illustrators and designers. I definitely like the medium when there is originality into it. I hate to find same illustration style everywhere, so of course I like when I see a lot of different styles from different people on the same city and at the same time. Makes me think about how inspiration work ...

What inspires you?
As I always say, I get the inspiration from what I don't understand, what I don't know, what I don't know how to do, what I am not. From the interest that I feel about all things that are outside of my life. That's where my imagination picks the inspiration. On the other hand, I have a bizarre and explosive inspiration when I go to museums and galleries and I get involved with different colors and formats, whether I like or not what I'm seeing.

How do you usually work- do you have an idea in your head and you sketch it out in one fell swoop or are you more likely to come up with an idea and tweak it over time?
Once, I  read an interview done to Francis Bacon that really made me a lot of sense, he was always talking about the accident, the fact that you never can think a specific idea and take it to the end, there always going to be something (here the accident comes) that appears as a detail, but will change the perspective and the message of the artwork. Obviously between art and illustration there is a large gap and does not always work like that. But to answer your question, I never know finally what it's going to be...

Is this your full-time work?
This is not my full-time work, I work in the morning for a small design studio and I keep the afternoon for my freelance design and illustration work. I work at home with a lot of different materials and techniques, I feel lucky to have a really nice space where I feel free to create.
Where do you do most of your work?
Here is a picture of my desk (at home). The table was made by Marc, my boyfriend. It is an old door painted that has a sort of sunk to leave the pencils. I love it because is comfortable and It's perfect to separate the computer with the drawing area, That's the "serious" place where I work because I also can draw in the kitchen, the bathroom, the living room, the bus, in a conference or anywhere where I can get a pencil and a paper...


  1. What an eloquent and inspiring explanation of inspiration. I feel like "the accident" -- even in illustration -- is often what transforms a piece into something magical. Thank you both for this wonderful interview!