top of page

Illustrating work environments

Updated: Dec 12, 2019

I was busy working a lot during the weeks of this project so I decided to make the most of my time by creating some reportage illustrations at my work. I work in the British Museum in the Great Court Restaurant which is a fast-paced environment that's always busy due to exhibitions and tourists etc. It’s the type of place that works efficiently in the sense of being able to accommodate as many customers as possible in a short time frame. As you can imagine, this can get very hectic. My aim was being able to document the daily hustle and bustle surrounding a profession and their relevant practices. I liked the idea of capturing life and its complexities formed on the practice of customer service, as this is a job that many can relate to.

From practicing reportage drawing I’ve found that it’s important to make mistakes and learn from them. It’s also vital to focus on experimentation rather than aiming to beautify my drawings by amending or erasing work, as this can in fact add to the aesthetics of the illustrations. I had to set myself a crucial reminder that I’m drawing on location to be able to capture information as primary research rather than develop a finalised intricate drawing. The idea was to focus on a certain person/subject to creating a narrative around their daily duties at our workplace, developing a story that has been told through our human interaction. Having been in the unique position of already having developed a clarity of understanding the subjects and their duties by being their colleague and having spent uncountable hours with them in the same place, this has helped me capture their processes even more. As a reportage illustrator you have the opportunity of editing away unrelated detail, which in turn allows the audience to pivot their attention on the core of the activity. As an artist on location you are able to absorb new processes and procedures, which then influences our own practices.

bottom of page