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Q&A with Lydia Nichols

Illustrator, designer, and anthropomorphizer

Hello! I'm Lydia Nichols—illustrator, designer, and anthropomorphizer.

What inspired you to become a designer?

Like most people who grow up to be artists of some variety, I spent a lot of time drawing as a kid and just never stopped. Shapes and lines are a language that just really makes sense to me which is why I love working with them.

What design software do you use?

Everything starts with pencil, but then I tend to finish pieces on the computer using my trusty tablet and both Photoshop and Illustrator, depending on the piece. I'll also create lines and textures with brayers, ink, charcoal, etc and scan those in too.

What is your ideal work environment?

Lots of sunshine and fresh air, a kitty here or there, a hot cup of tea, and an organized, but visually stimulating workspace full of books, drawing tools, and pieces of art.

Where does your design inspiration come from?

Everywhere! Books, magazines, newspapers, interesting looking people and animals, jazz music, well made furniture, textiles. If it's beautiful or has a story to tell, I'm interested.

Who is the person you admire most?

This question is just too hard! I admire a lot of people and list keeps growing. Lately, I've been super inspired by Tove Jansson and not just for her (amazing) Moomin work—her adult literature is absolutely marvelous. Her characters are so vivid and full of personality.

© Lydia Nichols