PK 147: Thinking of Becoming an Illustrator? How Artist, Kate Oleska, Switched Careers.

You just have to do what appeals to you and just do it! Because that’s how you’re gonna get a job that you want to be doing. You just have to grab every minute you have, every second, and just doodle, draw, do whatever you can and don’t get discouraged.

~ Kate Oleska

Are you thinking of becoming an illustrator…but feel stuck in an unfulfilling job?

In this interview, professional artist and illustrator, Kate Oleska, reveals how she made the transition over a number of years from her regular job as an architect to becoming a full time freelance artist.

So, if you’re wondering how to get your first client or find your own style as an artist and illustrator, you should find plenty of useful insights in this interview to help you make the switch and start doing what you really love for a living.

Becoming an Illustrator – Kate Oleska’s Story

Interview Chapters:

00:38-02:11

Introduction and Overview

Your host. Mitch Bowler, introduces today’s guest, Kate Oleska, a professional artist and illustrator based in the UK. In this chapter, you’ll hear about Kate’s previous career as an architect, and why she decided to gradually make the switch to becoming a full-time freelance artist over 14 years ago.

02:31-03:48

What did Kate do as an Architect?

You may not know it, but there are actually some strong links between being an architect and being an artist.

In this chapter, Kate explains why she chose this career path to begin with, and why she eventually decided to take the plunge and become a freelance illustrator instead.

04:26-06:13

What are the Similarities Between Being an Architect and Being an Artist?

Kate became an architect because she wanted a career where she could use her creative skills. But what are the similarities between being an architect and being an artist? In this chapter, she explains how she made the transition from one career to the other, and reveals the links between the two and the skills she picked up which made the journey much smoother for her.

07:33-08:55

How Did Kate Find Time to Develop her Skills as an Artist?

At first, Kate was juggling her day job as an architect with working on her art and developing her creative skills. But how did she find time to do this?

In this chapter, you’ll pick up some great tips for managing your time more effectively, and learn why it’s so much easier to put the hours in when you love what you’re doing.

09:16-10:14

What was Kate’s Main Focus as an Artist When she was Starting out?

From day one, Kate’s focus as an artist was on developing and improving her drawing and painting skills. In this chapter, you’ll hear how she did this…and how you can also develop your creative skills by constantly finding ways to improve.

10:22-13:48

Which Clients has Kate Worked for…and how did she Find Them?

Kate has worked for a wide range of clients so far, including illustrations for the much-loved Terry Pratchett book series, Discworld. But how did she find her first clients? In this chapter, you’ll learn why it’s so important to keep your social media channels updated…but also to reach out to people who might be willing to offer you work.

14:36-24:23

How did Kate Develop her own Style as an Artist and Illustrator?

It’s one thing to be influenced by another artist, but it’s quite another to develop your own unique style as an artist and stand out from the crowd.

So how did Kate find hers? In this chapter, you’ll hear why she believes individuality is so important….and why producing work in the style of already established artists will only get you so far.

25:06-27:04

Is There a Right or Wrong way to Develop Your art Style?

Everyone has a different approach as an artist. And, in this chapter, you’ll hear why Kate believes you have to follow your own path and not worry so much about whether you’re going about it the right way or not.

27:44-43:21

How to Make the Switch to Becoming a Freelance Illustrator

Going it alone can be scary, but Kate shares some super-useful advice to help you on your way in this chapter.

You’ll learn why it’s often a good idea to have a regular job which pays the bills (especially when you’re just starting out), and why all your hard work will eventually pay off if you stick at it.

43:46-44:57

What can you Learn in Kate’s Video Course for Pencil Kings?

Kate has recently produced a 3-part video course on portrait painting in oils for us here at Pencil Kings. And, in this chapter, she describes exactly what you’ll learn from watching her clear, step-by-step instructions which take you all the way from a blank piece of board to a finished portrait painting in oils.

45:10-46:47

Conclusion – Where to Find Kate Online

In the concluding chapter of this interview, Kate tells you where to see more of her work online and follow her on her various social media channels.


We hope this week’s interview with Kate Oleska gives you lots of insights into becoming an illustrator or an artist.

Perhaps you’ve got some great tips or experiences of your own you’d like to share?

Tell us about them in the comments section below – we’d love to hear from you!

People on this Episode:

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Thanks for listening to our show! We’ll be back next Wednesday morning 8AM EST.

Cheers,

Mitch

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