From Paper To iPad
HWM Singapore|January 2020
Michael Ng (@mindflyer), Illustrator and founder llustration Arts Fest
Marcus Wong

Where do you get your inspiration from? What kickstarted illustration as a career?

There was no sudden Eureka moment along my long journey as an illustrator - very simply, I’ve been obsessed with pictures in books since I was 6 or 7 years old! I’ve also been lucky to meet lots of great people who have inspired me, gave me opportunities, and taught me some of their tips along the way. After a few freelance projects — when I still had zero experience or training — I realised how much I enjoyed working with brands on commissioned drawings and I’ve been continuing to work since 1989.

What are some of the tools that help you in your work over the years?

I still keep a paper notebook, just like when I first started - way before computers and the internet. However, my digital workflow is getting more reliant on my iPad Pro, which I use with notetaking and productivity with apps like Notes, OneNote, and Google Keep. I also use apps like Evernote, Instagram, and Pinterest to store images, text and links that inspire me.

In terms of workflow, I like doodling my initial ideas on my phone and iPad in OneNote, and once I shortlist these ideas, I copy them over and work on them in detail using creative apps like Procreate or Adobe Fresco. Then, to finalise the artwork, I bring it into either Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator on my MacBook Pro.

I used to travel with a bulky drawing tablet together with my laptop, but in the recent years have found that just traveling with an iPad alone gets the same job done - it’s so much more convenient and lightweight.

How has the illustration scene changed from when you first started?

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