Portfolio: Paul Hickey

Paul Hickey's grungy illustration mixes photocopied photographs and hand-drawn textures and linework.

What’s your favourite tool?

A photocopier. I create a lot of collages and having a photocopier nearby allows me to be much more experimental with my ideas and compositions.

What techniques to do you use most?

I primarily use pencil drawings and collage. I try to layer and combine them because I love the contrast between the two. The collage, which is mainly photography, provides a sense of reality that an illustration can’t always achieve. I feel this gives the outcome more impact. The drawings, on the other hand, let me be more free and expressive with ideas.

What’s your favourite piece you’ve created?

I think the best piece I’ve done is one of those featured here – the image of the boy being confronted by a crowd of people. I feel it illustrates my ideas perfectly. I think the simplest of ideas are also the strongest, which is what I tried to do with this piece of work. I aim for my work to be direct and easy to read, which I think this does.

What kinds of materials do you work with?

For my drawings, just pencils or pens. The collage elements are from various sources. I find a lot of images in books, magazines and photographs, which I find at markets. I’ve also started experimenting with Perspex and printing on acetate, which is an interesting way of layering work in more complex compositions.

What inspires you?

London is full of interesting places and people, which I try to translate in my work.

This piece is from Paul's Outsider series. It is inspired by feeling of isolation and not fitting in.

This piece is from Paul's Outsider series. It is inspired by feelings of isolation and not fitting in.

Entertainment looks at the concept of feeling like an ‘outsider’.

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