Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Patti Gay

How did you become an illustrator?
For as long as I can remember I have always been driven to draw and paint. I don’t think I really thought I would be anything else.
Did you go to art school?
Yes, I went to Columbus College of Art and Design. It gave me a great foundation to build on. There were some pretty spectacular illustrators in my classes. I think that I learned a lot from them as well. My favorite class was Color Concepts where we learned to graph and work with color using the Munsell color method. I still use that knowledge in everything I paint.
Were there one or more individuals that were an influence in your becoming an illustrator?
I used to draw and paint a lot with my mom. She was very creative. The love of it grew from there.
What inspires you now?
Everything around me is inspiring. I look at all kinds of art and typography and am really inspired by the way I see artists approach a project. I also live in a beautiful area full of nature. I have wisteria blooming outside my studio window with steller jays hopping about it. There are majestic redwoods, lace like ferns and a myriad of blooming  wonders to enjoy.
I am also inspired by my son’s love of painting beautiful textures. He is autistic and has a whole sensorial experience with the paint and paper. I use his textures to create images that are now in the Two Can Art Collection of art.
Is there anything you would like to share about your technique or style?
I love to explore beyond my comfort zone. I have paintings that very tight watercolors and others that are loose acrylics. I will sometimes do a painting based upon an area that I find difficult like working with water reflections and light. I am starting to work with pattern and texture which I find really exciting. I work both traditionally and digitally.
What types of markets do you do illustration for?
I have done picture books. I have a golden book called CATS and I have recently done a couple of e-books, Friends, Amanda and Max and animals MUST BE.
They are on Barnes and Noble. I am represented by The Herman Agency for books.
I also do art for licensing. I have images on all types of products like cards, cutting boards, tiles, stickers, gift bags, and needlepoint. I also have some 3-d characters that have been licensed from the Amanda and Max book. I am excited that a Two Can Art image is going to be used for platters and plates next season. I will be exhibiting for the first time solo at the big art licensing show, Surtex this May. I had always been represented by an agent there in the past and am excited about the experience.

Are there any links to your images you would like to share?
website: www.pattigay.com
book agent:  
Friends , Amanda and Max e-book:
animals MUST BE e-book:
Are there any other creative interests you persue?
I have been working on writing for picture books, and belong to a wonder writing critique group from SCBWI. They are all wonderful writers and I have learned a lot from them.
Do you currently have products with your images on the market?
Yes, I have cutting boards, tiles, gift bags, and cards on the market. I also have the 2 e-books and have a site to sell prints on demand for the Two Can Art images.
What is the thing you love best about what you do?
I can’t wait to get into my studio. I feel incredibly lucky to have what ever time I have there. There is something so wonderful about taking an idea and bringing it to fruition.
I can’t imagine doing anything else. I love it!


  1. You are a very creative lady and it has been nice getting to know you a little better through this interview. I particularly like your reflections painting. Good luck for Surtex.

  2. Wonderful illustrations Patti! You are such a talent! Best of luck at Surtex!

  3. Nice work Patti! Wishing you the best at the show and see you there!!

  4. Patti, I love your illustrations and those which Jerry kindly sent to Belfast are framed and on display in my daughter's room. She adores them all, especially the peacock!! Wishing you safe travels and the very best of luck with the show! Warm wishes
    Roisin xx

  5. Thank you all for the very kind comments. Roisin, I'm so glad your daughter likes the cards.
    I am excited to see how Surtex goes and am looking forward to seeing and meeting so many talented artists there.

  6. Great job, Patti! I love reading your interviews, always. Cool to see extra bits of your art.

  7. Great interview Patti, I loved to learn more about you and see your varied art styles!