With her unique style and passion for food, it’s hardly surprising that Livi Gosling spends most of her time illustrating food and wine. With work featured in Jamie magazine, Sweden’s Fool and more recently, London Food Essentials, we speak to Livi about the art of illustration and her love of cheese.
Did you always want to be an illustrator?
I always knew that I wanted a career in art and design but it wasn’t until my art foundation year that I discovered illustration and that was it really.
What do you like to illustrate?
Since graduating, I have focused on food and wine illustration. My first was for Jamie Magazine - a food map of Dublin. This lead to a larger commission to illustrate Magnus Nilsson’s article about Swedish food history for Fool Magazine. I loved learning about Swedish food culture. I then worked for Zizzi and from then on it was onwards and upwards, working a variety of food and travel editorials, maps and narrative commissions.
How would you describe your style?
Inky! You can definitely tell that I work by hand. You might see an ink splatter here or there. I use photoshop in the latter stages of a project and I love the versatility of working on the computer. However, If I was going to be categorised by an illustration agency, I would definitely be in the hand-made section.
What are projects are you currently working on?
I’ve just completed some illustrations for Tresco Island - it’s a small island off the coast of Cornwall.I am also doing a collaboration project with The Key Print House - doing some illustrations for table linen and I’m about to start my next map for London Food Essentials. 2014 is shaping up pretty well.
What would be your dream illustration job?
I’d really love to illustrate a cookbook. Not necessarily the pages that show what the food is supposed to look like but the introductory, ingredient and history pages, and ones about the author. It would be lovely to see my hand-drawn type used in chapter headings. I think cookbooks could benefit a lot from illustration.
In terms of illustration, who inspires you?
I really like the work of Nicolas John Firth - he did the illustrations for FOOD DIY: How to make your own everything by Tim Hayward. I also find Jeff Fisher's work a constant source of inspiration.
Who is your UK food hero?
Gizzi Erskine. She's one stylish lady. Also the lovely Nigel Slater.
What is your favourite British food?
Cheese. I've been getting mine Marlowe & House in St Albans (@MarloweAndHouse).
What London food experience are you prepared to share?
I’ve recently discovered Lina Stores in Soho. It's a great place for any foodie and I got extremely excited about all the different types of flour. I also really like Euston Tap (@eustontap) - it’s a cute little place, tiny in fact, where you can discover a great selection of English ales and ciders.
You can see Livi Gosling's portfolio here.