Spotlight on Holman Wang

Holman Wang will be speaking and demonstrating his craft at the Annual 2018 Illustrator’s Breakfast on October 13. We asked him a few questions to get to know him better. Here’s what he had to say . . .

Is there an art medium you have never tried but always wanted to? If you could, what would you do with it?

Digital illustration! My work is so tactile and materials-based that sometimes I fantasize about creating art “virtually.” No scrounging for materials, no mess, no clean-up! I dream about producing a graphic novel.

Do you have a special place that you go to for inspiration? Tell us about it and why it works?

I learned somewhere once that non-verbal, repetitive, physical action spurs creativity. I’ve found this to be true, as I often get my best ideas just walking my dog around the neighbourhood. I walk along the tree-lined streets of Grandview-Woodland, an area which I love.

What other jobs have you done besides children’s book illustrator?

I have been a lawyer since 2006, and am still currently practicing. I’ve also taught ESL, worked in the marketing department for the Arts Club Theatre Company, and worked as a Customs Inspector at YVR.

Tell us about a museum or art gallery that you have visited that you really enjoyed and would recommend to others.

I love the Beaty Biodiversity Museum out at UBC. It has over two million specimens (mostly in drawers), as well as an 82-foot skeleton of a female blue that was once buried in PEI (which happens to be the subject of a picture book by a friend). My kids love the museum, too.

What was your favourite book as a child?

I loved a curious little classic called Hands, Hands, Fingers, Thumb (“One thumb, one thumb, drumming on a drum.”). When I got older, I was obsessed with a book called The Big Book of Amazing Facts. Kidlit non-fiction at its best!