Growing up, Michael William Lester thought of illustration as a kind of magic. “My dad used to draw a lot,” recalled the creative in an interview with Lecture in Progress. “As a kid, I would go to bed and he would ask me if I wanted a surprise drawing or something in particular. It was kind of magic to never see the process, it fuelled my intrigue – how was it done, how could I do it?”
According to Lester, this early introduction to illustration proved to have a huge influence on his career choice. Now a full-time designer, animator, and yes—illustrator—his work is often clean and minimal, cutting straight to the chase.
Having studied fine art in college, in turn, had led him to illustration at the university. “These two steps helped me progress more naturally into animation,” he explains. “If I’d have gone straight into animation I’d have missed out on improving my visual style and writing skills.”
Some of his more viral work include the world’s smallest portfolio and his character buildings (where he animated architectural landmarks, adding them some quirky personalities). “Personal projects allow you to steer your career,” says Lester, “it’s much more difficult to control where you are heading if you only do client work.”
See some of his more recent work in the gallery below: