Nishant Choksi’s editorial illustrations are sometimes described as cartoons for grown-ups. Witty but easily accessible, they convert complex ideas into humorous snippets. Based in Brighton, UK, Choksi’s character illustration has attracted some of the biggest names, including publications like The Guardian and Vanity Fair and brands like Vodafone and Dyson.
“This job has infinite potential,” he remarked once in an interview with Lecture in Progress, describing the most and least enjoyable aspects of his job. “A client can contact you at any time, from anywhere in the world – this unpredictability is always exciting,” he notes. “When you do get a job, the sketch phase – looking for the idea and getting the right concept – is a lot of fun, even though you always have the fear of not solving it.”
On the other end, one of the least enjoyable aspects of being an illustrator for hire, according to Choksi, is when you are given the idea to illustrate. “This means the client has taken away your voice and you’re left with just your style,” he explains. “That can feel a bit superficial.”
Luckily, his award winning work means that he is mostly given a free hand to do as he pleases. “Over the years, I have learnt that to stay relevant you must stay interested in your own work,” Choksi observes. “For ten years, I had a successful career working on the computer, producing vector illustrations, but I wanted to go back to the work I produced in college, with brush and ink. I worried I would lose all my clients, but despite these concerns I had to make that change as this is where my interest lay. I lost clients in advertising, but gained many others.”
You’d want to join in the hype.