N America News April 2017

52 NORTH AMERICA NEWS / APRIL 2017 , Capturingmoments. Finding Dreamers. Illustration: Life as you perceive and interpret it. Marty Jones has worked as a freelance illustrator for over 40 years, with clients across the world. We got in touchwithMarty to find out more about his career as a freelance illustrator, a somewhat ‘disappearing’ craft in today’s world. A ‘Sense of Wonder’ Marty Jones has worked as a freelance illustrator for over 40 years, with clients across the world. So far, Marty has illustrated seven children’s books, 2 books for adults, created numerous illustrations for a variety of clients; including Scholastic Inc. and the Yellowstone Park Foundation. As a building code consultant, Marty has worked with many of the architects in Portland, assisting with the design of commercial buildings of many scales. Marty has worked with The City of Portland’s General Services, some of the universities in the Portland Metropolitan area, as well as general contractors and building designers. All of Marty’s work as a consultant is supplemented by technical illustrations. Marty works extensively with digital manipulation and photo enhancement; and also with small-scale video production. In 2015, Marty added digital publishing to the business; publishing four titles in the first year. Marty’s retail store can be viewed at https://society6.com/ mjartscom. Marty is committed to communicating a ‘sense of wonder’ to the world. Using hand-drawn and digital media, he creates images in a manner that reflects the contributions of the great illustrators of the twentieth century; in a format suited to the twenty-first century. In terms of Marty’s background, he does not remember a time that he didn’t draw. “I began drawing ‘seriously’ in high school and intended to become a technical illustrator” he explains. “Lack of planning and foresight led me to a degree in Architecture, instead of an education in art. Further distractions, such as a ‘lack of work’ led me to two construction- related careers. I left my career with the City of Portland [Building Plans Examiner] in 1998, due to medical challenges. Today, I am doing the work I aspired to do, but it does look different than what I expected. I have made new decisions about the quality of life I want to live.” “The biggest challenges I’ve faced are figuring out how to be a successful father of three [now adult] children; while balancing the responsibilities of a career; and the overcoming of chronic pain and neurological issues for most of my adult life. “The physical limitations have been teaching me to only take on the work that I am best at doing; so as to make sure that I keep my commitments to my clients. Pain is a sensation; and its purpose is to get our attention. Pain does not have to be an obstacle that can’t be surmounted. It can be ‘overcome’ through faith, compassion and determination.” When undertaking a new project, or working with a new client, Marty believes that the most important part of the project is listening, and verifying that his view of a project matches the client’s view of the same. In terms of communication with his clients, Marty uses technology to some extent to do this, but he prefers writing and providing illustrative sketches when necessary. This approach ensures that he fully understands the needs of the clients. Considering the industry in America today, Marty underlines that illustration and advertising has changed dramatically during his career, something very easily evidenced if you pick up a magazine, watch a movie or a television commercial. Explaining this interesting point further, Marty explains that, “every movie that Marvel puts out influences all the visual images in America; what generally isn’t mentioned are the hundreds of artists and technical people across the world that are creating those images. They set ‘the bar’ very high.” “The children’s illustration market is mostly concerned about celebrity ‘authors’ and what book made the most money last week. The taste in illustration seems to lean toward cartoons, which I don’t do.” Furthermore, Marty focuses very firmly on the quality of the products he produces. “I once knew a man who hand-tempered industrial saw blades using a heavy hammer. Beating on a huge piece of steel, all day long, in a precise manner. He did this work for 30-40 years. When he wasn’t at work he was a wood carver” he explains. “Our society has lost the concept of a ‘master craftsman’—one who has worked at his craft over decades, without ‘emerging developments’. I don’t know that I can be considered as a ‘master craftsman’—this isn’t a determination that can be made by the craftsman himself. This is the concept I’ve tried to emulate.” In terms of his aspirations of the future, Marty says that this is without a doubt to produce the best work that he can - continue to meet his client’s needs - and to get up each day and be the best person he can be. “I’m at a place in my career where I don’t need to be the most innovative supplier in the marketplace; that is the work of younger people who have ‘larger’ aspirations than doing work well” Marty underlines. “I plan on illustrating a number of the Sherlock Holmes stories that are now in the public domain. I grew up with a book series called ‘Classics Illustrated’ and the illustrations weren’t cartoons. I think those books were valuable for society. I’m currently working on a couple of books for clients; neither of which will make the best seller lists; but they are important stories. “The fact that someone has a lot of wealth does not mean that their life is fulfilling. No one ever gets to take a U-Haul trailer behind their hearse. After a 40- year career, I find my greatest pleasure comes from the accomplishments of my children and grandchildren. Being a slave to a career stole as much of my life as it provided. I’m grateful for every opportunity I’ve had; I’m grateful that I can make a difference in a world that seems to be spinning out of control. Most of the problems in our country today won’t be solved by the desire to have a better office.” 1703CA03

http://fairfaximaging.com/ http://www.becauseicare.jo/ http://www.eskadenia.com/ https://society6.com/