Illustration for Digital Artist Magazine

Im Jason Ruddy, one half on the collaborative duo, Monster Riot. It is a pleasure to be this weeks Featured Artist on Thats My Folio.
By day I work as a freelance digital designer in London. All my illustration is produced in my spare time and usually at night (which explains why I always look so tired!). I studied Animation at University and graduated in 2006.

When I left University my first job as an animator was at the famous Passion Pictures. I worked on a commericial for 3 weeks and after that I decided the world of freelance animation wasnt for me. I somehow fell into digital design by accident as I actually applied for a flash animation position and the role slowly evolved and turned into a graphic design one instead. Eventually (after 4 years of hard work) I had the confidence to go it alone and become a freelance digital designer. Monster Riot was born out of having that little bit more spare time and also wanting to work with my wife as she likes to produce toys out of felt and other fabrics. I see the collaboration as a way to use bold colours and be quite experimental in terms of character design and humour. Hopefully people like what we do as we love doing it!

All my illustrations start off as very crude doodles in a sketch book. Most of my ideas usually come to me when Im out and about (so I always carry a sketch book with me) or when Im in the shower (I dont have one here as it will get wet and my drawings will run!). I then explore the idea in more depth and draw it out using pencil and paper. When Im happy with the final result I usually scan it in and the rest is produced in Photoshop. I try to avoid software like Illustrator as I dont like my work to look too clean. I like illustration that looks handmade and is a little rough around the edges as it adds more character to the piece.

As a duo we have only be active for just over a year. In that time we have already achieved a client list that we are very proud of. They include Threadless, TJunk, Advanced Photoshop Magazine, Digital Artist Magazine and Pictoplasma. Im also about to do my first collaboration with a fellow illustrator which is really exciting – Ill reveal more when weve completed the project!

Due to Pictoplasma I have been exhibited in Paris, Berlin and New York. We plan to have our own exhibition at some point (lets hope people turn up to look at the work!).

In the following months I will be working on some projects away from Monster Riot as I have another style I have been developing and will be using for some picture books I have written. Ill be looking to approach some publishers over the following months to see if theyre interested in what Ive produced, so fingers crossed!

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