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Artist Feature: Colin Hesterly

Colin Hesterly is an animator first, illustrator second — but that’s not a bad thing. In fact, it’s what makes him so incredible. Colin started picking up illustration work to fill the time during the animation projects he was directing. His background in animation means that he’s incredibly fast. This makes him a great artist to work on brand illustrations that may need to become animated pieces or even full flown commercials. As an animator he’s worked with companies like USPS, Disney, American Express, Nickelodeon, Michelin and many others.

In short, Colin is an incredible collaborator, communicator, director and overall human being. We recently brought him on to the Closer&Closer roster and couldn’t wait to introduce you to him. Please enjoy this interview with the incredible, Colin Hesterly.

Tell us a little about yourself and your work.
I am an illustrator, animation director, and tiki enthusiast working within the creative industry. My work spans a wide range of artist fields, including everything from film titles to short films and beyond.

Describe a typical work day for you.
Each workday begins with some self-reflection. I typically journal, meditate and create a todo list for the day before addressing any emails I might have. Once I get all that silly business stuff out of the way, I begin the creative process. I usually eat a quick lunch, then head out for a walk and enjoy the sun. It's an excellent way to reset the internal palette for the rest of the day.

Which part of the creative process do you enjoy most?
The initial brainstorming process is my favorite alongside thumbnailing images. There's so much freedom in not knowing what to do.

Was there a striking moment in your life where you knew you had to become a designer/Illustrator?
Nah, I was always into art and illustration but never thought about a career in it. It feels like several bold steps that led me here.

What mediums do you enjoy working with most?
I was enjoying working with a Cintiq screen, haha. The computer allows me to makes mistakes and not second guess each stroke. For some reason, whether it's a pencil or paintbrush, I find myself putting too much pressure on each stroke as if they must be the most perfect ever.

If you had unlimited resources, what would your dream project look like?
A short animated film or a line of sick tiki shirts and paraphernalia.

Outside of your work, what other hobbies do you enjoy?
I enjoy anything that has to do with water. Also, hanging with my kids, and yes, I do enjoy showing off my tiki mug and rum collection.

What is your favorite show you’re watching right now?
I rarely watch tv shows. I'd much rather visit the cinema.

What was the last book you read that you really enjoyed?
Born Standing Up - By Steve Martin. I re-read this book every year, and it never gets old. 

What is a common creative block for you and how do you get unstuck?
My abilities or lack of often stand in the way. What I dream up and capable of are often two totally different things. But any time I get stuck on anything I go for a walk to clear the mind.

Outside of design, what do you do that inspires your creative pursuit?
Good question. I am not trying to redefine what my life outside of work looks like right now.

Are you an early bird or a night owl?
Early bird. I usually get up around 5:30 and go straight to the gym.

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