Up and Coming in Cornwall – Droll Tellers

Today Droll Tellers Coveryou’re going to be reading some quick fire questions I asked to Briony, Josh and Tashi; three illustrators based in Cornwall. I’m not quite sure how I stumbled across this artistic troika on the line, but I’m sure glad I did. I’m going to be asking them about their recently finished and totally brilliant zine Droll Tellers.

So what’s a droll teller? Well… before independent book shops, long before megabookshops like Waterstones, wandering ‘droll tellers’ used to tell stories and sing songs to all parts of the Duchy. The illustrative trio’s zine features three stories (one from each of them). If after you’ve had a gander at the interview below, you like the look and sounds of this awesome triad of stories then you can buy it on etsy here (it’s definitely worth some of your hard earned!)

Tell us a about yourselves?
We are three third year students at Falmouth university, all studying Illustration.

Why did you all decide to study in Cornwall? Where did you move from?
The Illustration course was really appealing. Home life and uni life are very separate. Tashi comes from Brighton, Briony comes from Berkshire, and Josh is from all over the place.

Cornwall map Droll Tellers
What do you like most about studying in Falmouth?
Cornwall is very idyllic and its an inspiring and artistic place to be. It’s great to be walking distance from the beach, and knowing you’re right beside the sea.

Tell us about your Cornish folklore project?
We really wanted to do a collaboration because we have similar interests and we could see our work would sit well together. After a lot of deliberation we decided to choose a theme that made the most of our time in Cornwall. We are all interested in folklore, which is an important part of the Cornish culture.

Which stories did you choose and why?
We approached the project with the idea that the zines would have themes, so we decided an appropriate one to start with would be ‘Sea.’ So we all chose a sea related Cornish folktale which we put our own spin on. These were, ‘The Great Wrath,’ The Phantom Ship’ and The Mermaid of Zennor.’

Cornish Mermaid

How do you create you images, what do you use?
We all use primarily pencil, and photoshop to colour the images.

How did you work as a team?
FANTASTICALLY. We all had a similar goal in mind for the project, and we’re good friends.

If you could illustrate any story, what would it be?
We all love folklore and historical tales, so anything of that nature! This project itself was very indulgent.

Droll Tellers

Which illustrators do you most admire now?
So many! Natalie Andrewson, Emily Carroll, Kate Beaton, Joe Todd Stanton, Luke Pearson, Mikkel Sommer and Isabel Greenberg are just a few.

What does your workspace look like?
We mainly work in our university studio and at home, bit of a bomb site but lots of inspirational images around us. Tashi and Josh are lucky enough to have a sea view.

What do you aspire to do in your career?
We all aspire to be freelance illustrators, we all love narratives and graphic novels. But also, Briony and Josh would love to work on children’s books and Tashi would love to go into animation.

Droll Tellers

What’s your favourite thing to draw?
Briony really enjoys burly, hairy men, mermaids and fairies, Tashi loves old men in big coats, knights and landscapes. Josh really digs swords, forests and adventures.

If you had one last day in Cornwall, what would you do?
Go tree climbing, rock pooling, eat fish and chips and try something we should have done the whole time we were here. Like paddle boarding and trying to find Merlin’s cave.

You’re creating one of your fantastic prints, what’s playing in the background?
Folky stuff for Briony! Perfect for coming up with Cornish narratives. But really it’s a bit of everything. Right now it’s druidic playlists from youtube for Josh, and Tashi listens to Bonobo as it’s nice and ambient.

If you’d like to check out more work from the talented trio, you have my instruction to check them out here:

Briony: http://brionymaysmith.tumblr.com
Josh: http://josholiverillustration.tumblr.com
Tashi: http://tashireeve.tumblr.com


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