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Dublin: 3°C Monday 25 January 2021

5 brilliant Irish illustrators to follow, as recommended by artist Conor Nolan

It’s time to upgrade your Instagram feed.

IF YOU’RE LOOKING to upgrade your Instagram feed and inject it with colour, humour and perhaps a bit of inspiration, these five Irish illustrators might do just the trick. 

And who better to recommend illustrators to follow than someone in the field? Dublin-based illustrator, print-maker and designer Conor Nolan (@cnr_nln) rounded up for us five of his favourite Irish illustrators to follow on Instagram, as well as his favourite works of theirs.

Conor’s work typically consists of bold shapes and bright, limited colour palettes inspired by the aesthetics of screen printing and risograph printing, and you can check out his website here.

1.  Ruan Van Vliet (@ruan_van_vliet)

Ruan’s work popping up on my feed feels like a joke that skips the set-up and goes straight for the punchline. There’s a satisfying immediacy to his linework, drawn with thick crayons, that makes his work feel tangible and adds to the sense of wit that you see throughout his work, like this piece of Michael D Higgins and the Luke Kelly statue along the Royal Canal.

2. David McMillan (@davidjmcmillan)

David is an illustrator from Belfast currently based in Bristol. His work has a unique way of capturing the energy of his characters, which often fit into the space around each other in really clever compositions. David works in a lot of areas of illustration including packaging and editorial. This is my favourite piece of his.

3. Fiona McDonnell (@fionaamcd)

Another Belfast native, Fiona makes work full of interesting characters and gorgeous lettering, with a gorgeous hand-drawn quality, illustrating for gig posters, zines and clothing among other things.

4. Keith Kavanagh (@johnnycigarettex)

I first saw Keith’s work when he asked if he could put a piece in a skateboard art show I was putting on about five years ago and have loved it since. Keith draws some really creative and weird characters and animates them brilliantly.

5. Fatti Burke (@fattiburke)

View this post on Instagram

Fatti in Amsterdam #lekker

A post shared by Fatti Burke (@fattiburke) on

I’ve been a big fan of Kathi Burke’s work since I first came across it in college. Her playful and friendly illustrations have brought her to illustrating quite a few kids books over the last couple of years, and although she’s now based in Amsterdam there’s still a very Irish sense of humour to her work.

More: 7 former homes of famous Irish writers that you’d easily walk right past

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