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In The Spotlight: Ash Schmitt

Ash Schmitt is an illustrator from Perth, WA. Ash turned his passion for drawing in to his job, and now a day never feels like work. Here’s a little Q&A we did with Ash on what it’s like to follow your dreams and keep at it. If you would like to look at more of Ash’s work, head to Further, Ash has also just released a book, ‘Big Softie’, where his main inspiration, Kanye West, becomes the most lovable man in the world. 

Q: Hey Ash thanks for your time, love your Insta feed and the style of your illustrations! I know you may cop this question a bit but what inspires your work and how did you come about such a field of work?

Thanks for the kind words! Music is my biggest inspiration. Kanye is King though, Bob Dylan too, I like eccentric people.  I’ve always liked creating things, including music, and drawing is the only one I’ve been semi good at so I stuck with it and here we are.

Q: Talk us through the process involved in getting a bit of work from an idea to a product?

The idea process is the fun part. I’ll get an idea while I’m having a shower, or driving usually and can’t wait to start drawing it. Then I will make a reference board when I get to a computer and plan the piece. Then drawing is the only part that feels remotely like work.

Q: In past interviews we have seen how social media has played a huge role with the shifting nature of advertising and promotions for bloggers and photography professionals. For your field of work, which is quite unique, how have you seen the role of the ever-expanding social media platform?

Without Instagram there would be no way I would be drawing for a living. 95% of my work comes from people who find me on Instagram. It also makes the long hours I might spend on a piece feel worth it when you post it and get a bunch of nice people saying nice things about it.

Q: So what’s next on the agenda? Where do you hope for your brand and work to be in 5 years’ time?

I’ve just finished my biggest project to date, “Big Softie”, which is a book about the lovable Kanye West. That took a heap of work so now I am going to spend a few months working on commissions and random personal projects. Then I will plan another big project and try make it better than the first.  In 5 years’ time I really just hope to still be getting paid to draw, it doesn’t feel like work.

Q: And finally, any bits of advice you would have for budding illustrators or even on a broader level anyone chasing their dream with start-ups?

Stick at it, because personally it took over a decade for me to find my style, or where I could take my drawing, and if I had of chucked it in prematurely I wouldn’t be able to get up every day and do something I love.


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