Illustration Exhibition – Talya Baldwin


Carrying on from the fun fair theme, I came across some work by Talya Baldwin, whilst browsing on her site. Talya has used the fun fair theme style typography within some of her illustration work, yet they are hand-drawn.



I love how precise and clean the hand-drawn typography sits in the left hand corner, balancing the detailed pencil-drawn elephant in the bottom right hand corner.

Talya uses a range of media including; pencil, ink and paint. You can see the refined mark making in her illustrations and in some of her work, she has used old sheets of paper or postcards as a base and applied her work on top. This is demonstrated in the image above (La Belle Boutique).

I recently visited an exhibition of Talya Baldwin’s, in Leeds, Yorkshire. It’s a solo exhibition displaying human and animal characters, as well as botanical pieces. These are drawn on A2 paper and pinned delicately on the gallery wall. Some are cut out and strategically positioned around the room to catch your eye – adding an extra element of interest. The characters and found objects that Talya has drawn are that which are lost, unwanted or marginalized and who do not sit comfortably in the common imagination of storytelling or have not won a place in history.

Exhibition Poster

bowery flyer


Exhibition pieces that caught my eye:











Close up of above male character


You can really see all the fine pencil mark-making detail and how Talya emphasises and adds texture in the male character’s skin tone. She also appears to make each eye different in scale i.e. obscuring the facial features. Her work is quirky and detailed, and drawn in a mature way, that would appeal to both a younger and an older audience.

I love Talya’s illustrations. They seem surreal, yet grotesque when you look more closely. I think Talya’s work is meant to provoke an emotional reaction. For example,the grand dame’s hat is made of star fish, newts and an octopus. On another illustration,you can see a pair of octopuses tentacles positioned either side on a lady’s head. She’s like the Marmite in the illustration world – you would either like or dislike her illustrations, and I love them!

Here is the link to her website