A long time ago, when I was a Creative Director for a small (yet quietly international) publishing house in Norwich, I used to dream of commissioning Brian Cairns. I never did and I’m ashamed to say, in the intervening years, he had completely slipped my mind. Until the other day that is, when I was reading The Observer in bed and I came across one of his illustrations. What a lovely reminder of his talent – it was like finding an unexpected tenner in your wallet.
There are other illustrators I admire that use lovely loose brush strokes with simple compositions. But there’s just something about Mr Cairns’ work that sets him apart from the rest. I have picked three examples of his work for you to feast your eyes on and if you don’t know of him already, hopefully this will give you a ‘Observer in bed’ moment too. (Does that last sentence read a bit dodgy? Oh, you know what I mean).
Like any illustrator worth their salt, Mr Cairns has a beautiful, simple web site, displaying even more of his work. Visit the Brian Cairns Studio and see for yourself.
All images © 2008-2009 Brian Cairns.