my shiny new design site

You know… it can get a little awkward when I chat to professionals who say that they haven’t got a website yet and they really should get around to that. Then they ask if I have one :-) And I have to admit to having more than one. Well, (haha) now I have one more. It’s one of the problems of having many facets to a job – think of it as a hat stand perhaps for the many hats I wear? I am also trying to simplify the sites and make them have less cross-over. It’s tricky – where do you draw the line between parts of a job? Anyway, this one has lots of fun stuff on it.

elise hurst designs

This one is dedicated to the various commissioned projects I undertake, some of which have remained rather quiet until now. I have chocolate characters and book jackets, paintings and drawings, a cd cover, calendars and many more that I am still adding. I still have to add a stamp and a door.

I’d love your feedback!

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A new Koko Black commission

So my secret job of the last week was to work on a new painting for Koko Black. This one is for their Christmas boxes and it was interesting to think of what iconic elements of Christmas to involve in the design – while still doing something that different and particular to my style. As the Easter painting was set indoors, I wanted this one to be in a completely different space. At first I toyed with forests and snow scenes, giant trees and magical lights.

At this point I must say that I really love how in Australia we generally have no problem with appropriating European Christmas trappings and popping them everywhere in the middle of a blazing hot summer. Maybe it’s because we are a bit of a magpie nation – we collect people of all backgrounds and take on our favourite bits of their cultures (whether we understand them or not). I especially love seeing fake snow sprayed onto windows. My grandfather had a log ‘fire’ with lights and orange cellophane for effect. It’s about the best you can do in 40° C.

Where we went with the design revolves around the experience of walking down a street with glittering window displays and people shopping for friends and family. It’s a little more idealised than we are used to (no huge crowds, for example) and there are some of my trademark surreal elements and characters. I really hope I don’t have to wait for December to show you… I’ll ask.

While we wait, here is the Easter painting again, on view in the Koko Black Salon in The Royal Arcade, Melbourne. If you didn’t see it, there is a YouTube video of the painting happening in timelapse. I’m doing the same for the Christmas one.

   I wouldn’t mind a hot chocolate myself, right about now…

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Rabbit drawing

I’m taking a few minutes to work on a character for my new book. She will be in painted in oils eventually but I’m still practising her and working on her wardrobe and demeanour.


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Things I wish I knew before…

There is such a big list of those – but specificially I was asked for three things I wish I had known when I was starting out as an illustrator. The article, written by Larissa Ham, was published in today’s edition of The Age. Cool!

We asked a successful illustrator, two entrepreneur mates and a young franchising go-getter what they’d do differently if they had their time again.

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A glimpse of the Convent market

It was a beautiful day on Sunday at the Abbotsford Convent and here is a glimpse of it on ONCE’s blog.

Check out Bronwyn’s gorgeous creations while your at it.

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One Word One Day

There was a great group of illustrators in the foyer of the ABC studio in Melbourne today. We started at 10 and drew until 2.30 and, as you can probably guess, I needed all of that time for mine! The theme was ‘Hairy’ and I thought I’d do something a little dreamy. I’m really happy with it!
The picture is A3 sized, in pen and a touch of watercolour and will be auctioned off with everyone else’s in September. I’ll keep you posted for when its happening in case you’re feeling like your walls are a little bare!

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Mondoodle 18-03-2013

Yesterday a gang of us went to Carlton Primary School and hung out with the kids there… doing a little teaching, a little drawing and a fair bit of silly entertaining. It was fabulous fun and the kids were brilliant. Hello to everyone I met from Carlton Gardens PS and CPS!

Here is one of the pictures I drew under the kids’ direction. It’s a sneaky vampire monster.



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Sneak peek

Here’s another sneak peek from the book. It’s a picture that I redid after finally seeing the whole book together. It’s interesting, that final stage of work. Toward the end of a long book, I often find that my style and technique have developed over time so that, when I look back, my early pictures are subtly different. So at the end, I have to go back and bring them all into line. In this case, the previous version of this image had been crazily busy, trying to incorporate too many ideas. With a fresh eye I could see that those details were no where near as important as an engaging image that focuses on the characters. I’m happy with it now :-)

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There are no words for my relief and joy tonight! I have finished my book. For the last 6 weeks I have worked till 2am (on average ) to get it done and used every moment I reasonably could. I feel like I did 4 months work in one. It’s been crazy. And in the last 3 days its been a completely weird roller coaster… My legs were burned by coffee but I worked on to finish off the last details of a batch of 12 images at 3am, then the next morning I completely rewrote the text in a moment of inspiration and finally (OMG) got the perfect words (felt like a lightening bolt), then I did my back, and now, suddenly I am finished. It’s surreal! I’m so tired I can’t tell you. But so elated. It’s been a marathon. And the heat we’ve suffered thorough hasn’t helped! I’m a little sore and broken, but I did it and I LIKE it. It might be the best work I’ve ever done. No, I think I can say it is. Halle-frikken-looyah!

This is the final picture. The whole book is big and surreal and detailed and intricate and full on. It’s why I have been AWOL from, well, the world for a bit. Hello world, I’m coming back now! After a sleep. Please excuse me if I missed an email – remind me! Or didn’t return a call – sorry! I’ve been in a twilight zone of industry.

Now off to bed :-) Soooo early!

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City book progress

Here’s a new bit of the book I’m working on :-) Pterodactyls! I was working late last night with music playing and the pen flying. So much fun!


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