Illustration We Love: Molly Egan

Molly Egan is an illustrator based in Philadelphia, USA. We first came across her work on instagram and were immediately enamoured with her use of bright colours, fun gal characters and boss sketchbooks of patterns. We asked her some questions recently which she kindly answered!

1. We’ve been following you on instagram for awhile now and you are so prolific! How do you keep up your energy and motivation for creating?

Thanks so much! My kind of lame/not super helpful answer is that I just genuinely love drawing and painting. It’s honestly my favorite way to spend my time. To give it a bit more context, most of the time we’ve been in touch I was working a day job. It was not creative in the slightest, and I knew there was no future that involved me being happy there. That experience really motivated me to create as much as possible during my lunch breaks and when I got home.

Animation by Molly Egan

2. What’s your typical day look like?

I very recently left my day job to give freelancing full time a go. Since my studio is in my home, I have the benefit of rolling out of bed and being at work already. Every day still feels really special, since this has really been all I’ve ever wanted. I normally wake up around 7:30 and start out with something to warm up, like a small painting or a sketchbook spread. Then I work on whatever I planned for the day, sometimes it’s personal work and sometimes it’s client work. I’m typically in the studio until around 5:30 and spend the rest of the night hanging out with my boyfriend and my dog 🙂

Moody by Molly Egan

3. What do you listen to while you’re working? Any recommendations?

I go back and forth between music, podcasts, cartoons, and documentaries. I’ve been loving DAMN by Kendrick Lamar and Ctrl by SZA (but who hasn’t). For podcasts, I normally listen to Stuff You Missed in History Class and No Such Thing as a Fish.

Planter by Molly Egan

4. We really like the ceramics you’ve been making! Is there any medium you haven’t tried yet that you’d like to have a go at?

Thanks!! I’ve actually really wanted to try doing my paintings HUGE, either in a fine art setting or as murals. Not really a different medium, but it’s always something I’ve wanted to do. Keeping my fingers crossed that an opportunity comes up soon!

5. Have you got any big projects or fun plans coming up?

I’m working on a lot of sketchbooks which will be displayed at the Philadelphia Airport, which I’m super excited about! But I’m mainly working hard on building my own business and my own products.

6. What’s up in Philadelphia? Where would you take us on a guided tour?

Philadelphia is the best! I’ve lived here for 7 years, and it has really become my home. Philly has really become known for it’s great food. People always talk about cheesesteaks (ugh), but I’m always more interested in showing people the lovely, family owned restaurants… that actually serve good food. I love that there are very few chain restaurants that exist here.

If you came when it was warm, I’d absolutely take you on the Schuylkill River Trail for a bike ride. It goes past our incredible Art Museum and follows the river for miles and miles. I would also love to take you to the Magic Gardens. It’s an amazing outdoor space filled with mosaics, old dinnerware, bike wheels, etc. created by Isaiah Zagar. He also has mosaics all over the city.

7. Whose work are you admiring at the moment? Anyone/thing you want to big up?

I feel like I’m always finding new people that I love. There are so many cool people out there! Since we were just talking about Philly, I’d love to share some Philly area artists that I love with you.

Kevin Mercer 
Gina Triplett and Matt Curtius
Keith Warren Greiman
Martha Rich
Lizzy O’Donnell
Shannon Ryan
Loveis Wise

Swipe through above to see a selection of Molly’s sketchbooks. You can find her at her website or stalk her on instagram @mollytheillustrator like we do.

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