There’s a New Illustrator in Town: StudioGillian

StudioGillian has the tools if you have the projects.

Gillian Hébert is a very hard-working student in the third year of the Graphic Design Program here at Canadore College. She is always looking for new opportunities to share her illustrative work with the world. During her time as a student, Gillian has illustrated two children’s books that are now published and available for purchase! Gillian loves sketching and using watercolour to create her illustrations. With these mediums, she is able to capture emotion and movement on paper. As an inspiration to all her fellow classmates, we can’t wait to see what she creates next!

Interview with Gillian: Illustrating “The Tree” and “The Colours of a Dream”

How did you get involved with your most recent project?

This illustration project was bestowed upon me through a Facebook contest. My friend Cassandra Beauchamp tagged me, and I just had to enter. The author, Kim St-Onge, was looking for an artist who would be able to convey emotion in a tree without using a face (human features).

So, I did many sketches for her and ultimately ended up winning. This all sort of happened by chance, and I was fortunate to get the opportunity.

The Tree Book Cover
How long did the illustrations take to complete?

The project started in March 2020, and I’ve just finished the last page; it is November 3, 2020. The project went on hiatus during the months of July-September 2020.

Overall, the pages themselves only take about 4 hours to paint with watercolour. That includes sketching and drying time.

What was your favourite part of this project?

The best part about this project would have to be the character design. That is my favourite part of illustration. I like creating characters that have emotion, that viewers can really connect with. I love the way the author gave me complete freedom to draw the characters, backgrounds, and add details however I wanted. With some guidance from the stories she had provided, I was free to create anything and everything that the story allowed me to visualize.

What was the hardest part?

The hardest part about the project was the pandemic. Like many others, I felt the strain Covid-19 put on us. Cabin fever set in early and it was hard to motivate myself to create something colourful and fun when I myself was blue and tired. Once September hit and I was able to reunite with my classmates and family through zoom and skype, I felt better. My classmates gave me some inspiration and I got myself back on schedule. Now I have finally completed book number two!

Signed copies of “The Tree” and “The Colours of a Dream” are now printed and available for purchase for $20 ea.  Email Gillian for details.



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Shirley Mondoux, M.Ed, BFA, RGD
Program Coordinator, Professor

Phone: 705.474-7601 ext. 5241



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The graphic design program at Canadore College is a challenging, rewarding and provides students with a breadth of skills to enter this constantly expanding industry.

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