Penny Neville-Lee is a painter and illustrator who specialises in children's illustration that's enjoyed both both adults and children alike. Using a range of different mediums, both digital and traditional, she creates fresh and often detailed paintings which cast a wry eye on contemporary British life.
Penny has an MA in painting from The Royal College of Art and lives and works in London. A great believer in championing the work of other creatives, she is also is the creator of the Twitter-based art challenge #colour_collective.
Question 1 : Pencil or Paintbrush?
Oooh, this is a good one. So hard to choose though as I basically use everything when I'm drawing. Pencil to start the ball rolling (graphite or coloured depending on my mood), Brushpen which almost counts as a brush, my water-brushes and then a myriad of Kyle Webster digital brushes on Photoshop. They're all great! I suppose if I had to choose I'd choose my water brushes. I'd dismissed these little water filled beauties as faddish, but they're such a revelation! I can now do a background wash without having that annoying thing when the brush runs dry and you get that little line when you don't carry it on in time. I love them. I think all artists are a bit geeky about their materials and I could spend all day weighing up the merits of each brand and type. For another time...
Question 2 : Pizza or Curry?
But they're both so yummy! It would have to be curry purely on the basis that it is a meal that allows, nay encourages you to eat a plateful of crisps the size of your head.
Question 3 : Late Night or Early Morning?
This questions implies that I have choice between the two; as a parent to two small children it is standard practice to be up very early in the morning watching the same episode of Millie Inbetween for the 68th time. I do love working late at night though. Just me and Gideon Coe and the rumble of trains. I produce almost all of my work after the children are in bed so it would be impossible to conceive a working life without them. When I was making work for the first #illo_advent (a painting a day for the 24 days of advent), I drew my ideas out on the train to work, roughed them up in my lunch-hour and then painted them at night. I spent the whole of that December rolling into bed at midnight or 1am. I didn't indulge in any Christmas drinking either because I can't do a thing drawing wise after even a sniff of alcohol. No mulled wine for an entire festive period? That's dedication! I'm not quite such an night owl these days as I draw during daylight hours too, but there is a special sort of productivity that happens after the sun goes down.
Question 4 : Sofa or Gym?
Hurrah! Finally a question I can give an unequivocal answer to. It's the sofa of course. I kid myself that by being late and half running, half speed-walking to most of the things in my life (work, school run, shops etc), I remain in tip-top physical condition and eschew the need for a gym. Plus the sofa is such a better place for snoozing to Millie Inbetween on at 6 in the morning.
Question 5 : Midsomer Murders or Luther?
Midsomer Murders has an unofficial tag line in my house: 'Two hours of my life I'll never get back', and I've never had the pleasure of Luther though obviously Idris Elba is amazing. Can I cut the middle ground and say Vera?
If you'd like to see more of Penny's work, why not pop over to her site -