Alastair Graham - Impressions

Several years ago, when I was still in high school, I came across some drawings of jazz musicians in JAZZIZ (I think) Magazine at my grandparent's house. I remember being pretty stunned by them. After that, I had forgotten the artist's name and had trouble finding the work anywhere. For all these years I've had these drawing in the back of my mind. Fast forward to two days ago and I run across one of the pieces, an illustration of Herbie Hancock, and learn that they were done by UK-based animator and illustrator Alastair Graham.

According to Jazz::Animated, Graham was a producer at TVC London, the studio that created The Beatles' animated film "The Yellow Submarine". Being a passionate jazz enthusiast, at one point he pitched an animated video to the late Joe Zawinul of Weather Report. Unfortunately the label turned it down due to budget issues. He's also done a variety of animation, books and album covers, shown in his portfolio.

The work I had seen was his Jazzfolio collection, a collection of 71 illustrated portraits of popular jazz musicians that took him 12 years to complete. I love them for how surreal and detailed they are, and how he was able to capture so well the personality of each musician. It's hard to pick a favorite, but I'd say I love Herbie Hancock, Bill Evans, Airto Moreira (top) and Marcus Miller (below). You can view the entire collection on his Jazzfolio website. You can also order the book through the store, which I'm hoping will arrive in my mail box soon.

Alastair Graham
Impressions: The Story of a Collection

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