Photo by Jocelyn Lui
My name is Sean Hipkin. I am an illustrator and painter living in San Francisco, California. I graduated with high distinction from the California College of Art and Design with a Bachelor’s degree in Illustration.
Selected clients include Adobe, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, The National Wildlife Federation, Illustoria Magazine, Ladybug Magazine, Swift Industries, Tumbleweed Bicycle Co, and Bluelug bike shop in Japan.
My gallery work has been exhibited at Nahcotta, Rare Device, A Little Lodge, Woods Outbound, Fayes Video, and 3 Fish Studios.
What have you discovered about yourself through illustration?
I am both a dreamy romantic and very detail-oriented. I’ve tried to loosen up but it’s really, really hard for me. I have also discovered that I’m very process-driven – I need a reason to create. I deeply enjoy the process and focus that comes with making illustrations; but if I don’t have a creative vision to sit down and bring to life, I would rather be riding my bike searching for inspiration.
What materials do you use to create your work?
I use a chalky paint called gouache, colored pencils, and sometimes ink. I always paint on watercolor paper. If the illustration is for a client, I will finish the project digitally, with tools like Procreate or Photoshop. If the illustration is a commissioned original painting, or for a gallery show, then the piece is completely traditionally made.