If you work in a creative discipline, it's important to check out the work of others in your field, to help you get inspired and generate new ideas of your own.
To celebrate International Women's Day, we've put together a great selection of awesome female graphic designers and illustrators that it's worth keeping an eye on.
Our list covers a wide range of disciplines, different approaches, and levels of experience, but everyone here has a knockout portfolio that's well worth checking out.
1. Jane Bowyer
Jane Bowyer is a graphic designer and illustrator based in Manchester, UK. Previously senior designer at Raw Design Studio, she now works as an independent designer, illustrator and consultant. Her practice balances playfulness with purpose, to deliver work that is both beautifully crafted and leaves a lasting impression. She is also the curator and creator of Women in Print. She is also the commissioned illustrator behind Creative Boom's International Women's Day takeover week. Thank you, Jane!
Abbey Lossing is an illustrator based in Brooklyn. Having worked as a staff illustrator at BuzzFeed and then Vice News, she took the leap into full-time freelance in 2017, and her clients now include Facebook, Target, Google, The New York Times and The Washington Post. Working with a Cintiq in Photoshop, she loves to integrate patterns into her work, which is often inspired by fashion and textiles.
Born in Normandy and now based in Paris, Agathe Singer worked as a graphic designer at an advertising agency until 2013, when she left to become a full-time freelance illustrator. Her work is reminiscent of her childhood dreamy garden, exploring a universe of colourful and native fauna and flora, with special attention to birds and flowers. Her first book, Anywhere, Anytime Art: Gouache, was recently published by Quarto Group.
Daniella Ferretti is a Chilean illustrator who currently lives and works in Barcelona. Represented by Anna Goodson, she has a colourful, conceptual style of illustration that mixes digital shapes with organic textures and is inspired by nature, travels and daily life.
Born in Stockholm and based in Barcelona, Petra took a journey via Dublin and Malta on her way to becoming an illustrator. Working mainly in Adobe Illustrator, she creates bold imagery that’s awash with bright colours and anchored with strong compositions.
Alexandra Francis is an illustrator and designer based in Manchester. With a background in fine art, in 2017 she decided to switch career paths and study graphic design at Shillington. She currently works as a designer at Flow Creative, making web, print and illustrations for animation.
Emily Comfort is a designer and artist living in Brooklyn. She has spent over a decade working in design, most notably as a visual designer for Xbox. Her beautiful collage work, much of which is posted on her website, is stunning and well worth checking out.
8. Anna Parini
An illustrator born in Milan, Anna Parini currently works and lives in Barcelona for clients including The New York Times, The New Yorker, El País, Rolling Stone, The Guardian, Penguin Random House and Save The Children. Her work has been recognised and exhibited by the Society of Illustrators, Communication Arts, American Illustration and Society for News Design.
A recent graduate of Shillington in New York, Gabriella Tato is now working as a designer in the city. Although her primary focus is UI design, she also has a background in UX, front-end development, and journalism. Winner of both AGDA and GDUSA Awards, she’s currently working as a product designer at MoneyLion.
10. Magda Ksiezak
Born in Poland but raised in Australia, Magda Ksiezak is a graphic designer and illustrator based in Melbourne, who also teaches at Shillington. She’s best known for her papercraft wizardry, and she has created intricate paper-based sculptures and animations for clients including Dulux, Perrier, Pizza Hut, Starbucks and The Melbourne Museum.
Anastasiia is a graphic designer with illustration and animation skills, based in Manchester. An AGDA 2018 award winner and Shillington graduate, she's currently working at the Tile Creative design agency whilst continuing to pursue self-initiated projects.
12. Marcea Decker
Marcea Decker has spent the last few years in New York working with small ad agencies, digital media companies, and start-ups. However, the majority of her experience comes from designing within the nonprofit world. She’s also a musician and artist and does an incredible line in hand painting with bleach on T-shirts and other textiles. If you want to learn more from her, she's a teacher at Shillington in New York.
13. Verònica Fuerte
Verònica Fuerte is an ADC Young Guns award-winning designer from Barcelona, Spain. She is the founder of Hey Studio, which focuses on graphic design and illustration and whose clients include Apple, Monocle and Penguin Random House.
14. Jennifer Yoo
Born in Korea, raised in Hawaii and currently living in Brooklyn, Jennifer Yoo graduated last year from Shillington and was last month selected by Jessica Walsh as one of the winners of the TDK Awards 2018. Walsh described Yoo’s portfolio as: “Unexpected, fun and experimental, I love how different each project was. Jennifer's folio is well executed, and she shows off each brand nicely without overdoing it.”
15. Kathleen Crosby
Another recent graduate and TDK Awards 2017 winner, Kathleen Crosby works both as a freelance designer and in-house at UN Women, the organisation for gender equality and the empowerment of women. TDK judge Johan Debit says of her work: “Kathleen shows interesting versatility and bravery that I want to salute. She tackles unusual subjects and her work is both controlled and relevant, with a touch of humour.”
16. Estefi Panizza
Estefi Panizza is a graphic designer from Buenos Aires who’s now living in East London. Not content with getting her first post-graduation job at Design Bridge, she also founded her own studio, Cascabel, which works in the field of music, advertising and cultural programming. She did all that before she even graduated from Shillington in London.
17. Shyama Golden
Shyama (it rhymes with llama, and the Y is silent) Golden is a visual artist currently based in Brooklyn. Oils are her preferred medium, but she also works digitally on the iPad Pro, which allows her to create seamless patterns and looping animations.
18. Olivia Chen
Born in Taiwan, spending most of her adulthood in the United States, Olivia Chen is an art director and graphic designer based in Sydney. Winner of the AGDA 2018 prize for small business branding, she is the founder of Studio Chenchen, a Sydney-based branding design studio that comprises a collaborative network in New York, Hong Kong, Melbourne and Sydney. She also teaches part-time at Shillington in Sydney.
19. Justyna Procak
Shillington graduate and TDK Awards 2018 winner, Justyna Procak is a junior graphic designer at Otherway, a branding agency based next to Hyde Park in London. With a background in sociology (which she calls “her superpower”) and a passion for bringing together images, words and ideas, she specialises in branding, UX and website design.
20. Leila Bartholet
Recent Shillington graduate Leila Bartholet works as a graphic designer for Chandelier, a creative, media, and branded entertainment agency based in New York. She also does freelance work including album designs, brochures, posters, and gifs, and recently worked on a political project for Austin City Limits.
21. Eleanor Hardiman
Eleanor Hardiman is an illustrator and designer from Bristol. With a distinct, modern and clean illustrative style, she has worked on a variety of national and international projects including magazine editorial pieces, book covers, promotional materials, packaging and illustrated windows. A first class graduate of Falmouth University, she has a very promising career ahead of her.
22. Araki Koman
Originally from Paris, Araki Koman has spent the last 12 years travelling the world, has lived in eight different countries and is currently based in Tokyo, a city she's dreamed about experiencing since childhood. A freelance illustrator by trade, Araki's minimalist style features raw lines, organic shapes and a limited colour palette, influenced by slow living, visual anthropology and her multicultural experiences.
Danielle Molyneux is the person behind Dotto, an independent design studio in Manchester specialising in brand and visual identity. Creating often playful, always meaningful work for a diverse range of clients, Dani also occasionally guest lectures and mentors students at Salford University, Manchester School of Art and Shillington. She is also one of the co-founders of Ladies Wine Design in Manchester.
24. Camila Pinheiro
Camila Pinheiro is an illustrator, artist, and mother living in São Paulo, Brasil. She studied fashion and design in São Paulo and worked for Dior and several agencies before opening her own studio. Her influences range from Magritte, Matisse and Mondrian to Alexander Girard. She's just created the illustrations for So Here I Am, a new book by Anna Russell and dedicated collection of seminal speeches by women from around the world.
25. Amy Blackwell
Freelance British illustrator Amy Blackwell creates work that focuses on sassy and strong female personas in a range of styles. Nourished by the creative community on social media, she has over 100,000 followers on Instagram alone – people who clearly love her use of different colours, shapes and patterns, which she draws on her iPad. Amy draws inspiration from the vibrant online dialogues and trending hashtags which break down stigmas and promote Diversity and Inclusion.