Uplifting illustrations by Ben Nickless recognise the absurdity of everyday life

When everything around you seems overwhelming, from the news to our constantly rotating social media feeds, there's no better comfort than some bright, bold and uplifting artwork.

Take Ben Nickless's illustrations, for example. Described by the artist as "recognising the stupidity and naivety of ourselves and how we act", they are guaranteed to make you smile.

Originally from a small town in Shropshire, Ben moved to Liverpool to study Illustration and Graphics at The Liverpool School of Art & Design, before basing himself in Birmingham as a freelance Illustrator & Graphic Artist.

Speaking of his inspiration, Ben said: "My work is flat but playful and quite naive. I like using bold colours and to feature a fair few stylish characters. I also like the crossover between analogue and digital, which allows me to continue to feel like I’m still using my hands in some capacity. It always stems from a good ol’ pencil drawing.

"I like to start a project by sitting down with the brief, an average granule coffee and a highlighter pen. Then I’d knock out a few thumbnails in a sketchbook or random sheets of paper. As for self-initiated stuff, a lot of my ideas can come at the most random times and places.

"My inspiration comes from simply what goes on in my daily life. The events that can happen and who I manage to meet. Whether that be going out with friends or cycling on my single speeder. It can be a huge influence which may spark a few new ideas. It’s my daily life. Even if I’m not drawing, I’m constantly thinking, looking for ideas, having a conversation about it.

"Within my work, I hope people can just be uplifted. Recognising the stupidity and naivety of ourselves and how we act. Illustrators are not important, but making everything seem more colourful rather than dull is."

Discover more at bennickless.com.


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