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Illustrators Switzerland is an online platform that aims to promote illustration in Switzerland and to increase its public visibility. The platform offers a large selection of portfolios by illustrators, ranging from experienced artists to new talents.
This platform is maintained and funded by the Illustrators Switzerland association.

Looking for an illustrator?
Use the search filters to quickly find the suitable illustrator for your needs. Or browse the names to get an overview of the portfolios. For an enquiry or booking, simply contact the respective illustrator directly.

This website contains examples of work, links to illustrators’ homepages, and direct contact information. The association is not an agency and takes no percentage on jobs commissioned.

Active membership is open to professional illustrators based in Switzerland. For detailed information on the admission process and membership, please refer to the association’s bylaws and regulations.

Terms of admission in a nutshell:

1. Applicants must submit the online application form, eight recent, representative works, and a link to their own homepage. At least six of the submitted works must be commissioned works no older than three years.

2. A five-piece jury appointed by the board of directors reviews the applications and decides on the admission of new members. The association reserves the right to reject applications.

3. Admissions are held twice a year in January and July. The application deadlines are 3 January and 3 July.

4. The applicant will be notified within 15 days after the application deadline. Applicants must give an email contact. (Please note that as a volunteer-driven organization, we don’t have the capacity to provide detailed feedback on your application.) Accepted applicants must agree to the association’s bylaws and regulations.

5. Individual members pay CHF 125.– per year (see the regulations for detailed prices). New members receive access to their personal online portfolio after paying the membership dues.

Click here for the application form.
Applications can be made anytime: The next application-round ends on July 3, 2018.

Portfolio maintenance / updates
In order to ensure that the website is up to date, active members are obligated to update their portfolios at least once a year.

Duty of care
The association allows no discriminatory or offensive content on its website, nor any content that may be detrimental to the association. Members shall have the sole liability for the contents of their portfolio The association shall not be held liable for portfolio contents nor for the contents of external links.

Copyright
Unless otherwise noted, members retain the copyright for the contents of their portfolio (texts, designs).
Company names, domain names, product names, brands, and other protected names remain the property of their respective owners, regardless of whether they are designated accordingly.

July 2018
Outside reviewer: Martina Walthert von Völlm + Walthert
Association members: Samuel Jordi, Nicolas Kristen
Board members: Nadja Baltensweiler, Eva Rust

January 2018
Outside reviewer: David Basler from Edition Moderne
Association members: Tom Künzli, Janine Wiget
Board members: Anna Haas, Luigi Olivadoti

July 2017
Outside reviewer: Hans Ten Doornkaat vom Atlantis Verlag
Association members: Anja Denz, Michael Raaflaub
Board members: Anna Haas, Eva Rust

January 2017
Outside reviewer: Peter Kruppa, Art Director von Infel Corporate Media
Association members: Diego Balli und Nadja Baltensweiler
Board members: Corina Vögele und Roger Zürcher

July 2016
Outside reviewer: Bettina Klossner, Art Director von TBWA
Association members: Luigi Olivadoti und Res Zinniker
Board members: Eva Rust und Roger Zürcher

January 2016
Outside reviewer: Christian Haas von der Raffinerie für Gestaltung
Association members: Stephan Schmitz, Uwe Stettler
Board members: Anna Haas, Roger Zürcher

July 2015
Outside reviewer: Simon Kassewalder von Menu Drei
Association members: Patrick Bonato, Philip Buerli
Board members: Eva Rust, Corina Vögele

January 2015
Outside reviewer: Crafft
Association member: Alice Kolb
Board members: Anna Haas, Eva Rust, Roger Zürcher

 

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Hi Balthasar, can you briefly introduce yourself?
My name is Balthasar «Balz» Bosshard, I work as a freelance illustrator. I studied scientific visualization at the Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK). Since getting my BA, I’ve been working as an illustrator in my studio at Lagerplatz in Winterthur. My focus is on designing posters and flyers for various clients.

What does your normal work day look like?
My work day starts in my studio in the morning. During a coffee break in the morning I get to chat with my studio friends. I usually work at the studio all day, often till late at night.

What is this shared studio like?
There are three parties in the studio – Zweihund GmbH, Samuel Jordi, and myself. We share a long space, which we’ve divided with partition walls and doors. So everyone has their own office within the big space.

Tell us a little about the OAS Collective!
The OAS Collective has existed for about a year. It consists of Marco Wyss, Samuel Jordi, and myself. The collective was formed on the Canary Islands, where the three of us went on vacation together. It’s a vacation collective, so to speak. We spent a lot of time painting and drawing, which made us realize that we work well together. Back in Winterthur, we did our first joint project. When the opportunity presents itself and everyone has the time for it, we work on projects together. Apart from that, we’re also good friends.

You design lots of flyers and posters. Your works for Gaswerk and Kraftfeld – two music clubs in Winterthur – are great and very original. How did this collaboration come about?
I started making flyers for Gaswerk a few years ago. The flyers were made around 2012. Since there is a wide distribution of flyers in general, a lot of people see your work. So, people’s interest grew gradually and I started receiving more requests from bands and clubs in Winterthur. Designing flyers and posters has become a regular part of my work, and the one I love most to this day – it’s become my passion and I’m excited about each new job.

Can we talk about your design process? When a new assignment reaches your mailbox, what happens next?
When I’m asked to do a job and a collaboration materializes, I usually start with little sketches of various ideas. I keep developing them until the one idea that seems most feasible emerges. Depending on the job, I might show this process to the client – or not.
When putting an idea into practice, I really dedicate myself to the process until the product is finished. Sometimes that involves overcoming just a few obstacles, sometimes many. It is important to me to really fully delve into the work process (which is a battle sometimes). Sometimes this leads me to change or add something to my initial idea.

Is the process you’re talking about more technical or more conceptual in kind?
Both. At first, it is more conceptual, of course, until I’ve found an idea that I consider good enough or appropriate. Sometimes, the idea emerges after a few sketches or thoughts, sometimes it takes longer. I don’t have a specific formula that I follow when developing an idea. They often come to me spontaneously, and actually rarely at the studio.
The second step is the design process, which I usually start with an idea and a sketch. Realizing the idea and combining words and images often leads to problems or questions that need to be addressed and solved. These problems and questions can change my idea or complement it. I don’t need to have the entire work conceived right from the start. Rather, it emerges through the back-and-forth between light table and computer.

Can you tell us about one of your projects?
Sure, for instance the «Volt Fest» poster for Gaswerk in Winterthur. The assignment was to create a poster for a two-day music event, and it had to contain a note that the Peacocks would play songs from their new album.
I wanted to make a sort of «electro-shock skull,» where the writing emerges from or goes into the skull. So I did that by drawing several color layers, which I combined, superimposed, and edited on the computer. That’s an approach I use a lot.

Do you have a favorite technique?
I translate my pencil sketches with the help of a light table, using Indian ink, quills, and brushes. I usually draw various color separations, which I then scan, before combining and editing them in Photoshop. It often happens that I mix the digital with the analog, so that I usually end up sitting at the computer.

This technique of drawing the individual color separations is ideal for screen-printing the works afterwards. In fact, your posters look as if they were carefully printed by hand. Is that impression wrong?
Being able to screen-print a poster is an absolute highlight for me. But sadly, for financial reasons, that rarely happens with posters for the culture industry.
But I’m also a big fan of Risograph printing. Compared with screen-printing, this printing process is less complex and much cheaper. Nevertheless, it produces great results, I think. Time and budget permitting, I like to print my posters on the Risograph. I usually do it myself. The Volt Fest poster, for instance, I printed myself on the Risograph at Dynamo in Zurich.

What inspires and drives you?
I get inspired by just about anything, especially by other artists, live music, and my environment. I see so many great works, so that gives me a lot motivation to also make progress myself.

The music scene seems to be very important to you. Do you play in a band yourself?
Yes, the music scene is very important to me. Unfortunately, I don’t play in any bands anymore, but I used to play a lot of drums in bands and projects. Now, I just like going to shows often. Since I work for the cultural institutions in Winterthur, I get discounts on cover charges and drinks, so that I can go to a lot of shows. That’s important to me and I think it does have an effect on my ideas for the posters and flyers.

What would your dream assignment be?
My dream assignment… hmmm… That would be a brewery that is also a band at the same time, so I could design everything for them: labels for the beer bottles, t-shirts, CD covers, posters for their gigs and tours…
Or, of course, a concert poster for Primus or the Melvins…

What’s next for you?
The next thing is a trip to the US that I’m planning with a friend. My goal is to document the trip in a sketchbook. If everything works out the way I imagine it right now, it would be great to create a little publication from this sketchbook. But, of course, you never know exactly what’s going to happen…

 

Links:
www.balthasarillustration.ch

Balthasar Bosshard

The interview was conducted by email and during visits to Balz’s studio in Winterthur between May and June 2017.

«Ideas often come to me spontaneously, and actually rarely at the studio.»

Hi Balthasar, can you briefly introduce yourself?
My name is Balthasar «Balz» Bosshard, I work as a freelance illustrator. I studied scientific visualization at the Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK). Since getting my BA, I’ve been working as an illustrator in my studio at Lagerplatz in Winterthur. My focus is on designing posters and flyers for various clients.

What does your normal work day look like?
My work day starts in my studio in the morning. During a coffee break in the morning I get to chat with my studio friends. I usually work at the studio all day, often till late at night.

What is this shared studio like?
There are three parties in the studio – Zweihund GmbH, Samuel Jordi, and myself. We share a long space, which we’ve divided with partition walls and doors. So everyone has their own office within the big space.

Tell us a little about the OAS Collective!
The OAS Collective has existed for about a year. It consists of Marco Wyss, Samuel Jordi, and myself. The collective was formed on the Canary Islands, where the three of us went on vacation together. It’s a vacation collective, so to speak. We spent a lot of time painting and drawing, which made us realize that we work well together. Back in Winterthur, we did our first joint project. When the opportunity presents itself and everyone has the time for it, we work on projects together. Apart from that, we’re also good friends.

You design lots of flyers and posters. Your works for Gaswerk and Kraftfeld – two music clubs in Winterthur – are great and very original. How did this collaboration come about?
I started making flyers for Gaswerk a few years ago. The flyers were made around 2012. Since there is a wide distribution of flyers in general, a lot of people see your work. So, people’s interest grew gradually and I started receiving more requests from bands and clubs in Winterthur. Designing flyers and posters has become a regular part of my work, and the one I love most to this day – it’s become my passion and I’m excited about each new job.

Can we talk about your design process? When a new assignment reaches your mailbox, what happens next?
When I’m asked to do a job and a collaboration materializes, I usually start with little sketches of various ideas. I keep developing them until the one idea that seems most feasible emerges. Depending on the job, I might show this process to the client – or not.
When putting an idea into practice, I really dedicate myself to the process until the product is finished. Sometimes that involves overcoming just a few obstacles, sometimes many. It is important to me to really fully delve into the work process (which is a battle sometimes). Sometimes this leads me to change or add something to my initial idea.

Is the process you’re talking about more technical or more conceptual in kind?
Both. At first, it is more conceptual, of course, until I’ve found an idea that I consider good enough or appropriate. Sometimes, the idea emerges after a few sketches or thoughts, sometimes it takes longer. I don’t have a specific formula that I follow when developing an idea. They often come to me spontaneously, and actually rarely at the studio.
The second step is the design process, which I usually start with an idea and a sketch. Realizing the idea and combining words and images often leads to problems or questions that need to be addressed and solved. These problems and questions can change my idea or complement it. I don’t need to have the entire work conceived right from the start. Rather, it emerges through the back-and-forth between light table and computer.

Can you tell us about one of your projects?
Sure, for instance the «Volt Fest» poster for Gaswerk in Winterthur. The assignment was to create a poster for a two-day music event, and it had to contain a note that the Peacocks would play songs from their new album.
I wanted to make a sort of «electro-shock skull,» where the writing emerges from or goes into the skull. So I did that by drawing several color layers, which I combined, superimposed, and edited on the computer. That’s an approach I use a lot.

Do you have a favorite technique?
I translate my pencil sketches with the help of a light table, using Indian ink, quills, and brushes. I usually draw various color separations, which I then scan, before combining and editing them in Photoshop. It often happens that I mix the digital with the analog, so that I usually end up sitting at the computer.

This technique of drawing the individual color separations is ideal for screen-printing the works afterwards. In fact, your posters look as if they were carefully printed by hand. Is that impression wrong?
Being able to screen-print a poster is an absolute highlight for me. But sadly, for financial reasons, that rarely happens with posters for the culture industry.
But I’m also a big fan of Risograph printing. Compared with screen-printing, this printing process is less complex and much cheaper. Nevertheless, it produces great results, I think. Time and budget permitting, I like to print my posters on the Risograph. I usually do it myself. The Volt Fest poster, for instance, I printed myself on the Risograph at Dynamo in Zurich.

What inspires and drives you?
I get inspired by just about anything, especially by other artists, live music, and my environment. I see so many great works, so that gives me a lot motivation to also make progress myself.

The music scene seems to be very important to you. Do you play in a band yourself?
Yes, the music scene is very important to me. Unfortunately, I don’t play in any bands anymore, but I used to play a lot of drums in bands and projects. Now, I just like going to shows often. Since I work for the cultural institutions in Winterthur, I get discounts on cover charges and drinks, so that I can go to a lot of shows. That’s important to me and I think it does have an effect on my ideas for the posters and flyers.

What would your dream assignment be?
My dream assignment… hmmm… That would be a brewery that is also a band at the same time, so I could design everything for them: labels for the beer bottles, t-shirts, CD covers, posters for their gigs and tours…
Or, of course, a concert poster for Primus or the Melvins…

What’s next for you?
The next thing is a trip to the US that I’m planning with a friend. My goal is to document the trip in a sketchbook. If everything works out the way I imagine it right now, it would be great to create a little publication from this sketchbook. But, of course, you never know exactly what’s going to happen…

 

Links:
www.balthasarillustration.ch

Photo credit: Anna Haas

Photo credit: Anna Haas

Image credit: Balthasar Bosshard

Photo credit: Anna Haas

Photo credit: Anna Haas

Image credit: Balthasar Bosshard

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