As a child
I grew up in a small town called Maldon. Maldon is situated on a very muddy river called Blackwater. I spent practically all of my childhood playing and watching cricket. I also did a little sailing on the Blackwater, always keeping an eye out for the odd smuggler or angry Viking. I remember reading lots of great books as a child, but my favourite was The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis.
As an adult
The lesson I enjoyed most at school was art. After leaving school I studied art for a further year at an art college in Colchester. I was then given the opportunity to study illustration at Loughborough University. The course was based around drawing and the importance of finding your own visual language. It was on the course that I first started working in collage. I really enjoyed the idea of collecting bits of paper and then turning them into images. The only catch is that due to my untidiness I can't always find those special bits of paper.
As an artist
After graduating it took me a long time to get anywhere with my illustration and The Museum Book was my first non-fiction book. After receiving Jan Mark's story I was so excited; ideas and imagery just leaped out of the pages. When the book was almost finished, the author tragically died. I wish that she could've seen the book finished and that I could've said thank you for writing what I believe was an illustrator's dream.
Things you didn't know about Richard Holland
- My favourite food is chocolate.
- My football team is "Le Arsenal".
- My favourite city is Paris.
- I am very, very untidy.
- My cat is a borderline schizophrenic.
- Every year I try to grow the world's tallest sunflower ... and fail.
- My favourite children's character is Mr Benn.
- I drink way too many cups of strong coffee.
- I dislike beetles. Even more so when they fly.
- I'm allergic to ... washing up and tiding my desk!