Sterling Hundley’s career as an illustrator got off to a quick start. While still a student at Virginia Commonwealth University, his work was chosen for the Society of Illustrators Student Scolarship Competition and the Society’s Illustrators Annual, and appeared in CMYK and Step by Step Magazine.
He continues to garner awards and notice from the Society of Illustrators, The Illustrators Club, The LA Society of Illustrators, Communication Arts, Print Magazine and others.
His clients include The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Rolling Stone, GQ, The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Harper Collins and Putnam. He is represented by Richard Solomon (which says a fair bit in itself).
Hundley’s illustrations demonstrate a bold sense of design and are enlivened with imaginative variations of patterns and textures. His color palette tends to be muted, allowing the textures to assume part of the role normally assigned to color.
In his posters and book covers he often makes the title and other text an integral part of the illustration; and hand lettered text is used like a texture in some of his works (an interesting way to think of the word “texture”) .
His figures and faces are sometimes exaggerated, sometimes straightforwardly drawn and often a combination of both approaches. He also manages to combine abstracted shapes and pure design elements with more directly representational imagery. The result is a mixture of graphic elements, drawing and painting that gives the eye lots of variety within a coherent whole, like a nicely rounded meal.
Eschewing the usual categories into which artists separate their work when presenting it, Hundley interestingly divides his online portfolio into two sections titled “smart” and “pretty”.
His web site seems to be incomplete, as the “For Sale” and “Journal” sections still promise “Coming Soon”. Although, I’m not sure what “Journal” will be, as the “News” section is already in blog format. Unfortunately the blog as presented on the site is confined to scrolling within a limited-height frame, for reasons that are lost on me. You can view the blog without the frame here. You can also find Hundley posting, blog-style, to Drawger. You will find additional images on the blog and Drawger posts that are not in his online portfolio.
He apparently works in acrylic and oil, sometimes with digital additions.
I’m particularly fond of his intriguing portraits of musicians like Carlos Santana (above), Bob Dylan and Gerry Garcia.