AOI Mentorship 2022: Introducing Simo Liu

The 2022 AOI Mentorship scheme is now fully underway! First introduced in 2020 and expanded in 2021, this free program is designed by the AOI to further support and guide under-represented illustrators in an intimate and supporting setting.

LA-based illustrator Simo Liu is one of 17 new mentees selected for this year’s edition, paired with mentor and Agent Matthew Shearer from BA Reps. We learn how her mentorship is going so far and what she’s hoping to achieve in the months ahead.


What does being part of the AOI Mentorship mean to you?

I’m so happy that I’m part of the AOI Mentorship program! It gives me the chance to work with professionals to solve my concerns and help build my career. Also, it allows me to push myself to make some changes at this moment.

After leaving school, for years there weren’t many programs that could offer me this opportunity. Especially, this is for illustrators working in the real world, so this mentorship is very precious for me.

What has the mentorship been like so far?

So far is really great! Since my mentorship started, I’ve had regular meetings with Matthew every two weeks.

He is very helpful. He took a look at my current portfolio and cared about my concerns. My current primary concern is to expand my clients, especially for commercials and advertisements. Based on that, he gave me very constructive suggestions on how to refine my portfolio and explore character style to expand potential clients. We also talked about pricing and negotiating, very practical tips! I feel so lucky that I got the chance to meet Matthew during this mentorship : )

What do you hope to accomplish by the end of the mentorship?

  • To refine my illustration portfolio.
  • To explore animations in my current illustration style.
  • To be more confident in business practice: pricing, negotiations, marketing and self-promotion

We’d like to thank Simo for her time in giving this interview. See more of her work on her website and Instagram.

Keep checking our Mentorship section to meet more 2022 mentees!

Learn more about the AOI Mentorship and our 2022 Mentors.

The AOI Mentorship scheme is one of many benefits offered by us. Find out more about membership today.


25th March 2022
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