AOI Mentorship 2022: Introducing Rosalie Smith

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.

UK-based illustrator Rosalie Smith is one of 18 new mentees selected for this year’s edition, paired with mentor and Illustrator Laura Barrett. 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?

Being accepted onto the mentorship scheme has boosted my confidence in my work and reminded me that it’s always worth applying for different opportunities. The chance to get one-to-one advice makes me feel far more positive about launching my illustration career with the knowledge and support I have got from my mentor, Laura Barrett.

What has the mentorship been like so far?

I have so far met with Laura a couple of times, and it has been friendly and supportive. We’ve discussed my work and my interest in publishing, with Laura suggesting other areas of illustration that might be suited to my work.

Laura has begun setting me briefs for small projects, enabling me to get used to working in a professional and commercial way and to build on my portfolio.

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

I’d like to broaden my portfolio with a variety of projects that demonstrate my versatility, as well as build a professional and productive working routine.

I’m not very good at self-promotion, so with Laura’s help I hope to create a plan for promoting my work with a view to approaching prospective clients and become confident in negotiating rates and contracts.


We’d like to thank Rosalie 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.


4th April 2022
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