AOI Mentorship Scheme

Illustration (c) Dan Woodger


The 2020 mentorship scheme is underway!  There were a huge number of excellent applications so we are unable to take any more applications this year.  You can read about the successful mentees here.

We are currently looking for mentors for our 2021 scheme.  If you are interested in finding out more please see Info for Potential AOI Mentors 2021.

How does it work?

Mentees will have six sessions (online) with an experienced illustrator member over a 3-6 month period.

Mentees are asked to set up to three goals to achieve during their mentorship. This might be developing a new technique or skills, getting more confident in negotiation, or working in a new area. They don’t have to be world changing – just game changing for you.

There is no financial transaction involved in this scheme. It is about generous support from illustrators to illustrators. We particularly welcome applications from illustrators under-represented in the industry.

Our mentors are:

Willa Gebbie

Willa is a Scottish illustrator based in London. She predominately works with luxury fashion, lifestyle and beauty brands.

Her illustrations have a confident line; blending feminine watercolours with contemporary digital elements.

Willa specialises in providing solutions for retail marketing, PR and experiential events. She has created artwork for global brands such as Chanel, Kate Spade and L’Occitane.


Cat O’Neil

Cat is an illustrator based in Edinburgh. She graduated from ECA in 2011, and has since lived and worked as an illustrator in Hong Kong, London and France.

Clients include The New York Times, The LA Times, Variety, WIRED, The Financial Times, The Economist, Scientific American, Libération, Revue XXI, Time Out HK and more. Awards include Communication Arts Award (2019), the V&A Illustration Awards (2018), and Cheltenham Illustration Awards (2013), along with being shortlisted and receiving recognition from the Association Of Illustrators, Society Of Illustrators and 3×3 Magazine of Contemporary Illustration.

Cat mainly specialises in editorial illustration but has also worked on solo exhibitions of personal work, and a short graphic novel, Returning Home which was funded by Arts Council England.


Laura Hughes 

Laura is an award-winning children’s illustrator. She has created artwork for over 20 picture books including The Bear Who Did by Louise Greig and Daddy’s Sandwich by Pip Jones. In 2018, Laura won the  Oscar’s Book Prize, with author John Dougherty, for their book There’s a Pig Up My Nose, has also been nominated for the Kate Greenaway medal twice and has received the runner-up prize in the Sainsbury’s Book awards.

Laura’s artwork has featured on packaging, stationery, homewares and greetings cards in countries all over the world. Her clients include Anthropologie, Faber&Faber, HarperCollins US, Bloomsbury, DengDeng Baby, Waitrose and American Greetings.

Previous to her career as an illustrator, Laura worked as artwork manager for the Bright Agency where she was responsible for scouting and developing new illustration talent and managing artists’ portfolios.


Dan Woodger 

Dan is a London based illustrator and animator with 8 years experience working in the creative industry. Since graduating from the University of Brighton in 2011, Dan has been busy creating a unique, playful, character based style of work, that has seen him collaborate with some of world biggest brands, including Apple, Google, The New Yorker, Netflix, Samsung & Pepsi.


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