Tom Cole: Space Race

Work / Publication

Introducing…Tom Cole and his mission to illustrate the most famous race in history…

Space is a theme that’s been knocked about in the art and design world for a few years now, popping up everywhere in the form of triangle-riddled, photoshopped images potentially with a few deer heads thrown in for good measure. How refreshing then to see someone actually do space justice by taking an enormous amount of time to create a beautiful publication informing us mere viewers about the ins and outs of the notorious US vs Soviet Union Space Race. Tom Cole has created a publication synonymous with the rest of his work while still feeling fresh and informative and so we couldn’t wait to grill him about it…

Where do you work?

I work from home on my illustration work and in studios on different animation jobs. Im currently working at Blink in Soho on an animated music video. It’s nice to be around other humans after years of working from home. Me and a group of fellow illustrators/animators are in the very exciting process of hunting down a studio space – hopefully I’ll be settled in by Christmas.

How does your working day start?

Porridge — two sachets of Quaker Oats.

How do you work and how has it changed?

I work using a selection of materials, a light box, scanner and some Photoshop to bring layers of colour together and eventually create an image. I tend to work with print in mind. I have noticed that I’ve become a lot quicker at making my work since leaving university and a lot more organised.

When I started working, I’d be up all night on jobs and relegated to my room for weeks labouring over things that I could have done more simply. Now I work digitally on quick turnover jobs and hand rendered on longer open jobs, it makes the whole process manageable and less stressful.

Where would we find you when you’re not at work?

I’ve just started climbing at the local centre in Stoke Newington. I’m not very good at all but its nice to have something different breaking up the week.

Would you intern for yourself?

Definitely. Knowing me, I’d spend most of the time worrying that everything was ok for the intern and that they were enjoying themselves.


Tom Cole’s desk!


Tom Cole: Space Race


Tom Cole: Space Race


Tom Cole: Space Race


Tom Cole: Space Race


Tom Cole: Space Race