Episode 17: Hedof

On Building a Thriving Career Around Your Interests


In this episode, I talk with Dutch illustrator Rick Berkelmans AKA Hedof about his amazing career as a commercial illustrator, how he got to where he is now and what he's learned along the way.

Rick Berkelmans AKA Hedof is an illustrator who has worked with big brands from all over the world on imaginative campaigns and projects. His signature style consists of flat shapes interwoven together to form surreal visual puzzles. His unique ability to translate a mood into distinct visuals has helped Rick grow an impressive list of clients including Nike, Ikea, Samsung, KLM, The Hoxton Hotel, WeTransfer, Google and the Lotte World Mall.

We talk about:

  • how to discover your voice and style as an artist

  • how to build a portfolio around your interests and passions

  • how to reach out to people you want to work with

  • how to use group shows and exhibitions to build up your reputation

  • how to set realistic goals

  • how to embrace constraints and restrictions

  • how to push yourself out of your comfort zone and learn new skills

  • how to deal with the more boring side of freelance work (i.e. administrative details and emails)

  • Rick’s whole process for creating his signature illustration

  • why sketching is so important in Rick's practice and how he approaches sketching

  • Why you need to educate yourself about the business side of illustration/ design as a freelancer

  • some resources (many are free) you can use to learn the basics of business

  • how to balance freelancing and family life


Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning I may get a small commission from purchases made through them (at no additional cost to you). This helps to support the show.