Jillian Tamaki is an illustrator and cartoonist who grew up in Calgary and who now lives and works out of Brooklyn, NY. She teaches illustration at SVA, and let me just say that those kids are very lucky because she is a fantastic illustrator! I first came across Jillian after I read her graphic novel "Skim," (a collaboration with her cousin Mariko) which is something of a coming-of-age story about outcast private school girl Skim and her first forays into romance and death. The story itself was compelling, but it was really the sketchy and heavily inked drawing style that carried the novel for me - it's expressive but detailed, and has a lovely subtle Japanese influence, especially as applied to the appearance of the protagonist, who truly resembles a classic Japanese heroine.
I was only further impressed when I checked out Jillian's website - her single page illustrations have the same expressive linework as her comics, but with a wonderfully delicate color application that almost seems to mimic an encaustic texture in some places. I also love her references to folk-lore and the way that she combines flora and fauna with human forms in her work. Check out her website or blog for more work, as well as some more great comic-art and advice for art students!- Elizabeth