Milan Topalovic biography
Following a Visual Arts foundation course where I developed my portraiture, I became more interested in children’s picture books and this became my specialism during my degree. I graduated in Illustration at Birmingham City University in 2011 and I am now an independent Illustrator, undertaking commissions in portraiture, children’s illustration and public art.
I have won several awards across various disciplines, including an Emerging Talent commendation from one of my favourite illustrators Shaun Tan, at the Cheltenham Illustration Awards 2011. My work was featured in the prestigious Association of Illustrators ‘Best of British Illustration 2012’ Publication and was also the winner of a Ladyhawke Portrait Competition. I have been Artist of the Month in many small gallery spaces in England and have sold my greeting card ranges at various Christmas Fairs, notably Waterhall Birmingham and New Art Gallery, Walsall.
I have been a volunteer at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts since 2014 as I became more interested in workshops and educating in the arts. I was greatly involved in The Big Hoot 2015, illustrating the official Trail Maps for the Big Hoot and Little Hoot education program and painting two giant owls, one of which was the culmination of creative workshops I led with infant and adult community groups in Sheldon, Birmingham. I was also invited to present talks at Birmingham City University, discussing my career to date and giving advice to Illustration students. I find teaching and working in arts education inspires my own practice which continues to evolve as I always strive to bring new approaches into my creative process.
Big Hoot participant
We had the pleasure of working with Milan on the Big Hoot event. Milan’s workshops were excellent he is able to work with and relate to people of all ages. The relaxed atmosphere of the workshops allowed for free flowing creativity. Milan encouraged and inspired our participants and helped them to sharped skills they already have and develop new skills along the way