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Interview with Vivienne Flesher

Interview with Vivienne Flesher

Penelope Dullaghan

How did you get started in the illustration field?

Upon graduating I didn’t think my portfolio was quite ready so while I continued to work on it I freelanced doing mechanicals for Harpers-the literary magazine and SWANK-the porno magazine. One day, I needed to have the editor of SWANK sign off on a layout. His office door was closed and he didn’t respond when I knocked. I called him from my desk phone and he asked me to return to his door. He opened it only a crack and pulled me inside. The room was dark, the curtains drawn, all the furniture had been pushed aside the air was thick and warm and there was a naked woman standing in the middle of the room. The editor introduced us and oddly enough we shook hands. Mid-handshake I wondered if her hands were all that clean…..Later that night I decided my portfolio was suddenly plenty ready. I continued working for Harpers and quit SWANK.


How did you find your style? Has it changed since you started?

I started drawing with pastels in life drawing class at Parsons and just continued. Recently I’ve been changing the way I do some assignments.

What is your process when working with clients? Can you run us through a typical job? What is your creative process?

Every job is a little different. Some clients are able to give me tremendous freedom and others have constraints placed on them which get passed to me. Illustration is a collaboration and we work it out.

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