Artist Feature - JiaJia Hamner Jun 15 2023

Meet the artists

This month, Advocate Art is highlighting JiaJia Hamner! Starting out as a physicist, she’s had an exciting journey to becoming the great illustrator she is today!

JiaJia was a physicist working in a dark lab doing important but obscure work, until one day, she realized that she was not happy and that she had had enough. So she turned to her first love, art. From there she became a mostly self-taught illustrator. 

However, her interest in nature and the sciences did not diminish as JiaJia loves illustrating projects with a strong focus on the natural world. She also loves working on projects that explore her Asian heritage. Having lived the very first 7 years of her life in China, she is very much inspired by the lives and cultures of her native country.

"My favorite part of illustrating a book is the initial research. I love learning about a subject and getting to know how something works or how a character behaves. If I am given enough time, I love exploring how a subject is connected to the bigger picture. All the relevant information I gather goes into creating details that give my work more depth.”

Her first book project was called ‘The Peculiar Powers of Vegetables and Fruits’. 

“It is a super fun and silly book of poetry aimed to help kids eat more veg and fruit, and even though very little is actually based on science, I remember this project fondly as one of the most enjoyable I have ever worked on.”

Crazy enough, her first project also won 1st place in Story Monsters’ Royal Dragonfly Book Award in the Children’s Poetry Books category.

Since then JiaJia has worked on many exciting projects! When asked about those important projects she says:

"I feel that the most ‘important’ projects are the ones I am currently working on because I try hard to focus on living in the moment and giving my full attention to my present work. My dream project would involve illustrating, and possibly writing, a non-fiction book that aims to help kids explore ‘difficult subjects’ in mathematics and the sciences in such a way as to go beyond memorization of facts and catchphrases. “

It’s great to see JiaJia bringing her passions for science and art together. We at Advocate are here to support her and her passions. 

“Being an independent illustrator, I feel immensely lucky that the agents at Advocate Art reached out to me. Before joining Advocate, I was feeling overwhelmed by advertising and managing clients while working to improve my portfolio. The agents at Advocate have given me the ability to concentrate on what I love doing while increasing my knowledge of the illustration industry and my exposure to new clients.”

We hope to continue alongside JiaJia, helping her grow in her knowledge and reach these goals!

Interested in seeing more? Click HERE to see JiaJia's full portfolio!

Advocate Art illustration agency specializes in art licensing and children’s book illustrations. Based in London, Seville, New York, L.A., and Singapore, we represent leading illustrators who produce children's and decorative work to commission or license.