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Illustration And Design Resources

Art materials, essential software to must-have books

These resources are the tools, pieces of software and books that Haydn uses to create and aid his illustration and design work. These resources are items which Haydn personally uses, some being used daily and others weekly / monthly. Haydn only lists the tools that he is happy to use himself, which he believes can boost your artistic, professional and personal journey. He only recommends items that can benefit you.

Not all of these resources below are art tools, as he has included non-artistic books and pieces of marketing software. As a note, some of these resources listed below are affiliate links, which means Haydn will receive a small commission if you decide to purchase from these links. This will be at no extra cost to you. Enjoy!

Illustration And Design Resources & Tools

Hardware & Software

Adobe Creative Suite

Adobe has been around since 1982, and the Adobe Creative Suite has all the tools you need to be a successful illustrator, designer or creative. From Adobe Indesign, Adobe Illustrator, to Haydn’s favourite of Adobe Photoshop, maximise your creativity with this Suite. The Suite is quite expensive, as there are other, cheaper alternatives, but I highly recommend Adobe to anyone in the creative industry.

Find out more – Adobe Creative Suite


Figma Logo

Another great UX / UI designers dream is Figma. Much the same as Sketch, this free-to-use programme has advanced prototyping for your projects, simple to use dashboards and effective workspaces for teams. It’s recently (September 2022) been bought out by Adobe, so it will be an interesting time for Figma to see what happens next.

Visit Figma

Sketch App

The Sketch app is a web designer’s dream, as it’s such a powerful piece of software. If you find yourself working on digital designs and website design often, Sketch app by Bohemian Coding is for you.

Visit Sketch

Apple iMac

Apple iMac

I use an Apple iMac for everyday activities, from running Adobe Photoshop to edit one of my illustrations, sending emails to checking social media. This piece of hardware certainly isn’t required (none of these resources are necessarily), but it’s a great piece of kit. Most of the creative industry use Apple, so if you can gather some sort of understanding of how to use an Apple, that will certainly help. Like most of Apple’s products, they certainly aren’t cheap!

Discover the Apple iMac


Wordpress logo

Haydn’s website is powered by WordPress. It’s a brilliant content management system, which has been around for years. Haydn highly recommends this easy to use platform to promote your content.

Power your website with WordPress


Mailchimp logo

Mailchimp gives you the power to send newsletters, direct mail to automated emails to your audience, straight to their inbox! They are the main say in email marketing, and offer a free account too.

Find out all about Mailchimp

Colour and Light by James Gurney

Colour And Light by James Gurney

If you’re a keen painter, illustrator or drawer, this book is for you! Learn about colour in a way you have never learnt before. It’s a brilliant book that Haydn loves refer-ring back to, and is not just for realist painters either!

Read Colour and Light by James Gurney

Thinking With Type by Ellen Lupton

Thinking with Type book

Using typography isn’t easy, and takes practice to use it correctly. However this book by Ellen Lupton breaks down how to use type correctly, mistakes to avoid, and will become one of your favourites on your bookshelf.

Discover Thinking With Type by Ellen Lupton

Winsor & Newton Gouache Paints

Winsor & Newton gouache paintings

Haydn’s illustration style is mainly produced with gouache, and these paints are mostly used for Haydn’s illustrative projects. Winsor & Newton sell premium, durable and dependable products. Haydn recommends these to help your painting’s sparkle.

Paint with Winsor & Newton Gouache Paints

The Drawing Database

The Drawing Database

The Drawing Database is a great YouTube channel, helping you with drawing and improving your own art. Hosted mostly by Marc Leone, I wouldn’t recommend another YouTube channel to help you. One of my favourite videos is this one, about ellipses, and this one about vertical and horizontal lines.

Watch – The Drawing Database

Royal and Langnickel Brush Set

Paintbrush paint set

Haydn brought this gouache brush set a number of years ago, and is still going strong today! Using them with gouache and watercolour mainly to form his illustrations, this brush set can also be used with acrylic too – perfect for any fine artist.

Find out – Royal and Langnickel Brush Set


Proko YouTube Channel

If you want to improve your drawing with things like heads, hands, to artist interviews, a great place to start would be Proko. A very popular artist and teacher, with their own podcast with Marshall Vandruff, check out Proko’s YouTube channel to propel your art to the next level.

Watch – Proko