My name is Astrid Halsema, born and raised in Wijk bj Duurstede.
My mother wrote the following from my childhood; "Drawing is your favorite hobby, you started it when you were 2.5 years old and right early in the morning the colors and paper are ready", and it has always been that way.
It is not surprising that I have continued to draw because it is in my blood. My father has been a medical illustrator at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Utrecht and has therefore mainly studied the interior of animals. My mother has made many oil paintings with different subjects but mainly from famous places in Wijk bij Duurstede.
My parents have also taught me the love and attention to nature and encouraged me to do what I was good at and enjoyed. For a nature lover like me, the area here is beautiful. The views over the river Lek, where different species of birds reside and the orchards with the blossoms in spring, the many castles and farms around here. Of course with the contours of the Utrechtse Heuvelrug in the background.I also like to be in the Veluwe where an uncle and aunt of mine live.
I followed my education at the Graphic Lyceum in Utrecht. The training that I followed to become a reproduction / advertising artist took 4 years. After doing various activities for a number of years, I came into contact with Ron Stolk during an exhibition of my illustrations, at that time still a Veterinary Medicine student and later also his father.Many plans have grown out of this contact and, with great enthusiasm and dedication, the company "Animal Prints" was eventually created.
As the name suggests, I can fully enjoy illustrating animals within Animal Prints.Of the illustrations, a number of which have been designed by my sister Suzanne, many have been used in recent years as designs for t-shirts, sweaters, mugs, glasses, food bowls and many other products, such as on this website. comes forward.Whereas in the beginning the sale of these products was mainly through the pet shops, garden centers and trade fairs, this has changed enormously in recent years due to the rapid development of the digital world and more and more transactions are going through the webshop, where consumers are very happy. find its way.
At Animal Prints, I mainly design illustrations of pets, in which I am particularly interested in those animals where I can show the different fur structures and colors. If the subject lends itself to that, casualness and playfulness are something that I would like to express in my drawings. When making an illustration, I use multiple materials such as pencil, contour chalk and watercolor / poster paint so that different effects can be achieved. Usually I use photographs and an archive of sketches, but as an illustrator you have the freedom to adjust your illustration as you want it. A different coat color, a different attitude or expression, everything is possible ...
I myself am the proud owner of a Boomer dog named Donja. She is a true everyone's friend and very curious by nature. I regularly go out with her. She is a great source of inspiration for me.