About

I'm a self taught artist and illustrator based in Rochdale, Manchester in the UK. Here's the story behind my art and what inspires me to create

"There's so much detail everywhere, I can't help myself but capture it in drawings..."

Drawing has always been part of my life. It’s always something I’ve just done, like a bi-product of my existence. It’s very much a personal streak, and was something I kept to myself for long enough.

I’m still trying to figure out exactly why I draw the way I do. I haven’t been taught to do it like that. It just sort of is. I think maybe I have some weird attraction to detail. There’s so much detail everywhere, I can’t help myself but capture it in my drawings.

When I sell a piece of art, or receive positive feedback about something I’ve made, I get the most wonderful feeling. I suppose it’s like somebody complimenting you on your hair or eyes. My art is a product of my self, it’s really personal, so anything positivity that it creates will always give me the warm fuzzies.

Who am I?

My name is Victoria Whitaker. I’m based in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, but originally grew up in Calderdale, West Yorkshire. Doodlher is my art alias. It’s a combination of “doodle” and “her”. I came up with the name waking up from my sleep at 3am one morning in late 2018.

I’ve never received any formal art training. I almost chose Fine Art as a university course, but opted for studying French. I was worried that turning my natural love for drawing into an academic pursuit could threaten its integrity. I didn’t want it to become a chore, and I wanted to keep it on my terms. Instead, I did my French degree, and enjoyed art on the side.

Me doodling a gallery on my Dad's workshop ceiling, aged 4.

Style

The key feature in all my compositions is black pen illustration. Once upon a time my detailed drawings would sit on their white paper backgrounds, but more recently they almost always include a flat colour background or collage of flat colours from a similar palette.

I enjoy how the contrasting combination of detailed pen work and solid colour really makes the black and white details jump off the page. Without the colour, it would simply be a black sketch, but with the colour, the white is no longer just the surface of the drawing, but an important layer in the image too.

Inspiration

It’s difficult to pinpoint a specific source of inspiration for my work. My subject preferences definitely stem from a combination of all my life’s experiences and interests.

I’m quiet by nature. I enjoy observing, listening, and learning – I’m basically a human sponge. I’m very empathetic – it doesn’t take much for me to imagine being in someone else’s shoes (this is why I don’t watch horror!). I love history – the past might be behind us but it’s how we got here, so it’s good to appreciate it.

I have a thing about drawing hands. They’re so incredibly complex and interesting. They’re also my primary tool and the means for me to get what’s in my head out onto paper, so really I have a lot of respect for them.

Large Projects

I have been commissioned a number of times to design and create mural art, both indoors and outdoors. Despite their size, these murals, like my paper size artwork, all share black pen as their common feature.

Click here to explore my mural work

Curate your Doodlher collection

Browse current favourites in my shop

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