How Jennie turned her love for doodling into an illustration career

Jennie Bentley

Illustration is a great way to grab attention. Meet Jennie Bentley who realised her passion area part-way through study.

Jennie Bentley tentatively dipped her toes into the design world and is now an award-winning graduate. Having completed her Bachelor of Communication Design she shares with us her top tip to finding your own design style.

Tell us about why you enjoy drawing.

As I was when a child, and now as an adult, there's something about creating something visually that allows you to put an idea or thought into digital reality – it sparks something in me, it’s a way to help make sense of the world, and I love that I can now do this professionally.

Why did you choose to study Graphic Design?

Strangely, the way I realised I loved Graphic Design was when I was halfway through my Diploma of Journalism at a different university. One of our tasks was to create an infographic and I ended up sitting glued in my seat creating it and fell in love. After I finished it, I asked my teacher what it was I was doing, and she said it was graphic design. I quit my Diploma and applied for the Diploma of Graphic Design at Billy Blue College of Design and the rest is history.

What were some of the stand outs of your study experience?

Studying was one of the greatest things to give me the tools and knowledge to produce what I wanted to produce, to learn, and overall to grow my own inner confidence.

I have been so fortunate to have the most incredible teachers throughout my journey - those who have helped me bring an idea to life and taught me the tools needed to achieve that.

Jeremy Lord, who was my illustration teacher on campus helped me realise that illustration was my specialty. Max Baron and Tom Wood were my online lecturers who had such patience teaching me Autodesk Maya - where you can create professional 3D animations.

I studied online and on campus and I can say that the experience wasn’t made by the environment, but because of these teachers I had.

Can you tell us about a design project you’ve worked on recently?

Each subject I have undertaken, I have had to learn new techniques or technologies which have pushed me further out of my comfort zone, and I am so grateful for that. I would have to perhaps call out one of my favourite, and recent projects which was for my Major Project subject; "WE MAKE SENSE WHEN WE'RE TOGETHER".


This was a new realm for me jumping into Adobe Premier too, and also stepping outside of myself and having to enlist others to be my actors/actresses, borrowing cameras, learning about shooting, tying in audio and more.

This project in particular was learning the technique of sensory experiences, which is something I hadn't touched on previously. It was a lot of sleepless nights, but absolutely worth it in the end.

What achievements are you most proud of?

I recently won a Gold for my work ‘#NoComment’ in the Indigo International Design Awards 2023. The brief was to design a poster addressing a social impact issue. I literally cried when I received the news.


Indigo Awards Gold Winner 2022 - Student Poster and Brochure Design for Social Change

Last year I won a few merits and finalist awards in AGDA Design Awards too, and if I could go back and tell little Jennie who used to look at those winners as the coolest people ever, she would be so proud to see where she ends up.


AGDA Student Design Awards Finalist 2022 – Student Digital

AGDA Student Design Awards Finalist 2022

AGDA Student Design Awards Finalist 2022 – Student Digital

Every assignment is a personal achievement because I put my heart and soul 110% into my work and when I see how it comes out, it just makes me realise how far I've come and how grateful I am for everything that has happened in my life to allow me to create a piece I am proud of.

How did you find your internship experience?

For my work experience subject, I undertook an internship at one of my dream intern places Soft Launch & Georgia Draws A House. My wonderful illustration skills played a huge hand in securing this and I learned so many invaluable skills from the job - especially through working with such a powerhouse woman, Georgia.

More recently I’ve been working as a Junior Content Creator for two and a half years at Bounce Creative, which thrusted me into the real world filled with live briefs, clients, fast-paced work and using all my multi-talents – both while studying my Bachelor of Communication Design.

Jennie’s top tip to finding your own design style and specialty

Only compare yourself to who you were yesterday. I continuously have to remind myself that when I see other people's work in the real world or even students in my class. Like 'wow they are so good, that was so good, ugh!' but then I remember that someone's 100th step is not the same as my 15th step. The field of design is so subjective and there isn't anyone else with your experiences and thought processes so use that to your advantage when designing a piece of work.

To see more of Jennie’s work click here.

Check our Graphic & Communication Design Courses
Cookies help us improve your website experience.
By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies.