NOIS presents The Selfie Show


Professional illustrators tell stories — on demand, on deadline, and usually to someone else’s specifications.
But once a year, members of the Northern Ohio Illustrators Society stretch out a little to make art for themselves and for the public to enjoy. The Selfie Show runs Sept. 11 through Aug. 4 at The Art Gallery in Willoughby. Some 30 illustrators will show new work that plays on the theme of the “selfie,” directly and implicitly.

“The Annual NOIS shows are an opportunity for our commercial art-oriented members to create something more personal,” said NOIS president Ron Hill. “They are assigned a theme, and then they tell that story in their unique visual voice. I would expect we may see self-portraits, story, humorous pieces and a general exploration of the selfie phenomenon in our social media culture.”

The show is a long tradition for NOIS, the only one of Cleveland’s visual art organizations that focuses specifically on supporting and promoting illustration.


“Illustration is not fine art, and it is not graphic design. It uses the art skills of fine art and the business model of graphic design,” said Hill, who draws editorial cartoons for suburban weeklies and has illustrated the series of books called The Armchair Theologian. “But it is, to me, creating an image that tells a story. The illustrator has to understand that story and bring their own style or impact to the image.”

Nancy Lick, who has served on the NOIS board since its inception in 1996, said NOIS exists today for the same reasons it was started 19 years ago: to create a community for illustrators as they tried to build careers making art for advertising, editorial content, character design, and books.

“In the early years of NOIS, we communicated with postcards and personal phone calls to members about events,” Lick said. “Now our website and our Facebook page has made us more visible in the community. As a result, our members often share opportunities they have heard about with other illustrators, or post professional concerns. I have always been impressed that in a competitive business, illustrators in Cleveland are so willing to help each other.”

Northern Ohio Illustrators Society: The Selfie Show: Sept. 11 – Aug. 4

Opening Reception: 6-9 pm Friday, September 11
The Art Gallery

4134 Erie Street,

Willoughby, Ohio 44094

Northern Ohio Illustrators Society