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Closer Than You Think
A lot has changed in the past couple of months, but ...
Haven’t posted in a while. A lot has changed in the past couple of months. Many news to share, many things to talk about, but little or no time. While I plan the rest of the year, say goodbye to a very short summer here in Amsterdam, I wanted to talk about some of the cool things that happened in the last couple of weeks.
For those of you trying to develop an illustration career or who have been building one for a while - you have been asking me about some of the things included below. Let’s go!
The Menu for This Week:
🌳 A Package delivery
🌳 A short Backstory
🌳 A Game to Play
The best kind of mail
This is something I've been waiting very impatiently for a couple of months, and I finally received the mail. So naturally, I rushed to show you!
"Beasts of the Ancient World” is a project I've worked on this year and the previous one, and it's one of those that, even though complicated at times, results in huge satisfaction. So seeing the book in person and how beautiful it is makes me really happy and proud.
I made my first live unboxing video and instantly fell in love with the book. My favorite part of this project was this amazing creative mix between fiction and non-fiction.
In some cases, museum artifacts served as a reference and an anchor point, and in others, I had complete creative freedom when coming up with how the beasts and characters should look, using as a base the descriptions of the author, Marchella Ward, written into short stories.
Another super cool thing was that the team I worked with gave me space to propose different visual solutions when it came to composing the artwork around the text, resulting in every page being different. Even though we had a binding element of decorative borders running around each spread, every story and every character is different and unique. Those ornamental details were another cool feature to work on. For every one of them, I pulled relevant details or symbols from each story to then interlace with motifs of the same origin as each legend.
A fun fact is that during the process of working on the book, I visited the Pergamon Museum in Berlin and, among others, The British Museum in London as a part of my own research. All of those museum visits and the abundant material I collected on each of them were very inspiring as I had a chance to see many of the artifacts and characters that later served me in the creation of the beasts.
Working on this book felt like an opportunity to make myths and legends look really fun and interesting, as they should be! If you'd like to learn more about the book and get a glimpse, check out the video!
A short backstory
CMYK or RGB? How to get my first client? How to find my style? Should I get an agent? - These are in the top 10 most commonly asked questions that I hear. Today I wanted to talk a bit about the last one and share with you a very cool update and announcement.
Getting an agent is something that many independent artists dream about. And it's not surprising. Being a creative freelancer means being a one-person band and doing 100 things all at once.
To tell you a funny story, when I started my career, right after I published my first & very scarce online portfolio, I decided to apply to (very few) agencies. Because how else was I supposed to get my first clients? It's really not easy out there. Back then, I assumed that a representation agency would take on every interested illustrator who had reached out and had shown interest in being represented. Nothing further away from the truth.
Time went by, and slowly but steadily, I continued working on my portfolio, getting more and more clients along the way on my own, growing as an artist, creator, and bussiness woman. The more my portfolio was growing and the more confident I felt as an artist, I began to receive offers of representation. It may come as a surprise to some of you, but they were not always that appealing! The draft agreements I read were sometimes very vague and sometimes really restrictive, in a way that felt almost detrimental to the artist. I also got a chance of having a brief contact with some agents, and on some occasions I noticed we wouldn't be a good match on a personality level, as some seemed very old school. As your agent will be the person to accompany you through every project, that compatibility is something that I don't think should be ignored.
Throughout the years, I started to get familiar with what makes a good agent or a great agent, talking to other artists, looking really closely at those agencies that really do a great job. And also understanding that agents are not only there to get you clients. It’s a two way street, a partnership, a team.
Early this year I decided to give another thought to the idea of representation, as I felt that there were a few converging points in my career that could turn this into a great opportunity, so I started talking with a few. In July this year, Closer & Closer reached out to me.
I was really excited about the new perspectives this partnership might bring. I'm sure many of you're familiar with the awesome work they've been doing and the artists they represent, but in short and in their words, “Closer & Closer represent artists from around the world and connect them with world-class clients, to do what they do best - create unforgettable visual experiences through illustration, animation and design”.
And, of course, I said yes. I can't tell you guys how excited I am about this new opportunity! I met the C&C team, and they're amazing and so are the few artists from the roster I met so far.
I can’t wait to bring you all along for this journey!
Islets - The Little Mouse Warrior
Even though I'm not the biggest fan of platform games (very tired of Limbo remakes!) you know that I'm gonna be playing a game whenever the graphics are beautiful! And Islets really is amazing in that aspect.
In short, the main character Iko is a mouse warrior on a mission to reconnect floating islands, and to fix a broken world. He's got to fulfill his task while battling some tough foes. Islets is this surprisingly cool game where you make friends while piecing the world back together.
The more islands you reunite and the more buddies you make, the more of this world opens up for Iko to explore.
Now, for me, Islets wasn't easy at all. My clumsy Xbox fingers lacked speed and reflex, even though I set the game up on an easy level (not ashamed at all, it was still hard!). But it was totally worth it, as the aesthetics, music, and overall vibe of the game really made it a fun experience and a pleasure to be part of.
Let me know if you've played it or if you have any game recs for us all below!
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