This week I would like to introduce Omaira Vaquero, a young and talented illustrator I had the pleasure to meet during her stay in London. I had the opportunity to ask her a few questions about her works and her passion for Illustration.
How did you first get into illustration?
I´ve always liked drawing and painting, well, Art and culture in general: I love Art, literature, theatre and cinema. When I was a child I used to be an avid reader and I watched a lot of films, all these stories taught me something, it contributed to my education and it made me develop my opinions. Illustrating a book is to be part of a story; you make it yours when you give your particular vision of this story.
How has art impacted your life?
Years ago I realized that I wanted to make Art part of my life, it became like an evidence, I felt a necessity of expression and creation. I try to follow my impulsions when it comes to creating things; it´s not only drawings, it´s sculptures, clothes, necklaces, books…
How did you become an illustrator?
Well, I studied Psychology at first, and I was very sure that I wanted to be a Psychologist, but when I finished my degree and I began to work in different things I realized that I really have the need of doing something creative and after several years trying to find a good job which became really complicated with the economic crisis, I made the decision to study Illustration.
I moved to Coruña and I studied for two years at the Pablo Picasso School of Arts and Design. There I learned the importance of the practice, self-teaching and the importance of knowing what my strengths are and how to use them.
Do you have a specific 'style'?
I think I have a style, but it is not on purpose, it´s just my way of doing things. I don´t like very complicated drawings, I like to keep things simple, clear. I like to draw faces, that´s what I use to do when I doodle.
How does your design process work, where do you start?
I always start with the concepts or ideas that I want to transmit. This is the most complicated part of the creation and it can take a long time before I get a clear image of the idea I want to convey on paper.
Are you 100% digital or is there paper involved?
I prefer the traditional way to work, I like to feel the materials and work with my hands. But I also use the computer to finish the image, it makes things easier.
What is the most interesting project you have done so far?
The project that I liked most is the project that I had to do at the end of my Illustration Studies, the Final Project. It was the making of more than ten Illustrations about the tale “The Wild Swans” by Hans Christian Andersen. It was a very personal project, where I made all the illustrations and a miniature of the book, so I had to design and made a lot of decisions about the book itself. The result was a mixture between an illustrated book and a book art object. I would like to publish it one day.
Are there illustrators that really inspire you?
There are a lot of them! I like some classics illustrators like Quentin Blake or Edward Gorey. They are timeless. But I admire some new ones too: Ana Juan and Violeta Lópiz, both Spanish like me. Another one I really like is Shaun Tan, an Australian children illustrator with a unique style.
What are your plans ?
I´ve graduated from my Illustrating degree last summer (2015) so this year my goal is to start my illustrator career, get new projects and acquire experience.
If you like her style and would like to contact her, visit her website.