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Interviewing illustrator: Fernanda Soriano

May I introduce you to Fernanda Soriano, ilustrator and graphic designer, who is currently studying her Masters Degree in History of Art. You can find Fernanda on Instagram with her pseudonym: Snailey Pie. 

[Para la versión en Español de ésta entrevista da click aquí.]

1. LuceBuona: Thank you Fernanda for taking the time to answer these questions for us. Can you tell us about your style? Which series or comics inspire you?
Fernanda: Well, originally my style wasn't taken from any series or program, it just started drawing simple characters in my middle-high school notebooks. I remember that all of them were drawn with circles and cylinders as a body, and their faces had eyes in the shape of a "9" and the nose with a shape of a "c".
For some time I forgot about drawing characters, and then by high school, I  restarted my drawing on notebooks while trying to redesign the style. Also, my admiration for American style cartoons returned, I would really pay attention to the details in the design, the creativity, and mostly, I would pay close attention to the design and creativity details and above all, I would try exaggerating physical features and anatomy. The author/artist that first inspired me was Jhonnen Vázquez; through his comics and series.
"Blue" por  Fernanda Soriano en L-vi.com
 "Blue"

 2. LuceBuona: Among her current projects, Fer is working on a research about the publicity in fashion magazines and women's image, which I find to be very interesting and also very relevant for our society that is constantly exposed to publicity.  What lead you to choose this subject of study? 

Fer: I always thought it was interesting to find out the reasons behind the structure of an advertising image. We see them every day through different outlets, we can watch it from our tv while seating on your sofa, through a magazine, cellphone, out in the streets, or even on a "mupy", on billboards and signs. I always felt curious to find out why certain phenomena took place, most specifically in those related to women's fashion. The paradigm has shifted and transformed through time, and now new stereotypes have been incorporated. But the most interesting is to find out the reasons - in the social, cultural and language structures- of why this is happening, and the trends or influences that move this phenomenon. Publicity has always kept a reason, which is selling. We would have to find out why certain campaigns are built in certain ways, depending on their target audience.
"Chihua Glam" by Fernanda Soriano at L-vi.com
"Chihua Glam

3. LuceBuona: Going back to the matters of image and personal style, is there any person, or character who you admire for her/his creativity, authenticity  and wit while dressing? 

Fer: I don't believe there is a person of fiction character. I dress like any other average person, ad I like to use a couple of garments in fashion while trying to combine them with something casual - but I would still have to do some research and verify this is correct-. Something that I really like is to dye my hair in fantasy shades. I have dyed my hair for 9 consecutive years. There is no particular inspiration or model that I intentionally follow, but I do think is funny to mention that a lot of people have told me before that I look like Ramona Flowers, from Scott Pilgrim vs the world comic, since she also dyes her hair, and there were other coincidences on her image, so people may think I follow her style.
"Bright Girl"
4. LuceBuona: This space was originally created as a fashion blog, and then as time went by, the contents have evolved, getting closer to creativity and expression, through the personal image, or art, so there is a good chance that among our audience we can find those who are considering joining the world of creativity, as an illustrator, what advice can you give us to all of the ones that admire this task, but still haven't gone for it?


Fer:  The main part is taking the steps to let yourself be known. I'll tell you about my experience: for many years I would draw on my notebooks and then on my computer, and I didn't think it would be necessary for other people to see it - mainly because of me being ashamed- but I met other friends who also like to illustrate, and I noticed that the feedback among people who do illustrations was good. A friend who is really into this talked me into sharing my work through an online platform, and that is how I started to publicize my work.
That was a step to open up publicly, and what I learned through the years while I practiced my drawing and style, is that you should not fear what people may think. Opinions come in all sorts, and from different people, sometimes the opinions are constructive, other times are just to bother you and sometimes it's hard to excel. In my case, it took me 5 years in that platform to get more than 10 likes or so. I was a bit discouraged, but I realized that I was in a place where you have to pay to get more features on your account and be able to stand out, or that you have to draw a lot of fan art, do drawing exchanges, accepting commissions and so on, so I decided to get everywhere. It is just a matter of not remaining stagnant, and not committing to a specific idea or place.
Before that, I had basically convinced myself that my work had nothing to stand out, or that it was below many other artists, but that idea took a spin when my thesis counselors invited me to participate in an event called "Behance portfolio reviews" organized by the Habitat Faculty of UASLP. I created an account on Behance, with a portfolio including my illustrations, though I never had any work experience in that area. I got all sorts of critics, and I also realized that there are all sorts of tastes and people who could like your work. After that, I started to meet more illustrators and people who contacted me to participate in projects.
"Be something"


Important tips: never let yourself be intimidated by the work of other people, and never compare yourself. There are always people above you and below you, and at the beginning, you will believe that your work is not worth it and that there is no reason to carry on, and so on. Just focus on improving the quality of your work, for example, if you usually draw characters -either animals or humans- you should study anatomy if you want to move forward with colo and space, study the theory of color and perspective, or even try technical drawing. If you don't have a way of paying for classes or attending a school of art, try to do it by your own means, there are many websites with the reference that while help you grow.
Another important tip is, protect your work, with a signature, with a watermark or try to get the back up of a site. Behance has been a great site to save part of my work.



"Cleaning guy" de Fernanda Soriano en L-vi.com


5.. Finally, I would like you to share an anecdote of your creative work.

Fer: When collaborating in a project as an illustrator, for example in a series of books, in which is very likely that the design of a character is already given, and they ask you to follow the rhythm with three or four people in the same area. You will have to know how to imitate the features, expressions, proportions, and other traits to avoid breaking the whole sequence.
It is important in this case, for you to know how to imitate any other style. For me, it helped to imitate the style of cartoons or series, to every once in a while do funny bits or that at some moment inspired me on another topic. Notice what makes a character, show or movie different from others. And, the only thing left to say is to practice and practice a lot!

    "Cleaning guy"               
 

6. LuceBuona: Thank you so much Fer for sharing with us a bit of your experience and work. I wish you the best in upcoming projects and your research. 
To see more of her awesome work go to her IG account. and her profile on Behance.
"Talk" by Fernanda Soriano at L-vi.com
"Talk"

 ** All of the illustrations gathered in this post belong to their author Fernanda Soriano and were only included in this article as a way to promote her work.

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