Alicia Arlandis is an illustrator from Valencia, Spain, a beautiful city near the coast. She’s been interested in art for as long as she can remember and has been illustrating for over twelve years. Alicia loves drawing, painting, reading, and teaching, both older people and children. She is a graphic designer and illustrator that loves continual learning in both areas. To learn more about her, check out Alicia’s website and Alicia’s Twitter account.
1. You’re a very talented illustrator with a fascinating portfolio online and you’ve mentioned being interested in art your whole life. What are the earliest memories you have that have helped shape your career as an illustrator and what can other parents do to cultivate a love of art in their family?
Since I was little, I remember that in my house, my family valued all artistic ability. We are five sisters (I am the little one along with my twin sister) and everyone, including my parents have artistic skills. Whether painting or illustrating, how to write or sewing … We value all kinds of artistic expression and my parents fostered in me the love of art in a very natural way. I would recommend that parents encourage and empower any child, whether artistic or not. To introduce your children in a didactic way and also cultivate fun hobbies.
2. Illustration software and tools are always changing. What’s your favorite medium or software to illustrate with and why? What are your least favorite?
My favorite method to illustrate is to make my sketches in pencil and then color in Photoshop with my Wacom. I do not dislike any specific method and find them all interesting!
3. Many people wonder what a great author and illustrator relationship looks like. How would you describe your ideal author/illustrator project?
My ideal relationship between author and illustrator is one based on trust, respect, empathy and communication between both parties.
4. Speaking of authors and illustrators working together, do you do freelance illustration? What would be the best approach for an author to take who would like to work with you on a project?
Yes, I’m a freelance illustrator. The way an author approaches me, is to contact me and explain his project. It’s very simple!
5. Being located in Valencia, Spain, how would you describe the international market for illustrators? Has it been easy or difficult for you to extend your reach beyond Spain?
I would describe the international market of illustrators as a very varied market with many opportunities (as long as you are consistent in looking for job opportunities). The difficult thing has been to develop my work within Spain, surprisingly. It’s funny but I value my work much more outside my country. Maybe it’s because of my style of illustration.
6. Speaking of extending one’s reach, how would you advise an aspiring illustrator who wants to grow their international presence?
I would advise aspiring illustrators and graphic designers to frequently look for contacts. It’s also important to review and refresh your portfolio (at least once a year).
7. Most illustrators have people who’s styles they look up to. Do you have anyone you look up to for their artistic style?
I admire many current illustrators but the ones that really inspire me are artists like Alphons Mucha, Gustav Klimt, Frida Kahlo and the Pre-Raphaelite artists.
8. Illustrating any project takes a lot of time and effort. What are some ways you’ve found to speed up the process from concept to delivery?
Unfortunately for me, I have not yet found any method. I am naturally a perfectionist and adore the small details, so that takes a long time. When I am immersed in a project, I have no social life! I sleep very little to make sure the project is delivered on time. Project schedules are very important.
9. I like to close by looking towards the future. What can we expect from you in the next 1-2 years?
I wish I knew! I hope to keep improving and working hard to live my profession.