Brightness no 6

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Are you interested in submitting to Brightness?

If you’d like the chance of being published in one of issue , get in touch via this page. Please note that we receive many submissions each day and have limited space in each publication. So show us the work you’re most proud of or the work you specially enjoy creating.

Submission Info

Email your submission to with “ART SUBMISSION” in the subject line. • Submit images as JPEGs or GIFs • Submit up to 5 images • Image sizes should be at least 600px wide and no more than 1000px wide |2

Please note:

• Brightness cannot feature all art/artists • Brightness does not offer payment • By submitting you are granting (Brightness) the right to post your art on this website, on Brightness’s social media accounts, and in it’s Newsletter

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Join our mailing list if you are an illustrator, artist, curator, art director or just interested in art. |3

Digital Journal of Illustration |


SPOTLIGHT | 16 Daniel Perry

THE BEST NEW PICTURE BOOKS AND NOVELS | 20 Ghoulish goodies abound for picture-book fans this Halloween, including I Want to Be in a Scary Story by...


Nuri Ann is spanish digital artist / illustrator, born in 1986. With a Master’s Degree in Fine Arts, she spends some years working as a freelance illustrator while learning digital figurative painting by herself.


GO OUTSIDE, WARM UP YOUR BRAIN | 36 Exclusive Interview with Roger Olmos

CREATIVE SPACE | 38 BRIGHTNESS GALLERY | 46 #iamanillustrator


In This Issue of

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Sonja Danowski graduated with honors in design and since then has been working as an illustrator, picture book artist and author in Berlin. Her detailed pen, ink and watercolor illustrations in warm and muted hues are published and exhibited internationally and have won her numerous awards, such as 2013 and 2015 the Golden Island Award from the Korean Nami Concours and 2016 a Batchelder Award honor from the American Library Association. Fascinated by the richness of every day’s visual impressions, she draws inspiration and develops picture ideas from real life by gathering and depicting details in order to construct new compositions with fictive places and creatures in her images. In this way the sceneries seem real but have never taken place like that in reality.

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Sonja Danowski

Art Director & Editor In Chief

Creative Director & Graphic Designer

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Sadegh Amiri

Sahebe Arefimehr

International Contributor


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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Letter From The Editor



War is over! If you want it

DON’T FORGET WAR CHILD THIS CHRISTMAS It was as if I had to spend hours just to find a piece of good news in the vast expanse of this earth. In every corner of the world the flame of war had been kindled. Politicians were at each other’s throats and flaunted their powers at one another. Amidst these conflicts homes are destroyed, fathers are deprived of their sons, wives are deprived of their husbands’ embraces, the merry laughs of children at play become inaudible, and the once colorful lives of people turn into sorrowful black and white existences. In such a world the only comfort we have is the warm embrace of art. It is as if with the help of art every bullet becomes a coloring pencil used by a child to draw a house with the scent of chocolate cake rising from it’s chimney. How wonderful it would be if instead of bombs airplanes showered cities with paint, so that the world would be a happier place. As you may know, the Brightness publications seek to introduce people to illustration art. If one wished to delve into the beginnings of this profession one need only look to the earliest cave paintings. As illustration artists we need to ask ourselves to what extent we have strived to perpetuate peace, security, and positive emotions to the people of the world. We ask our fellow illustration artists to send us their works on the theme of world peace, so that we may have the privilege of publishing them in this magazine and thereby together be the harbingers of peace We ask our kind readers to send in their submissions to the following email address:

Sadegh Amiri (left) - Founder & Art Director Hasmik (Right) - Founder & Editor In Chief

We wish for a day when war becomes just a meaningless word.


Digital Journal of Illustration |

Sonja Danowski


Traveling To Fictive Places

Sonja Danowski graduated with honors in design and since then has been working as an illustrator, picture book artist and author in Berlin. Her detailed pen, ink and watercolor illustrations in warm and muted hues are published and exhibited internationally and have won her numerous awards, such as 2013 and 2015 the Golden Island Award from the Korean Nami Concours and 2016 a Batchelder Award honor from the American Library Association. Fascinated by the richness of every day’s visual impressions, she draws inspiration and develops picture ideas from real life by gathering and depicting details in order to construct new compositions with fictive places and creatures in her images. In this way the sceneries seem real but have never taken place like that in reality.


Exclusive Interview


Digital Journal of Illustration |

Sonja Danowski

-Tell me a bit about you and your background: where are you from/ where did you study? And when did you decide to be an illustrator? I was born and grew up in Germany. Already in school I loved drawing and painting and I dreamed of becoming an artist. Later I studied design in Nuremberg, we had different courses and illustration was only a little part of it, so I invested every free minute to draw, creating pictures had such a good and calming impact on my mood. In the final year we were free to choose a theme, I made a large sized picture book with hundreds of drawings. After my graduation I moved to Berlin to work as a freelance illustrator. -What is your favorite art material? Why? I use watercolors and ink to define the light and picture mood. I have different kind of brushes but I have one favorite brush, I have been using it so often that its bristles are already shortened. It seems that only now it has the perfect shape to paint, like shoes that get more and more comfortable with wearing them. I like heavy paper in natural white color and I like pencils: graphite pencils to work out the composition before coloring, and sepia pencils and soft colored pencils in gentle hues for the picture’s final touches. -How would you describe your artwork? My artwork shows a detailed fictive reality, my goal is to make the invented sceneries and creatures look real. -How did you find your style? Has it changed since you started? Finding my style was a quite natural process, actually there was no need to search for it, but it just happened, using my favorite art material and trying to depict the scene, the finished artwork turned out to look like that. I have to add, my first drawings did not look like they look today. At the beginning I made large series of doors, windows, stairs, vegetable and everything that I could catch from my surroundings. The composition were simple, but only with help of these simpler pre-studies I felt more and more confident and after a while I was able to draw also more complex scenes and portraits, and in this way also the outcome of the creation process changed. -What types of illustration projects do you enjoy working on? My favorite projects are picture books. I like to see the story grow; I love traveling to fictive places and coming to know the story’s characters by depicting them. The process of bookmaking requires much patience, but it is really worth to keep it up with all its ups and downs. The thought that picture books can unfold their magic in children’s rooms all around the world is the best impetus to work. -Each artist has an inspiration source. Tell us about yourself. How do you find ideas for a project or a book? If I write the story myself the whole process is intuitional and surprising. I really like this way of working and it is also nice to have complete freedom to choose the theme, the final outcome is something that I could never have planned at the beginning. Sometimes I find the key for the story’s idea in a finished picture, or it is something that I had in mind for a very long while. It can also be rewarding to collaborate with other authors and in this way to dedicate myself to difficult topics that I otherwise would never have discovered or ventured on. For example I have illustrated a book that takes place at the end of a war and three very touching Chinese stories; the authors’ texts gave me much inspiration and brought me closer to the themes. - I see that nature has an important role in your artworks, what do you think about that? Definitely! Nature is the purest form of life. Everything that we have on earth has its roots in nature, even though industrial products do not always justice the value and beauty of their origin. As an artist I am especially fascinated and inspired by things that have not been processed yet, that’s why I am attracted by nature. -Your work is so beautifully dynamic, can you tell me more about your

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Sonja Danowski

approach to color, light and combining different mediums? I mostly start with a pencil drawing, I like working in pencil, because with the fine tip I can sketch all the picture elements in detail, and it is easy to make corrections, so that in the next steps I can totally concentrate on the colors. Watercolors come out without white color, instead the unpainted or lightly painted areas on the paper light up the picture. I preferably use a warm and muted color palette with highlights in certain hues like red or blue. I am always fascinated by how we percept colors, it is only possible to see them in relation to the colors around them; by changing the combination you can also change the effect of the color itself. -I know that you have been selected at several illustration festivals, can you tell us about your experience and how has them helped you to develop your work? Especially at the beginning presenting my work at festivals was very helpful for me. Already during my studies and shortly afterwards I sent my work to the Illustrators Exhibition at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair and to Ilustrarte in Portugal. I felt so surprised and encouraged when they were selected for the exhibitions out of so many entries. It was like someone gave me a green light to follow my way and to enter the field of picture book art. -What do you think about the importance role of illustration festival? Do you agree with them or not? I like the enthusiasm and the internationality that comes along with festivals. In particular I like those events that are free of commercial aspects but have an idealistic value, and follow the

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goal to support the artists and celebrate the importance of illustration, like Ilustrarte or the wonderful Nambook Festival in Korea. -What was the project that you feel you learned the most from? I think it is always the project I am currently working on, because every project is a new challenge and leads to something, sometimes in larger and sometimes in smaller steps. -What do you like best about being an artist/ illustrator? I love working in my bright and calm working space that is also my living room. Despite of spending most time at home at the drawing table, I have the chance to connect with other cultures and to travel. The internationality of the illustration and picture book market is very enriching. - What is the most challenging about being an illustrator? Maybe it is being patient and persistent. Every new project starts with a white piece of paper. To finish a picture it takes several days and to finish a whole picture book it takes several months. Creativity isn’t a steady measure; there are days full of energy and days full of doubts. It is so good that later, when I hold the finished book in my hands, I totally forget the time and effort that was needed to finish it, investing time in creating something is always a good thing. -What is your best piece of advice for young artists who are getting started as creators of children`s books? Follow your own way and rely on your own perception and ideas; don’t get irritated by the creations of other artists. One great aspect of art is that there is no wrong or right and no better or worse, but you can feature yourself towards others by uniqueness. Never lose your idealistic attitude and stay patient.

Exclusive Interview

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Sonja Danowski

Exclusive Interview

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Digital Journal of Illustration |


Daniel Perry has a complex practice that encompasses a wide range of disciplines including fine art, printmaking, design and illustration. Having first studied at Central St.Martins College of Art, he followed this with a further two years study at the Royal College of Art (89-91) combining illustration with painting under Professor Dan Fern. Perry left England in 1991 to visit Scandinavia. What was intended to be an initial three day visit to Sweden extended to last for many years – the country and his experiences there and in neighbouring Denmark affecting both the artist and his resulting practice. Combining both Fine and Commercial Art, Perry has worked in many visual disciplines. From time spent in Berlin in ‘89 creating artwork on the Berlin Wall, to an avid interest in the use of graffiti whilst in Brooklyn, New York, this has continued to be of influence to this present day. Perry has also engaged in many commercial projects. Along with freelance graphic and illustration, he has created large scale murals, set up a greeting card company in the U.K. which will eventually trade as (, He has also worked in theatre, designing and building sets, and worked with teams involved in interior design for cruise ships and diversely also pub design and building. Daniel Perry currently lives and works just outside London.

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D a n i e l Pe r r y

I l l u st r a t o r

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The Creative Space Spotlight

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Children’s books roundup

The Best New Picture Books And Novels Imogen Russell Williams |

The Wolf, the Duck and the Mouse by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen


houlish goodies abound for picture-book fans this Halloween, including I Want to Be in a Scary Story by Sean Taylor and Jean Jullien (Walker). Asked what sort of story he’d like to be in, Little Monster demands a scary one. But a spooky forest and haunted house prove too perturbing – and he wants to be the one doing the scaring … This is beautifully structured for reading aloud; a vibrant, viewpoint-flipping picture book that should lessen small readers’ fairytale fears. Also from Walker, The Wolf, the Duck and the Mouse by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen is a subversive delight. When a wolf meets and instantly devours a mouse, a happy ending seems unlikely; but the wolf already contains another resident: a duck, who enjoys the cosiest of creature comforts in his windowless abode. “I may have been swallowed,” declares the defiant bird, “but I have no intention of being eaten.” The earthy darkness of the wolf’s interior contrasts with soft shades of moonlit forest in this unexpected, hilarious collaboration.

The Grotlyn by Benji Davies

Benji Davies’s The Grotlyn (HarperCollins) also examines the terrors of the unknown, via rhyming text and a dark Victorian landscape full of aproned maids and silhouetted chimney pots. Rubi is afraid of the Grotlyn after she hears a noise on her way up to bed; when she discovers the sound’s true source, though, her anxiety is allayed. An unusual, thought-provoking story of unfounded fears and a joyous flight to freedom. Addressing courage in a very different way, Malala’s Magic Pencil (Puffin) tells the beguiling tale of Malala Yousafzai’s dream of a magic pencil and her discovery of education’s transformative power, in a beautiful paean to children and their potential for heroic change. Husband-and-wife duo Kerascoët’s watercolour illustrations, with their golden flourishes and bursts of pink, perfectly complement the text – the black page detailing the Taliban’s attack on Malala (“My voice became so powerful that dangerous men tried to silence me. But they failed”) is a clear and resonant call to arms. Sleuths aged five and above will rejoice in Hiro Kamigaki’s Pierre the Maze Detective: The Mystery of the Empire Maze Tower (Laurence King), a follow-up to the bestselling original story about Pierre. Seductively intricate, with the narrative guiding the reader via ballrooms, sweetshops and fairgrounds to the pinnacle of the titular tower, this gorgeous combination of search-and-find and maze is seeded with exciting hidden extras – mini-mazes, trophies and stars to spot. Too fascinating for bedtime, it’s the perfect rainy-day companion. Alex T Smith provides more mysterious high-jinks in Mr Penguin and the Lost Treasure (Hodder), featuring a seabird-turned-private detective, his silent spider sidekick Colin and missing treasure concealed in a museum. Full of fish-finger sandwiches, secret jungles, nefarious plots and cryptic codes, it’s addictive slapstick, with Smith’s appealingly arch black, white and orange illustrations. Tom Fletcher’s The Creakers (Puffin), meanwhile, is a stonkingly good novel for the over sevens. One morning, Lucy Dungston wakes to discover that the town’s adults have vanished. How will the children – glamourpuss Ella, geeky Norman, and conscientious Lucy herself – manage without them, and can they be brought back? Laced with direct addresses to the reader and gleeful descriptions of malodorous underworld creatures, it’s both a compelling adventure and a nuanced celebration of friendship and family love, to which Shane Devries’s vigorous illustrations add inclusive richness.

Malala’s Magic Pencil

Pierre the Maze Detective: The Mystery of the Empire Maze Tower by Hiro Kamigaki

Digital Journal of Illustration |


The Land of Neverendings by Kate Saunders

Readers aged eight and over are in for a treat in Kate Saunders’s new fantasy The Land of Neverendings (Faber). Emily is mourning her sister, Holly, with whom she once shared stories of Smockeroon, an imaginary idyll; her mother’s friend Ruth is mourning her lost son Danny. When Danny’s old toys begin to appear, bickering and picnicking, in the “hard world” of reality, Emily realises that Smockeroon may not be so imaginary after all. But the door between worlds is not supposed to open … A delicate, funny, poignant exploration of grief, love and memory that has the welcoming warmth of an instant classic. In The Midnight Peacock (Egmont) Katherine Woodfine brings her tautly plotted Edwardian series The Sinclair’s Mysteries to a stylish conclusion, in a book filled with deft characterisation and delectable period detail. Sophie and Lil, now transformed from shop-girls to detectives, must first join a fashionable house party at snowy Winter Hall, then foil a fiendish plot at the Midnight Peacock New Year’s Ball if they are to discover the truth about the Baron and, at last, defeat him. Fantasy fans will devour Jessica Townsend’s striking debut Nevermoor: The Trials of Morrigan Crowe (Orion). Morrigan has always known that, as a cursed child, she will not live past her 11th birthday. When she is saved by magical traveller Jupiter North, however, she does not expect the impossible challenges that await her in the It Only Happens in the Movies by Holly Bourne | 22

The Midnight Peacock by Katherine Woodfine

fascinating world of Nevermoor. Detailed, inventive world-building, a strong heroine and a rousing refrain (“Step boldly!”) all make for a splendidly involving read. For teenagers, Juno Dawson’s Grave Matter (Barrington Stoke) is a super-readable illustrated novella of lost love and dangerous yearning. When Eliza is killed in a car accident, Samuel is willing to do anything to get her back – even to enter the world of hoodoo and accept the Milk Man’s dangerous assistance. A deliciously succinct, creepy chiller, interspersed with Alex T Smith’s shadowy, atmospheric images. Amy Reed’s The Nowhere Girls (Atom) follows Grace, Erin and Rosina, outsiders in a small-town community in Oregon, as they take up arms on behalf of a girl raped by three members of the high-school football team, challenging the apathetic complicity of the powers that be. Told from multiple perspectives, at once harrowing and heart-lifting, it’s both an indictment of entrenched victim-blaming and a demonstration of what can happen when girls lay aside their differences to demand better treatment. There is more clear-sighted feminist analysis (and many more belly laughs) in Holly Bourne’s latest young adult novel, It Only Happens in the Movies (Usborne). Audrey, weathering the aftermath of a big break-up, declares war on the cliches of romantic comedy while simultaneously trying to hold notorious charmer Harry at arm’s length. It doesn’t help, however, that they are co-workers at an indie cinema, or that film-mad Harry is attempting to shoot his first zombie feature. Boasting emotional depth and believable heartbreak alongside such memorable lines as “frostbite of the bumhole”, this is Bourne at her outrageous, courageous, necessary best.

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Digital Journal of Illustration |


Exclusive Interview With NURI ANN


PECULIAR GIRLS Nuri Ann is spanish digital artist / illustrator, born in 1986. With a Master’s Degree in Fine Arts, she spends some years working as a freelance illustrator while learning digital figurative painting by herself. She is currently working full time with her Peculiar Girls project, female characters inspired on human emotions that she uses as a mode of expression. In them she reflects dreams, desires and the lost of innocence. These lonely characters can seem fragile, naive or melancholic, but also disturbing and sinister. Peculiar Girls want to tell you a story using their gestures and their eyes. Can you hear it? | 24

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Digital Journal of Illustration |


Tell us about yourself. How did you get started as an illustrator? How did you find your style? My name is Nuria, Spanish illustrator and digital artist; however the name with which I sign my works is Nuri Ann. Like most people as a child, I liked drawing a lot. When I grew up, I continued doing it, and I decided to study Fine Arts. One of the most pleasant memories, I have of my childhood, is hours and hours immersed in mountains of illustrated stories and comics (many comics). So I guess this influenced me a lot, when choosing this profession. In my last years of my career I started to specialize in illustration, and I also entered the world of digital painting in a self-taught way. Finding my style took me a few years, it’s not easy. It’s a slow process, it takes time, experimentation with many techniques and styles, but above all you have to be honest to find yourself. At the beginning I used traditional techniques, such as graphite, Indian ink, collage, watercolors and gouache. Step by step, I was introducing the digital technique in my works. The truth is that there were years of intense work and many mistakes, which led me to find a language of my own, with which to express | 26

myself. Now my final works are 100% digital. How many times do you tend to draw a character until its right, and also how do you know that it is right? When I’m creating a character, I always start by drawing the eyes. If I look at them, and they transmit something to me, that´s good and I finish it. If not, the drawing goes directly to the garbage. What is the difference between editorial illustration and other ones? The editorial illustration ranges from commissions of magazines and press, to book publishing, cover design, illustrated album, etc., among them the pace of work and delivery times are different. The advertising illustration is a wild work rhythm, I don’t know if it would fit with my calm character. Fashion illustration is something I have never considered. Even so, I believe that the borders between the different types

Exclusive Interview

of illustration, as well as between illustration and art, are sometimes diluted. Maybe at a given moment the style of a child illustrator can fit perfectly into a specific project of fashion illustration. With what technique are you more comfortable? The pencil and the computer are my co-workers. The pencil allows me to capture ideas more immediately. I use digital techniques to play with the color palette and create the atmosphere, in which the plot unfolds. It allows me to correct errors and change colors in a short time. Tell us about your recent project. In recent years, I have devoted almost full time to working on my personal project: Peculiar Girls. They are female characters that I use to tell stories and convey emotions through their eyes and gestures. They usually look directly at the viewer so that it is immersed, and becomes part of their history. I like to create disturbing environments and situations.

Do you enjoy working with a handmade aesthetic, or do you do a lot of computer work as well? What is the process you have for creating your illustrations? Do you use any special technique? Please tell us about that. The technique with which I work is digital, but I try not to abuse it. That is, I try to make the final product look like it has been painted with gouache or oil. First I make the pencil sketch, where I work the composition and the light, and then I pass it to the computer. Then, I choose the color palette and use the brushes carefully, as if I were painting in oil, with transparencies. Shadow by shadow, I superimpose them one by one with great patience until the characters acquire volume. This process, in some works, can last two or three months. How do you approach creating an illustration? And is that different depending on if you are working for a client or for yourself?

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If it’s a personal project, the starting point is my inner world, my memories and experiences. I also feel strongly influenced by traditional stories (Snow White, Little Red Riding Hood, etc.). If the work is for a client, the main thing is to capture the essence of the idea that the client proposes, but without neglecting your approach and your way of telling things. Your works are based on strong concepts and direct language and it is interesting that for you the content of your work is more important than the visual representation of it. Do you have a process for developing your ideas? I believe that the power of illustration lies in the narrative burden, in what you want to tell, although aesthetics is also very important. When you have an idea in your head, the creative process never stops (you think about it when you walk on the street, cooking, having a coffee with friends, etc.) all the things that come to my mind, I write them on paper during several days. Then it’s time to investigate the topic that you have to develop, give a thousand ideas to find an image that tells, provokes, suggests or encourages the viewer to think. Best / most fun part of your job: To draw. To imagine and create environments. The creative process: starting from an idea, researching and finishing an unexpected site. Worst / most difficult part of your job: Everything else: bills, bureaucracy, seek contacts to give visibility to your work ... and long hours of solitude at the workplace. But dedicate yourself to doing what you like compensates for all this. What types of illustration projects do you enjoy working on? Although in recent years I have been focused on illustration for an adult audience (“Peculiar Girls”), I also had commissions for children’s illustration that I enjoyed very much, now I am immersing myself in the world of the illustrated albums ... The truth is that all the projects I welcome with the same enthusiasm, each one gives me something different. How do you imagine the future of illustration world? It would be great to live in a society flooded with illustration. I hope that the power of images will be used more to make us think for ourselves, not to tell us what we have to think. What do you think about e-books and apps like a new field of job? We live in an accelerated society where this type of products allows you to consume books quickly and at a very affordable price. It seems to me an interesting way to explore new ways to interact with the reader, create stories with interactive illustrations, etc. But I have to confess that I have a weakness for the book as an object... The smell of the ink, the feel of the paper, the illustrations, the typography and the high quality of a good edition, for me, are not comparable with what an e-book can offer me. Who are some of the other artists you take inspiration from? Many ... infinite. In social networks I discover new artists every day with an incredible portfolio. I have always been attracted to the Pre-Raphaelite movement and Symbolism. But if I had to highlight concrete artists, I like the irony and the atmosphere that Marion Peck creates in her art; I admire Ray Caesar’s technique, and I love the artwork of Stephen Mackey. I like an artist, whose work disturbs me and removes something inside me. | 28

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Around The World

Federica Ubaldo

The Food Portraits project consists in a series of surrealistic portraits inspired by food, which is a peculiar element in many illustrations of mine. I enjoy the colorful and funny side of food and I am influenced by the mid century design and illustration. For this project I took inspiration from the aestethic of 50’s American diners and cafes and from Rockabilly style

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Catarina Sobral

I’m currently working on a picture book about climate change, deforestation, marine pollution and other ecological and societal threats to the planet Earth. In the story, our planet gives up on humanity and suddenly goes away. First, people try to find habitable exoplanets, alternate universes, philosophical or political solutions, but they find nothing. So they decide to take one small, obvious step, to stop harming the environment, even if it is already too late. Or so it seems…

Carole Hénaff

The last book I’ve illustrated is “Ali Baba and the forty thieves” for a Korean publisher “Blue Rabbit”, which will published in January 2018. Ali Baba is a poor woodcutter. One day, while cutting wood, Ali Baba hears the chief of the forty thieves uttering a magic formula: “Sesame, open up! “. To his surprise he sees the rock open to this order. After the departure of the bandits, Ali Baba enters the cave and discovers immense treasures. He leaves the cave carrying with bags of gold.

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Around The World

Sarah Perkins

My animal triptych was originally inspired by Earth Day an annual event that is now globally recognised and is held to demonstrate support for environmental protection. As an illustrator/ artist the obvious way for me to mark and celebrate the day was in a series of images. The subject of environmental protection is so vast and too broad to cover entirely so i decided to focus in on a subject that was something i felt quite passionately about and that was how the natural habitats of animals are being affected. From there, in order to show the diversity and impact of change, i decided to take three very different environments, the Arctic, the sea and the Borneo Rainforests. I had just finished my second children’s book on Talulla the polar bear cub and had, during my research, read a lot about the loss of sea ice, essential to the polar bear, due to global warming. This felt a good place to start as i already had a lot of researched material. At the centre of my picture stands a solitary polar bear. The landscape is bleak and industrial.He stands on a melting iceberg and sadly looks at his reflection in the puddles of water while tourists take his picture on organised bear tours. In the northern light sky the afternoon sun shines down, reflected in the melting waters and a reminder of the cause to this problem. My second image looks at plastic pollution. I wanted to get a sense of another sphere, one we don’t see so easy to ignore. The boat floating above reminds us of the human world. The view we see is the animals point of view. The seabed is littered with plastic bottles; turtles and seals live alongside plastic bags; sixpack plastic rings; plastic fishing nets all bringing there own hazards and potential death to the ocean’s inhabitants. My final image is a haunting, charred landscape of Borneo deforestation. An orang-utan clings to one of the last remaining trees whilst huge orange diggers clear away the last remains of her home. The horizon is littered with fires and filled with thick smoke.

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Pierre-Paul Pariseau

I’ve been working lately on the cover image of two publications from Calgary, Canada. One is for BeatRoute magazine, the cover is about a local rock band called The Dudes.As they are on the road a lot, I have pictured the musicians playing between highways. The other cover image is for City Palate magazine. It is about a small island in the Strait of Georgia, near Vancouver. The island is now very much known because of the medias. The island is beautiful and the food great!

Sylvie Bello

The last book I illustrated is entitled “Essere Umani”, edited by the Italian publisher Topipittori, it is part of the Pippo collection and was made in collaboration with the Diocesano di Padova Museum (Italy). Essere Umani is a drawing book that allows you to discover the body and the thousand possibilities to represent it through the works of art from prehistory to today. On the 3rd of February 2018, the 9th Biennale of International Illustration, on the theme of the body, will be inaugurated at the Diocesano De Padou Museum.

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roger olmos

Exclusive Interview

GO OUTSIDE WARM BRAIN Exclusive Interview with



Born in Barcelona in 75, started working as a trainee at the Institut Dexeus as scientific illustrator. 4 years later he entered the school of arts and crafts Llotja Avinyó of Barcelona where he specializes in children’s illustration and ends his career with honors. Still enrolled, in year 99 is selected in the international Children’s book fair in Bologna where he meets her first publisher. From then until now illustrates over 60 titles at national and international different publishers.

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

roger olmos

Tell us about you and when did you decide to be an illustrator? I always have been in touch with any kind of art, in my house my father use to paint at home, he was a graphic designer, but without computer, all hand made. So the smell of paint, gouache an turpentine and many art books have been always present. At school, like all my friends, we use to allways draw, the difference is that I never stoped, My books were always full of drawings. We use to travel a lot through the country, visiting many museums, churches, chapels and cathedrals. I was always fascinated by sacred paintings and sculputres, huge and laborious altarpieces that make you feel a tinny little person. Many relics in the center and some times a nun or bishop mummified. It was not about religion that came my fascination. I was more fascinated with all this darkness and pain that those masterpieces and sculptures reflected, surrounded by this ancient silence illuminated by a thin ray of light. I think because this, many people says that my works breath some time a little bit of… dark. But not only this, also

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Eddy, this character allways present on the Iron Maiden band, and the great illustrations from Brian Froud and many others inspired me too. So when all my friends were deciding which career they had to choose, I discover that I could live from this, so I landed at the Llotja Avinyó school in Barcelona to study Illustration. How do you define your illustrations? It’s difficult to say… maybe some times melancholic, other are more crazy, humorous, others maybe painful, some times i try to make you travel to the past… I don’t really know how to describe them... With what technique are you more comfortable? I’ve tried many’s, and actually now I’m working with oil paintings. I love the colors, textures. Oil let you work slowly, so you can correct, eliminate the marks of the brush, and the paper the paper does not wrinkle. The only bad thing is the smell. Would you explain more about your books, do you prefer philosophical story or fictional ?

Exclusive Interview

Philosophical in a way to wake some thoughts inside minds of readers (or watchers in my case). When I do a entire book myself, story and illustrations, I like to be critic with some ideas or establishments that are in our society. WORDLESS and AMIGOS talk about how we treat animals in this world. But I think that is better to make you think a bit, showing you some situations where later it is yourself who make final conclusions. But just giving the informations, trying to be objective and showing what they are playing with, and the most important, not lying. But some times I like to illustrate just for fun, some nonsense story just to make you laugh, or represent ridiculous situations, or melancholic… depends of the moment. What is the importance of philosophical role specially nowadays? I believe that even if it’s from reality or fantasy , illustrated books have, beside others functions like to have fun, make you dream, or feed your imagination, they have to educate. To show how to be sensible in front a situation, colors or textures. Inspire other minds with scenes illuminated in a particularly way. Show important values that they are going to find in their real life. As I said in the last question always telling the truth, without hiding the reality. Sickness exist, war exist, poverty,

really bad people very well dressed also exist. Typical stories where pink princesses fall in love with the eternal blue prince for example have done quite pain to so many people… In my case for example, I’m in fight with all this authors that keep telling their beautiful stories in places like circus, farms or Zoos. Places where they want to show how animals are willing to make children happy or pretending that their life are easy and pleasant in those places. The reality is that those places are prisons for them, horror concentration camps where they loose they freedom and soon or later they will find a painful death because our benefit, fun for the ignorants and money for the cruel. So those are not themes to make beautiful stories for their benefit, these beautiful stories should be for their freedom. So For me I think this is the important role of philosophical in children books, don’t lie them when you deal with real issues. How many to draw a right, and know that

times do you tend character until it’s also how do you it is right?

Never enough time… And I never know if it is ready (jajaja). We work with deadlines, so from the first minute they give the OK, time is running out. Many times in the middle of a project, they come to your head new ideas or different ways to do it… to me it

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

roger olmos

happens constantly. But i guess that it arrive a moment where you have to learn to know when to say stop, and here you have your new character. The main character is going to be with you the whole Storie, she or he or it has to reflect the personality, the psychology of she’s or he’s or it’s behavior, and make it fill it to the reader. so when you get that, is done. Where does an idea come from and how does it transform from an idea into a book? From everywhere, the illustrators have to be the best “observers” in the world. Every detail, movement, color or shape could inspire you. It is very important to read, to watch films, go outside, see the clouds, find forms in a dirty wall… that’s our food. All those things plus our personal experience and mixing it with a bit of craziness, you can get the idea you are looking for. The difficult think is to realize that this same idea, all along your whole life, is going to have to change, it has to mature. For example: there are many ways to represent a simple scene where some one is having a coffee. In the reality anybody stops in front of some one who is having a pleasant cup of coffee in a bar. But in a illustration, you are going to observe this situation closely, and it is my job, to give you more information of this situation: is she waiting for someone? is he just having some minutes of relax? is she nervous…. mysterious because the way the light touch her, keeps her face in shadows… but I show the smoke of a cigarette over her head been traversed by some ray of lights? | 40

Exclusive Interview The difficult is not only to have the idea, also is difficult what to do with it once you have it. How do you decide what to include and what not to include in the book? When I do do the story board, you create many scenes to explain the story, normally you are attached of a determinate number of pages, so you can not extend to much on some pages to explain something. You choose in function of which of these ones will create some tension, or maybe to arrive at this moment of the story I going to need three steps to make understand what is happening. At the end you see which scenes you need and which ones you can avoid. How do you find thinking about the book as a whole – the text, illustration, design – in comparison with illustrating someone else’s text? I think it is much more difficult to do a whole book by your self than to illustrate a story from another one author. When they give you a text you have everything done, you only have to worry about characters, architectures and the style you are going to use. But you own story? is very difficult to create a clima or to be sure if this is the way you want to explain it. Most of times, during the process, you are correcting many times the way to end it, or how you get to this point, I need to do 4 scenes more but oH! no more pages!! so I have to cut some other from the begining… it is always like this to me. Who or what has been the biggest single influence on your way of thinking? My father on the way of working, the way he educate me pushing me always to think that once something is finished, a second time it can be better done. And I can say clearly my wife. She’s been a example of how to be consistent with your life. That’s how I did get in touch with veganism. But not only with the respect to other species, as well on our dairy relation with other people. Most of what I am today, I I owe it to her. Can you give some advice to any illustrators out there who may be looking to become a children’s book illustrator? Every day, when you’ll walk outside, worm up your brain, try to see everything, every little detail is important. Bring always with you a small sketch book and a pen, and draw something when you’ll have those little moments waiting for someone or something. Be yourself, don’t try to be others. It’s OK to be inspired by other people, everybody does, But try to use it a a tool to transform your own thoughts, transform it in your own language. And… don’t know, think that it always could be better, maybe on the next one ;) | 41

Digital Journal of Illustration |

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roger olmos

Exclusive Interview

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

The Creative Space

The Idea was born in 2009 - 52 different designer from all over the world create the world finest playing card set. limited to just 999 pieces. everyone design just 1 card in his own typical style. after a few weeks we were sold out and we won different design prices like the „red dot communication award“. three years later we start the edition 2 with exactly the same concept. after the first edition in a silver metal box, the second one was black and our newest is just white. zeixs - the publisher startet in 2006 and is a part of the german based communication agency 12ender. they published more than 50 books about different design themes like Logo Design, Graphic Design, Poster Design, Signs & Symbols, Packaging, … Get 1 of the last decks before they are also sold out. you will find

more informations about the included designers here: | 44

e Creativ Space THE

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Brightness Gallery



This section is devoted to the works of some of the best illustrators from all around the world. As with any real gallery , ours too aims to introduce and present those creative and elegant artworks which are created by both of professional and enthusiastic young artists. However, as opposed to the real galleries, this one will not be restricted by physical barriers or geogeraphical borders, which implies that artists could easily connect to a wider range of audience worldwide.

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Maria Brenn

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Brightness Gallery

Chris Ferrantello

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Dominic Bugatto

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Brightness Gallery

Juanjo Gasull

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Irene Servillo

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Brightness Gallery

romi lardies

Catarina Sobral

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Nekane Fernandez

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Brightness Gallery

Rabee Baghbashi

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Sarah Perkins

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Brightness Gallery

Paulete Traverso

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Sylvie Bello

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Digital Journal of Illustration |

Dream Moods

FEBBRAIO Lisa Biggi (Author), Isabella Grott (Illustrator) Edizioni Valentina, 2016, Italia.

What happens when time does not persist in passing? The book begins with this feeling of estrangement that adults, as the little protagonist says, do not seem to realize. “Quell’inverno sembrava non dovesse finire mai. Gennaio era passato da molto tempo, ma la città restava avvolta in una coperta bianca e soffice.” The same cover, painted with few colours, recreates a suggestive atmosphere and immediately warns the reader: in this story, there is something special. “Nubi scure chiudevano fuori il sole che non riusciva a illuminare le strade, il giorno e la notte non si distinguevano più e i bambini non potevano uscire a giocare...”

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February, is a magical story, written by Lisa Biggi, a tribute to the strangest month of the calendar: the coldest, the shortest, the last before the arrival of spring and what, sometimes, stretches for a day. With the idea of explaining how it was born on the 29th day of February, the book tells us about a winter evening and the meeting between a child and the spirit of the month of February. That night, the young Tommy had gone out with his little dog to take a short walk when he saw moving in the trees a strange figure that created with the breath of clouds of grey smoke bizarre. “Aveva occhi piccoli come fessure da cui usciva una tristezza giallina, e se ne stava lì immobile, mentre il vento gli pettinava i sottili capelli bianchi.” February is a tormented spirit, moved by envy for the longest months and for those more beloved that it tries to recover the lost time preventing the spring to return. “Ogni anno tutti sperano che io vada via per lasciare spazio alla bella stagione, così io passo in fretta e nessuno si ricorda di me. Ma quest’anno ho deciso che non me ne andrò finché non avrò recuperato il tempo perduto. Sarà un inverno interminabile!”

It will be the child, with a certain amount of courage and cunning, but also driven by genuine empathy for the lord so high but so short, to suggest the right solution. “Febbraio, che è un mese misterioso e bizzarro, rubò un giorno in più solo ogni tanto, ogni quattro anni, per continuare a creare scompiglio tra gli sbadati.” The book speaks about the shortest month of the year and provides food for thoughts. It is an imaginative key to read that strange day, the “29 February”, that arrives sometimes, even with the little ones. The couple Biggi – Grott has already collaborated to publishing project a based on a poetry of Lisa and published on an Italian magazine “Illustrati” (Logos). In the illustrated poem “Come se fosse una pianta” we again see the dimension of time joined to that of nature. Just like in February, expectation and change are gently intertwined with each other.

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Dream Moods

Digital Journal of Illustration |

COME SE FOSSE UNA PIANTA *** AS IF SHE WERE A PLANT Quanto tempo ho sprecato prima di diventare una pianta! How much time I have wasted before I became a plant! Ora i miei piedi affondano nella terra umida e accogliente, poi secca, marrone e friabile, poi ancora gialla e dura. Solida. Now my feet sink in the soil which is damp and cosy, then dry, brown and friable, then yellow and hard. Solid. Le gambe un tempo inutili, sono riparo per gli insetti che giocano a nascondino dietro le mie ginocchia. Un grillo mi solletica con le antenne, il mio stelo ha un fremito, ma io non rido con la voce. The legs once clumsy and useless, now provide a shelter to the insects that play hide-and-seek behind my knees, a cricket tickles me with its feelers, my stem tingles but I don’t laugh with my own voice.

I have roots as fine as hair, they are a bride’s embroidery, the veins of an old man, where the story of a whole life slowly flows. Braide. Non mi muovo ma non resto ferma, se mi guardi da vicino ad ogni stagione cambio un po’. In estate fiorisco ed il profumo dei miei petali rallegra i romantici e le api. I don’t move but I am not still, if you look closely a me, I change a little from one season to another. In summer I bloom and the scent of my petals cheers up romantic people and bees. Le mie idee hanno un profumo discreto, va bene così. A volte fiorisco anche in inverno, per errore, quando sono così felice che dalla gioia potrei arrampicarmi fino al soffitto del tuo cuore. My ideas have a delicate scent, that’s ok. Sometimes I blossom even in winter, by mistake, when I am so happy that joy could make me climb up to the ceiling of your heart.

Ho radici sottili come capelli, sono il ricamo di una sposa, le vene di un vecchio signore, dove scorre piano la storia di tutta la vita. Intrecciate.

testo © Lisa Biggi

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Ma poi l’inverno deve continuare. E continuare a passare. But, then, winter must go on. And go on passing away.

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Digital Journal of Illustration |


We’re looking to recruit volunteers to join our team. ( Brightness ) is an international digital magazine discussing and exploring the field of illustration. We are making an effort to improve the standing of illustration as an independent profession in the world. As another major objective, we feature outstanding and creative contemporary illustration projects in various fields.

So, we are looking for volunteers to help us in these areas: - French/Spanish to English translation (assistant needed). - Publishing and collecting illustration news from around the globe (illustrator or illustration student needed) Obviously, you’ll be part of our team and we will publish your name as one of our own colleagues.

Email us at:

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Welcome Articles From Writers

Brightness welcome articles , researches and interviews from writers, activists, journalists and also from artists around the world, on topics that we deal with regularly or on topics that you think need a wider circulation in illustration subject. We are most likely to publish those articles which are well-written, concise, offer a unique progressive perspective and have appeal to national and international readers. Please keep submissions under 1000 words. Since we have a small editorial staff, we cannot spend much time editing submissions. Please send us final drafts of your work. We do not guarantee that we publish all the articles we receive. They will be published after a confirmation by twice of the managers. Please send all submissions as plain text within the body of an email - you can also attach the article, for the safer side. Please include your name, contact information. A short paragraph bio is a must. If you wish, you can also send a thumb size photo of the author. We’ll be glad to publish it along with the article. You can submit your articles to i n f o @ b r i g h t n e s s m a g . c o m One word of caution. When you are submitting articles use the word -submission- in the subject line. Finally, it is very important to respect copyright and write the names of artists who their arts are used by you in the caption.

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