MONTEVIDEO – The Uruguayan illustrator on sketch pads and audiovisuals, Sabrina Perez, whose work will go on show at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, told EFE that her creative process is like working in a factory, but one that manufactures pictures.
The artist, 36, said this is because to fill the series of frames used in stop-motion animation – such as in the animated cartoon “Anina” – she has to produce endless drawings, and with practice she acquired an “eye for drawing.”
At the same time, she said it’s “fun” to see how these drawings “begin to flow” almost as if they were creating themselves, and added that when she draws, she doesn’t do it thinking about a juvenile audience but rather in ways to make the illustrations roll out spontaneously.
“They come out with a child-friendly tone because I’ve worked on many things related to the juvenile world in audiovisuals, like ways to tell stories, illustrate ideas – you keep incorporating them,” she said.
From April 1-4, Perez will exhibit at the event in Italy a work born of small sketches tucked away and forgotten in a sketch pad more than two years ago. They consist of five images that begin to tell the story of two human beings who live in a bottle until one day they decide to escape.
“I worked cutting out paper stencils and painting with pencil dust. I developed backgrounds that way, then I scanned them, downloaded them to my computer and played at putting the characters against those backgrounds. So from those two processes the illustrations were created,” the professor said about how she turned out a sequence of drawings.
Out of almost 3,000 applicants for the book fair worldwide, 76 were chosen and only seven were Latin Americans out of a majority of Japanese and Taiwanese.
Though the artist admitted she had no clear idea why there are so many more Asians than Latinos, she believes it’s because the Far East has a graphic culture that goes back millennia.
The artist considered the Bologna fair important because she meets people there, illustrators, and can see a large number of books.
“Bologna is good because it has everything you need to see in the world of publishing and illustration,” she said.
The first contact the artist had with this international event was last year, and this trip to the boot-shaped country inspired her to experiment more and create “Miniature.”
“Seeing the textures, colors and techniques up close, absorbing all that was what struck me the most and made me want to keep experimenting with the plastic arts,” she said.
This book fair, considered an international showcase of the publishing sector, has been held in the Italian city for more than half a century and attracts publishers, illustrators, authors, booksellers and other links in the publishing chain.