How did you become an artist?
I always liked to draw. Since I was a little kid, I liked to copy illustrations of a Biology book given by my father. From dinosaurs to birds and small breed horses like the ones of “My Little Pony”, those were the drawing obsessions of my childhood. At start, I didn’t visualize drawing as a future career. While being young I thought living from art was something impossible and that I should better quit that dream, which is something I did… Years later I resumed drawing after realizing that I needed it so much, like the air that I bread! :)
At this point, I started my way to become an illustrator. I did a Bachelor degree in Fine Arts and tried to learn from every opportunity I could get. In a time when Internet was just starting, the Mangas I bought were the source of inspiration that helped me and polished my art. Later, I began to work on digital format, because I got frustrated while scanning my watercolors and losing their colors. While I was mastering the technique I did lots of mangas and poster design contests. My first opportunity as a professional came in 2011 when I won two art contests and their award was to publish the artworks. Since then, I haven’t stopped working doing comics, illustrations and lately exploring the animation world.
Where do you get inspiration?
All the Mangas I read have influenced me in different ways, but there’s two that are the main influences of my style. The first is Slayers of Rui Araizumi and Hajine Kanzaka. When I watched the anime on TV it shocked me. I’d never seen something like that (it was my first time watching anime), and on that moment I realized… That was what I wanted to dedicate my life to. One of the other main influences in my career was the CLAMP group, specifically their work called RG-Veda where the elegance of their stroke and their astonishing script blew my mind. More recently, my references come from the work of Takahiro Kishida, character designer of Durarara and Haikyuu!! and Becky Cloonan, illustrator who works in the American Comic Industry.
What’s your hardware setup?
Nowadays, I have a built PC running Windows 10. Regarding tablet devices, I’ve always used Wacom, since I got my first Intuos A5 until the current tablet I use which is a Cintiq 27” HD.
What do you like best about Clip Studio Paint?
Clip Studio Paint is so intuitive and easy to customize its tools. Once you understand how they work it’s simple to tweak them and to achieve better results for your artworks. Besides all the great options of the EX version for Editorial purposes (availability to watch all pages at the same time, adapt the bleeds, etc), it has helped me a lot with the Mangas and character designs I’ve worked. In both cases, it is amazing to have a global vision of what you’re drawing which is vital to see if the different pages/characters are well integrated and working well. Maybe what goes beyond similar applications is the vector layers feature. The ability of reshaping every stroke independently and the vector eraser tool, allows me to freely draw unlike a regular bitmap layer.
How long does it take you to make a single illustration?
Actually, this varies a lot and it’s proportional to the complexity of the illustration but it takes me from 1 hour to 100-120 hours, like in the illustration “Virtual Hero’s Last Supper” (See below).
Would you consider Clip Studio Paint an industry tool?
Totally, I’ve been working with Clip Studio Paint even before it had this name. It’s the software I’ve been using since 2011 to create illustrations and full mangas/comics. From sketches to final version and ready for printing. This is also the software I’ve been using in my work as Art Director and character designer for the TV series Virtual Hero. I’ve never had the chance to look for other programs because Clip Studio Paint already covers all of my illustration needs.
Where can we follow your work?
You can find my artworks on Instagram @lolitaaldea and work in progress plus other craziness on my Twitter @lolitaaldea. You can also find me on Twitch @lolitaaldea where I occasionally do live drawing sessions.
*** Lolita is doing a #Giveaway with us! Reach her post on Instagram, follow her, follow @graphixly and leave a comment. Winners of Clip Studio Paint Pro will be announced on May 25, good luck! ***