What brought you to illustration?
I have always loved children's books, since I was a child myself. Then I studied fine arts and then graphic design. In the middle of professional work I came across children's books again and a bit by chance I tried to make some illustrations and showed them to some publishers. Luckily they liked my work. Almost without realizing it, I stopped being a graphic designer and became an illustrator of children's books. Picture books allow me to tell a story and draw at the same time.
What does a typical work day look like for you?
I don't really have typical work days. The only routine of each day is given by the schedules, because I have a 5-year-old girl and so I have to take her to and pick her up at school every day.
My work day starts around 9 in the morning. Usually during the morning I work on the computer answering emails or doing more administrative things (that's part of my job, too).
According to the project I am in, before noon I am already drawing or painting. If I have time I like to go for a run, a swim or a little walk. In the afternoons I work hard until 5pm while listening to music or a podcast.
After dinner, when my daughter is sleeping, I continue to work a little at home, especially developing ideas or making small sketches.
What was your very first illustration?
I don't remember, possibly because it was so ugly!
What inspires you? Where do you get your ideas from?
I am inspired by nature, the effects of light, movement, expressions. I love the cinema, photography and theater.
My ideas come from anywhere: from movies, from music, from watching my daughter play, from a walk through the forest or through the city. Inspiration can really be anywhere, you just have to be curious and attentive!
Do you like listening to music or audio books while working or do you prefer silence?
When I look for ideas I need a lot of silence. Once I am in the painting of a book, I love listening to stories. That can be an audiobook or a podcast.
What was your favourite illustration you have made so far?
I think any of the illustrations in the book Tout au bord. It's my favourite book.
What can you be found doing when your are not illustrating?
Making bread or cooking, playing with my daughter, having a coffee with friends, singing with my partner who plays the guitar, etc.
What makes the art of illustrating special to you?
What I like most about my job is that it always takes me to unexpected places. Each manuscript is different and an invitation to create a new world.
What makes a good illustrator?
I'm not sure, maybe to evoke strong emotions with his/her work.
Do you struggle sometimes? Do you have to motivate yourself, and if so, what helps? Is there a kind of "illustrator’s block?"
Yes, of course! I worked on some books for years! I think the most effective thing is to go out and live. Stop working a bit and reconnect with reality, people and things. And above all, no computer, no phone calls.