Nottingham-based illustrator and comic book artist Luke Pearson is best known as the creator of the ‘Hilda’ graphic novel series—and for the Netflix animated series based on them. Unbeknown to most people, he has worked as a storyboard artist on ‘Adventure Time,’ creates stop-trick animations with his partner Philippa Rice, and used to draw comics that had nothing to do with ‘Hilda.’ Shortly before publicly announcing the discontinuation of the series we met him at his Pictoplasma exhibition to talk about the genesis of his graphic novel, the intimidating move from the books to an international TV series, and the different levels of scariness in both media.
Justin K. Thompson is an award-winning production designer with years of experience working for such illustrious outfits as The Jim Henson Company, Lucasfilm Animation, and Cartoon Network. Most recently he served as production designer for Sony Pictures Animation’s celebrated Academy Award winner ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.’
During the Pictoplasma Conference 2019, we talked with Justin about being self-taught in a highly competitive industry, taking a leap of faith with new technology, needing over 200 tries to visualize invisibility, and why he prefers to remain unseen.
Philippa Rice, known as the #1 New York Times bestselling author of ‘Soppy,’ is an artist working in a number of different media including comics, illustration, animation, model making and crochet. Philippa lives in Nottingham, UK, with her partner Luke Pearson and their daughter, and has recently released ‘BABY: A Soppy Story’ a collection of all new comics and illustrations about the small, intimate moments of a couple expecting their first baby.
We met spontaneously at her exhibition during the Pictoplasma Conference 2019 where she introduced us to her growing family of characters, gave insights into her working process, talked about the difficulties of finding the right work/life balance, and the importance of being honest…
Iza Rutkowska, a Polish visual artist, designer, educator and culture manager, uses artistic tools to integrate communities and instigate social change. She designs interactive objects in order to catalyze people’s energy. She creates playgrounds with children, backyards with residents, she transforms monuments into animals, and travels the world with a giant teddy bear.
Living the dream? Her work has also its dark sides. We talked with her about how happy endings often require digging in your heels, about the pain of allowing your creation to have a life of its own, and why surprising people (while disguised as a tree) is the future of city planning.
Although trained as a product designer, Cairo based dina Amin loves to explore intersections between disciplines. In 2016, she started a side project ‘Tinker Friday’ on Instagram, where she combined her passion for product design and stop motion with consumerist critique, showing people what’s inside the countless things they throw away. We met up with her after her tinker workshop at Pictoplasma 2019, where attendees were invited to create characters out of broken smartphone parts, defunct earphones, and a mountain of obsolete electronic waste. She told us why she loves to take things apart, what our products reveal about us and the society we live in, and the complications of buying a Dremmel in Cairo.
Cabeza Patata, the illustration and animation studio formed by English craftswoman and illustrator, Katie Menzies, and Spanish 3D artist and animator, Abel Reverter, are building a world of strong but playful characters that pop up everywhere with their bold colors and badass attitudes.
We talked with them about their first steps as a collective, how 3D character design is still subject to weird gender issues, and why it makes more sense to acknowledge being part of a larger trend than pursuing the myth of the genius in the bubble.
After taking her first steps on the animated feature ‘Max&Co,’ Félicie Haymoz was hired as the lead character designer for Wes Anderson’s ‘Fantastic Mr. Fox,’ tasked with turning Hollywood A-Listers into lovable furry animals. Next she moved on to design the entire cast of charming human characters for Wes Anderson’s second animation film, ‘Isle of Dogs.’ During the 15th Pictoplasma Berlin Conference we chatted with her about the joy of pairing humans with their spirit animal, the pros and cons of Wes Anderson’s communication style, and why working for others can be a real relief.