INTERVIEW

Posted by Diegodp
on October 28, 2011

Interview to Dumaker

 

We are going to interview some of our artists, and who better to start that Dumaker. He joined our family last pack and he made 3 awesome works. I can say that his work for the upcoming pack is stunning and well, you wi'll see, meanwhile, check this awesome talk we had with him:

Question:

Dumaker (Moisés), first of all, thank you for taking this interview. To begin, how would you describe your style of work?

Answer

First,  I’m deeply grateful that you’ve had the strange idea of this series of interviews starting with me. This is going to be fun… and hard.

It’s hard for me to talk about myself or my work. And it’s not false modesty or anything of the kind - it’s just a consequence of not taking myself too seriously. I do what I like,  and I don’t even do it especially well,  so… Pipe in hand,  I take the interesting illustrator’s pose. Let’s go!

My work? Well,  it’s enough to see a sample of my illustrations to realise (I just did it) that,  for the most part,  darkness prevails,  the gloomy,  the strange… So,  I imagine my work is undoubtedly characterized by being dense and sinister,  though with a few drops of healthy irony. Also,  I try to make the atmosphere stand out from the rest,  always looking for an ambient with character. So the spectator lets their imagination fly and feel they are there for an instant.

Q:

I have seen your portfolio and  it’s very impressive. How do you imagine those characters? Do you get the inspiration from your own life experiences,  or is it simply from imagination?

A:

It would be impossible,  at least for me,  to have created all those illustrations without having gone out to wander around on the streets,  without having experienced in my own flesh things I lived,  without experimenting or having met whom I’ve met… without failing and succeeding in real life. Every moment counts,  every memory is ammunition for the next illustration.

Imagination is important,  but more like a being that creates from nothing. I see it rather as a filter transforming the things that are there. Imagination deforms,  enriches and twists realities I have lived.

Q

You illustrations usually have a touch of irony and humour. What are you trying to express with it?

A:

It’s true,  but also is that I don’t ponder things much… Nor before or after I put my hand to work. I guess I don’t want to express anything in particular,  but that ironic vision,  that conceptual counterpart is the consequence of my way of seeing things. I don’t take seriously many things,  so in my work I try not to let myself be taken by solemnity,  the drama and the epic of a subject,  and always keep a card up my sleeve to make something different from it. Take the drama away. With such dense illustrations like a bitter poisonous puree,  it’s always fun to add some salt and spice to the mix.

 

Q:

And focusing on the professional side of your work,  what are your nearest goals right now? Are you content with your progress so far as a professional artist?

A:

Nice way to bring me down to earth… I was starting to go up in the clouds. Well,  in a situation like the current one,  where the worm-eaten foundations of the system start to crack,  work in the future is uncertain,  for everyone. Culture,  art,  design, … they are a basic pillar of a society (or it should be) until food starts lacking.

In an ideal world,  my next goal is to carry on evolving as a designer and as an illustrator,  although both are two sides (and there are many more) of creativity. So,  no doubt,  the professional is a reflection of the personal in that sense: to keep on growing and learning.

In the real world,  to survive.

Regarding my evolution,  it’s complex. I think I could be much better than I am,  but in order to get there I am convinced I would have had to sacrifice many things that,  in the other hand,  have made me and taken me where I am. I don’t regret it. I have had ups and downs and times when I haven’t touched a pencil… due to lack of time,  inspiration or motivation. I’m trying to recover some of that time and evolve towards something better.

Q:

At this time and age,  facing various economic crisis,  almost all market sectors have become more demanding and competitive in all aspects. Do you think at this point is still possible to think of art as a way of life,  or is it more an utopia than anything else?, 

A

In part I was replying to the crisis topic,  or better be said,  The Crisis,  in my earlier response: I believe the situation will get worse,  and perhaps where are in front of another great empire falling,  a mistaken way of conceiving life. Art also feeds from social convulsions,  of people’s rage and takes part on the reconstruction and birth of the new social forms. It’s united to the human spirit,  and as such there’s no fear for it to disappear. Ever. But it will go hand in hand with the naked man and not the institutions,  corporations or governments. It will not go hand in hand with subventions,  but with the need to create and commitment.

In the other hand,  perhaps today it’s complicated to have a romantic vision of the artist. Someone who keeps his work unaffected by pressures,  someone who only creates moved by his own will,  without prostituting his talent,  is… that rally is an utopia reserved for just a few. The rest of us must make of art a way of life combining it with a much more mundane and grey aspect: create to eat,  design by menu,  paint by request… to put our hands and talent at the service of companies.

 

Q:

With respect to your artworks,  we have seen many,  some good and others very good,  but,  Do you think your best work has been done or is it yet to come?

A:

How crazy! Of course,  my best work is yet to come! If at the age of 28 I thought that I already have in my portfolio my best piece,  I would have a serious problem. I still have loads to learn and every damn day you came across something new,  something useful. Yes,  it is yet to come.

Q:

At what point and for what reasons did you decide to enter the design and illustration world?

A:

Of course,  you don’t go walking down the street one day without direction and the St Mother of graphic design and illustration dazzles you… it’s a process that makes you take a definite path from and early age.

In my case,  since childhood I already filled huge amounts of paper with drawings and drawings… Then you realize that you have something,  even if it’s not shockingly important,  that distinguishes you from the rest (and not only self-decorated notepads “horror vacui”). This makes you take academic and personal paths that end up one day culminating in your professionalization. , It’s the result of: a family that allows,  puts up with,  and supports you; teachers that have motivated you; people that inspires you and help you dream; people that give you opportunities.

Q:

How does a day go by for Dumaker?

A:

By now,  a normal working day is nothing exciting nor worth mentioning,  so I will go back in time to when I studied graphic design,  and I will tell you briefly how it was.

My day started at about 15:00,  when I woke up,  sleepy and disoriented in my huge double bed,  product of having won draw for that room with my housemates. I would eat what I found and then,  I’d realise lessons had started 40 minutes ago. The days I could I would assist lessons happily,  and the ones I couldn’t I would employ them in living.

The interesting bit was at night (the ones fruitful artistically speaking). At about 11 I would lock myself up in my room,  and hours would pass in an almost sick way,  with no specific referents or schedules… just the silence and the will to work. A strange happiness and the feeling,  when going to sleep around 7:30 in the morning,  of not being able to spend any better a night of my life.

Q:

In your works we see all kinds of characters, but rarely repeat themselves. Have you thought of creating a base character to whom different adventures and situations may occur, like other artists do?

A:

Interesting… those type of things never come to my mind. The truth is that few times (probably never) my illustrations have any real continuity. The theme has continuity,  but not to the point of having a fetish creation to which give new opportunities. Although,  now that I think of it,  there is a favourite character that I have repeated: death.

 

Q:

 

If you were not an illustrator. What else would you like to do?
 
A:
 
Fortunately I already do it: to design. Although as  I said, both are facets of something hardly destructible that is the motor that pushes me to create.
 
And if I hadn’t got the luck of being creative in that sense, I would like to have had a strange punk bunk, eclectic and accelerated with which to travel the whole world, yuhhuhuu.
 
Q:
 
Could you describe, in basic steps, how is the creation of a piece of Dumaker, how it starts and how it reaches our screens?
 
A:
 
In that sense I don’t always prepare my works in the same manner, although it’s natural that before, on paper, I sketch the general composition and look for the most attractive. I also prepare brief anatomic studies if the work is requiring a figure. I make views in detail of certain parts. But nothing too elaborated. I don’t leave too much time there (that unfortunately then influences the final quality of the work).
 
Then I put hands to works with the tablet, and try capture that composition with rough strokes. From there the process is a common one: keep detailing from the general to the particular, working the colour and giving the picture the desired atmosphere.
 
Other times I start with a scanned drawing used as a base, and many others I start from scratch doing quick digital sketches.
 
Q:
 
What is the most fun in Dumaker’s life? And what bores you the most?
 
A:
 
Really the great majority of my days are fun, I think because I have learn to squeeze to the extreme small daily things. I can’t travel much, but I have a worryingly vivid imagination. I haven’t got much money, but I have a girl and a white cat by my side that make it not be necessary. Neither I have great plans in my hands, but every weekend I have a laugh with my people, who I really love, that I wouldn’t change for anything. Also I try to take each day, in my work, as and opportunity to improve, learn and have a good time.
 
About getting bored, I’m always bury always doing something. Fuck, I don’t get bored!
 

 

 

Q:

 

We could see in your portfolio more focused to design all kinds of works. Can you comment how is it, for example, to work with publishers, for everyone that is starting in this kind of work.
 
A:
 
My first work with a publishing company was the creation of illustrated books, almost like a comics, for young audiences. In them the pupil would learn to play the guitar. It was fun, stressing, incredible to see them published and didn’t make me rich. Also it was the mandatory creative step from creating foul corpses full of worms to create an always smiling group of carefree children from good families. 
 
My experience with publishers is very limited. It has short deadlines, huge amounts of work, demented corrections at the last minute and a contract. I would say that, surely, prepare yourself for a night life. 
 
Q:
 
What are your main references when illustrating?
 
A:
 
The subject of my referents always leaves me out. I’d love to give a list, alphabetically ordered, of those artists that I admire and that inspire me. I have never idolised any artist, nor follow their career or know all of their work. 
 
This, that sounds like “I’m cool, go my way, have no idols, I’m self-taught and use glasses without glasses” is really the complete opposite. I can’t stop being amazed by work of many people… I hallucinate and my pulse accelerates when I see works from great classics, I see Goya and become white. But also happens with the portfolios of great comic artists, of many current "concept artist", and with the works of the mythical fantasy illustrators. With landscape painters, 3D creators, anonymous web designers, interface creators, animators… Also with my fellow members in the collective!
 
I am moved with almost any work sufficiently good from anyone but, for lack of memory, or the effort it takes, I am unable to be loyal to an specific artist, or feel that one has influenced determinately.
 
Q:
 
At what age did you start to get interested in art? How was that “first time” of satisfaction when making an artwork?
 
A:
 
 
As I said before, it’s something that is always there, naturally… it’s part of me and I cant conceive my life without always playing with a pencil, imagining illustrations, or daydreaming. Regarding that first time, I remember it.
 
It was shortly after buying my first graphic tablet, the smallest and cheapest Wacom there was. A bluish "Graphire", I think. Must have been the year 98 more or less. I was at that time crazy about fantasy illustration: orcs, monsters, dwarfs, and lots of rusty steel. I knew of my limitations and made an effort. So I believe I finished a work in colour that summer, don’t remember which one exactly, but I do remember the thrill and excitement I felt when I saw it finished. The finishing was the most professional I had done to date, it had good colours, a nice landscape, characters and a bit of action. So I stared at it and felt I had gone up a step. There still were, and are, many others to climb ~:)
 
Q:
 
How did you discover Hysterical Minds and how do you see it from inside?
 
A:
 
Martín de Diego (--M--) I the one to blame. He is an artist (fucking good and excellent critic) whom I know long time ago from DeviantArt.
 
It was him who commented me a while ago if I was interested in joining, but it really  seem like a far away idea of a collective and all that he told me went on inside. I didn’t have much time and I always found it hard to get in touch with other people, even virtually. I’m an antisocial rat hahaha
 
However, months ago I found myself suddenly with more time to waste, and I thought that was the moment and the place. And also thanks to the accelerated course on "Hystericalminds.com" given by Liransz, I ended up integrating in the collective.
 
It’s the first time I am in one, or in something remotely similar. And it seems to me fucking good however you look at it. It’s great. It is an extra motivation, a way of meeting people, to help and being helped, to improve, and to get a greater presence and grow as an artist. It could hardly be any better.
 
Q:
 
I had the chance to see you portfolio and it’s incredible. How long did it take you to build it up if we talk about the hands-on illustration work?
 
A:
 
Dumaker.com was a project that I undertook from an imperative need of finding work. Its important to look at it that way, and at that time I needed that virtual arsenal to complement my curriculum.
 
The truth is it took me a long time: to design the web, compile old works, programming it… above all programming. It was a bit overwhelming (I didn’t know to what extent I work surrounded by PHP, XHTML, CSS and ActionScript 3 gurus) I’m talking of months of intense work.
 
 
Interestingly, now I am again projecting my website. It will be less personal and more professional. Better focused. And it’s not going to be me who programs it, so I can fully concentrate on design. I hope to have it ready soon  ~:)
 
Q:
 
To finish, thank you very much once again for having given us this interview and I ask you for some words to all our users who are starting or have been in this for a while. Would would you recommend them?
 
A:
 
I insist, thank you for providing me with this curious, almost psychotropic experience: I am here,  cup of tea in my hand, a sunny Saturday morning, talking non-stop about myself… Yesterday I went out and I’m afraid I haven’t been my best, but it has been fun.
 
My recommendation? Simple… to always enjoy with what you do, to learn with each job, whether it’s a fascinating creative project or a boring commission. To make an effort. And above all, to live. To touch reality, be part of the change, enrich as a person, and then, reflect it in our artworks. Only then they will have a soul.
 
Regards!