The 7 Spanish illustrators you should know, Bryan Stepwise Blog

The 7 Spanish illustrators you should know

Today we talk to you about women who use art as an artistic expression and have managed to make it their way of life.
A totally inspiring work that we love and motivates.
A passion that knows no limits. Hands that materialize the intangible: concepts, feelings, experiences.
Each and every one of them has their own personal style that is easily recognizable.
The (coveted) complexity of making your work unique.
A secret that not everyone has: that of one's own identity. Perhaps, it is the result of doing things with the most absolute sincerity and honesty . Also, the result of a lot of work and perseverance that knows no limits.

Let's start!

Valeria Palmeiro {Madrid, 1989}

Illustrator , passionate about music, cinema and fashion. Without a doubt, a frenzy of references and concerns that nourish the work and essence of this artist every day.
He confesses that his alter ego arises from choosing “Coco” for his beloved Sesame Street character and combining it with “Dávez” , an invented last name.
His work is characterized by the use of a pop aesthetic , flat colors and full of life. A colorful, happy and fun work.
He began his journey in 2010, assuming certain breaks in his creative career that helped him rediscover himself, define his style and know what he wanted to do. 

We highlight his work Faceless , the collection that has had the most significance of his work and the one that has given him the greatest impetus to this day.

He confesses that it is the first one with which he really began to enjoy painting .
With it he has exhibited in cities such as Madrid, Lisbon or Santiago de Chile.
He has also published a book with the same name with the Lunwerg (Planeta) publishing house.

This collection is made up of pop art portraits in which singers, actors, actresses, musicians and other famous people are immortalized.
These are faceless but easily recognizable portraits , made with flat colors.
Recognize without seeing them. A challenge achieved.
Personalities such as Bill Murray , Amy Winehouse , David Bowie , Frida Kahlo and Picasso are portrayed through the prism of Coco Dávez.

We consider it very interesting to rescue this fragment that the illustrator answered in one of her interviews and whose message we love:

“I think taking risks is completely essential. I was afraid of making mistakes until relatively recently, but when you give yourself the benefit of the mistake everything is much more relaxed and the journey is more enjoyable. Just like taking risks, it is also essential to make mistakes, it is what you learn the most from, it is necessary and beautiful. “It is the best thing that can happen to us, especially in an artistic career.”

Paula Bonet, {Vila-real, 1980}

Paula Bonet began training as a painter , using techniques such as oil painting and engraving.
It was as an illustrator when she began to gain recognition on a large scale, playing with vibrant colors in her works and portraying, for the most part, women who talk about feelings.
They are drawings that invade, that move and that manage to remove the most hidden parts of oneself.​
The mix of landscapes, animals and other elements manage to transport the viewer to one of their memories.
It is the magic of empathizing with a work.

Following the line of this style, we highlight his book "What to do when The End appears on the screen"

If there is something that characterizes Paula, it is a continuous reinvention and evolution . He does not stagnate in a style, but rather tries, gets his hands dirty, innovates and investigates.
Always with the same common thread, he plays with different techniques. Starting in 2016, he experiments with liquid graphite and etching.

The artist's work is also linked to the music scene, making posters for groups such as Vetusta Morla or The Black Keys .

Perhaps the most profound project (linked to music) has been done together with The New Raemon , giving shape to the book “Quema la memoria” , where the singer-songwriter's career is illustrated under the hand and creativity of Paula Bonet.

She has recently published 'Rodents' , a double book composed of a story that she drew about the girl she was expecting and 'Body of a pregnant woman without an embryo' in which she narrates her painful experience of abortion.

Perhaps the most personal work of the artist, in which she herself is the subject of the narrative and where, from the most introspective pain, she breaks taboos and gives visibility to a reality that is not yet understood in the current social context.

We leave you with a very interesting interview for where he talks about this publication. READ INTERVIEW

Rebecca Khamlichi, {Madrid, 1987}

If we delve into her website, we are left with the first words she uses to define herself: “She is not a painter. “It’s a way of painting.”

We declare ourselves fans of this vision. It is not what you do, but how you do it that defines you.
His work mixes very disparate concepts that manage to have a harmony when they are united on a canvas at the hands of Khamlichi.
Religious iconography, copla and cartoon aesthetics merge in full color and shape the style of this artist, creative by nature.

A pop and naïve art full of color and where popular culture is always present.

Brands like Samsung or the Mad Cool festival have counted on her to capture their art on a large scale.

Rebeca has also entered the literary world , launching her book “Las hijas de Antonio López” in 2018. A raw story, based on real events from the artist's own life, where she portrays her family and the scenes of her childhood.

She already had her first foray into the publishing field with her friend and singer Zahara , together with whom she published the book “Semaforismos” , in which Zahara wrote and Khamlichi drew.

{Huelva, 1982}

The illustrations of María Hesse grabs the audience's attention with her big eyes and intense colors.
His technique is mixed , mixing gouache and Indian ink.
His work is made up, for the most part, of female figures mixed with floral/natural elements that captivate with their softness and sweetness, while managing to give off an overwhelming force.
It happens to us that with each of his drawings, we are invaded by the feeling of letting ourselves go , as if we were floating. It's intoxicating.

Among her works, the beautiful biography of Frida Kahlo stands out, which has already been published in fifteen countries in twelve countries.

Another biography: that of David Bowie.
One of our favorite publications is the book “The future is female” (translation of “Future is female” , feminist claim).

This issue talks about women's empowerment and in it María has worked with more illustrators such as: Agustina Guerrero , Ana Santos , Naranjalidad , Lady Desidia , Laura Agustí , Elena Pancorbo and Amaia Arrazola .

We also highlight one of her facets linked to music , and that is that María Hesse has gone on stage with the band Maga to draw their songs during their live concerts.

Music and Illustration. The two disciplines talk about feelings, experiences, and materialize them in different ways. How nice that they both dedicate themselves to explaining the anatomy of a feeling. We love!

Artists like Zahara are also present in her inspiration and work.

Carla Fuentes {Godella, Valencia. 1986}

Previously known as "Littleisdrawing" , the heteronym with which she played drawing on social networks ( Fotolog , MySpace , Tumblr ...) more than ten years ago.
Platforms that were booming back in 2007 and that were the first showcases for artists like her, who has always been up to date in the use of social networks as a showcase and dissemination of her work.

Carla's work does not conform to the usual canons and seeks beauty and harmony in imperfection.
Each of its strokes capture stories, places, characters ...

At the beginning, she opted for the world of fashion design , but it was not a field in which she felt comfortable, and she later enrolled in Fine Arts, where she did find her leitmotiv.

The artist has worked for brands such as Pull & Bear, Women' Secret, Nike, Bimba & Lola, Swarovski, Lladró and Mango.
It is also linked to the world of music . In fact, one of her windows towards the recognition of her work as an illustrator was the development of the design of what was the first album by the Valencian band Polock (and all those that continued).
Artists like Zahara (whom we have already mentioned three times throughout this article as a result of her concerns beyond her discipline) also counted on her for the design of their album "The Fabulous Story"

María Herreros {Valencia, 1983}

She is one of the most influential illustrators of the moment.

He works with illustration, comics and personal work with his own language based on the deconstruction of the individual physically, to show new, altered realities.

Like Carla Fuentes, she has also worked on projects for large brands such as Coca Cola , Reebok or El País.

Her book "Marilyn Had Eleven Toes" is one of our favorites of all her work. In it, María presents biographies of 20 Hollywood actresses, actors and directors, focusing on the most curious , surprising , dark and extravagant aspects.

Selected for the ILLUSTRATION NOW! project 5 from Taschen, this artist has worked with several of the most important publishers in the country: Lunwerg , Diminuta Editorial , Ultrarradio , Norma or Dibbuks .

We leave you with this video-documentary that we love: WATCH VIDEO

Belén Segarra {Valencia, - }

She has been working for a few years as a freelance illustrator in her studio in Valencia and is also an art director on audiovisual projects.

His style is fresh , vital , dynamic , uninhibited , punk .
Bright colors and modern figures flood the visuals of this illustrator, who is not limited only to paper as a workspace.

"Segarra could not determine the moment when he decided to be an artist, but he knew that he should dedicate himself to it when he began to show more interest in the execution of the work than in the piece itself."

He cites an interview that smoda has with the artist and we think it is interesting for you to read. You can find it HERE

Brands like Heineken or Swatch have focused on it.

Animals and nature are also present in his work, which gives off energy and a lot of power everywhere.
Don't be fooled, because there is also a lot of intimate character in each stroke, but it is hidden very well :)

We hope you liked this tour!
We have really enjoyed taking this brief tour of such inspiring jobs and careers.
Obviously, there are many, many more artists whose work is fascinating.
We have only selected seven (our lucky number), but we are open to new suggestions and discoveries. Suggest us artists!
There are never enough references.

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