Little Gaston stole our hearts!

Today we want to share with you this super charming and brilliant picture book called “Gaston”. The well-written story about staying true to oneself and questioning what “looked right” but “didn’t feel right” is brought to a whole different level with the delightful illustration of Christian Robinson. His skillful use of colours and brush strokes creates some of the most captivating characters in picture books out there. Other books illustrated by Christian include Rain!Josephine and Harlem’s Little Black Bird. Here is a little inspiring talk we had with him about “Gaston” and his upcoming books.

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Hi Christian, please tell us something about yourself?

I love making things. Simplicity is my friend. It’s important for me to create things that make me happy. Telling stories with pictures makes me happy. I live in San Francisco and work in a shared artist studio. This morning I watered my plants, ate a bowl of cereal and wrote this.

Why did you make the book “Gaston”?

Because I fell in love with author Kelly DiPucchio‘s charming manuscript. It was like reading an instant classic. Gaston as a character really resonated with me. I think it’s important to have books for children that challenge gender norms. It was a joy to illustrate a boy pup that likes flowers, pink and things typically thought to be for girls. There is such a beautiful message of belonging and finding where you fit in. Gaston reminds us to be true to ourselves.

What is your next book(s) in the pipeline?

One book coming out in the fall is The Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade written by Justin Roberts. And here is a peak at a book I’m currently illustrating (that I shouldn’t say too much about just yet) written by Mac Barnett.

Thank you for sharing such nice inspiration with us!

Thank you for reaching out and shedding more light on “Gaston”!

Here are some more behind the scenes stuff of “Gaston” that Christian generously shared with us. Enjoy!

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This blog was first published on Kuvva blog.

Little Gaston stole our hearts!

“A-Z of Unusual Words”

Do you know what dactylion or montivagant means? Even our CMS (content management system) tries to spell-correct these words as we type them out. How aren’t we aware of the existence of such words (yet they exist)? Well, mainly because they have too uncommon or atypical meanings that almost nobody uses. They become (sadly) abandoned and lost.

However, James and Michael Fitzgerald from The Project Twins studio have decided to revive them by casting an art spell. 26 unusual words with their initials running from A to Z are chosen and accompanied by beautiful illustrations that imaginatively explore their meanings.

This awesome series has been exhibited during Design Week Dublin 2011, awarded a Merit in the 3X3 Proshow and featured in 3X3 Illustration Annual 2012. You can order posters and other prints of them online. Check out some of them here and share with us what you think by leaving a comment below!

Dactylion: An anatomical landmark located at the tip of the middle finger.

Montivagant: Wandering over hills and mountains.

Tarantism: A disorder characterised by an uncontrollable urge to dance.

Yonderly: Mentally or emotionally distant; absent-minded.

Biblioclasm: The practice of destroying, often ceremoniously, books or other written material and media.

Noegenesis: Production of knowledge.

Recumbentibus: A knockout punch, either verbal or physical.

Fanfaronade: Swaggering; empty boasting; blustering manner or behavior; ostentatious display.

Vernalagnia: A romantic mood brought on by Spring.

This blog was first published on Kuvva blog.

“A-Z of Unusual Words”

The art of being silly

Today we’d like to feature the work of illustrator Javier Arce, who, by the way, is going to be on our marketplace soon! We’re big fans of his fun, imaginative and witty illustrations. He tells great stories with just a few simple lines. His illustrations can be seen on book covers and t-shirts. For example, “The girl with the Pynchon tattoo” here…

… was chosen to print by Cotton Bureau and was sold out! We had the opportunity to talk with Javier and find out more about his knack for making silly illustrations. Here’s how it went.

Please tell us who you are and what you do on a day-to-day basis.

I am a human being that happens to draw silly things because life is, for the most part, sad and scary.

Why did you make Silly Inc. then?

I started it because I was young and needed the money… aaaand also because I discovered that, in the margins of my Illustrator canvases, I had many tiny drawings (proofs of concepts, failed attempts, little diversions, etc.) that were pretty decent. I thought that it would be sad if they remained hidden. And I decided to polish them and give them a second chance.

It is a decent chance indeed! What are your future plans with it?

Merchandising, of course! No, no, wait, I just plan to keep drawing and (in general) keep being silly.

Good luck! Keep up the good work because we really enjoy your silly illustrations!

For the record, Javier also has a very nice blog called “Watch them move”. It’s a super awesome and inspiring collection of animated films from all corners of the internet. Make sure to check them out and let us know if you want to see any of the animations featured here!

Silly Inc.

This blog was first published on Kuvva blog.

The art of being silly

Meet the charming Robin Davey

We’re super excited to feature Robin Davey‘s illustrations this week on Kuvva app! There is full of charm in the rounded shapes and vivid colour schemes in Robin’s work. Recently we had an opportunity to talk with him, here is the full story.

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Hi Robin, please tell us about who you are and what you do!

I’m Robin Davey, an illustrator and animator based in (currently) sunny East London. I make things for print and screen, which has so far included editorial illustration, advertising, apps, games and kids’ TV. Also GIFs, lots of GIFs.

How did you come to do illustration?

I went to art college originally to study fine art, but it drove me a bit crazy. So I retraced my steps back to my first love, drawing, and switched to the illustration course. After graduating I got work making Flash games and my interest in animation grew from there. I spent a good few years as a jobbing animator before developing the style I’m known for now, which came about more or less by accident. I started making GIFs for my own amusement between paid jobs, a few of them got noticed on tumblr and it just picked up from there. I still feel new at this somehow, which I’m thankful for.

What is your future plan?

I haven’t really had a plan up to this point but I seem to have drifted in roughly the right direction, so more of the same probably. As far as ambitions go, I’d like to find more time for personal projects, maybe a book or exhibition. And I’m interested in the possibilities of interactive and installation, so I’d like to collaborate on something in that area. Plus there are still plenty of sites and publications I’d love to get my work in to, but I’m too proud to beg : )

Thank you very much!

We’re very curious to know which one is your favourite in Robin’s collection. Don’t forget that you can buy these awesome illustrations (license included) on Kuvva!

“Space Ark”

“Family”

“Geek”

“Getaway”

“Jobs”

“Sporty”

“Vikings 1”

“Vikings 2”

“Vikings 3”

“Vikings 4”

“Students 1”

“Students 2”

“Travellers”

“Vikings 5”

“Treehouse 1”

“Treehouse 2”

“Treehouse 3”

“Treehouse 4”

“Worker”

“Shopping”

This blog was first published on Kuvva blog.

Meet the charming Robin Davey

Meet the Kuvva team: Thijs

Let’s give a big hand to the next Kuvva team member we’re going to stalk talk today: Thijs, our beloved chief pencil!

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Please tell us a bit about yourself… please…

I grew up in the Netherlands and my background is in graphic design. Going to art school always makes people say “so you must really know how to draw!”, which has never been the case for me. I mainly love solving challenging puzzles, working with vast amounts of information, with people from all kinds of backgrounds. To me, being in the position where everything comes together – strategy, story, content, design and technology – is great.

When did you join the Kuvva team?

I joined in April 2011, two months before we launched. Besides the founders I was the third person on board, after Ruby developers Jeroen and Roy. For a while Kuvva has been a hobby of ours and since the beginning of 2014 we have been working on Kuvva to turn it into a sustainable business.

What do you work on a day-to-day basis?

I lead the design effort and work closely with the engineers, developers and fellow designers to make sure all of the different elements work together. Building Kuvva is a real team effort.

What’s your favourite illustration on Kuvva?

Moon by Dan Matutina and Space Ark by Robin Davey.

Which illustrator do you think is still missing on Kuvva?

That would be Tom Haugomat and Jon Burgerman.

This blog was first published on Kuvva blog.

Meet the Kuvva team: Thijs