In conversation with UK illustrator Lucia Vinti.
Can you talk about your journey into or interest the arts?
Like a lot of people with artistic jobs, I was very creative when I was little and always loved drawing. My parents have been clearing out the loft and found loads of magazines and storybooks that I made – looking back at them now I’m not surprised at all that I’ve ended up as an illustrator. I will say though that during GCSEs and A-Levels I really lost a lot of my creativity and thought I might end up going down an academic path. However when I did my art foundation I got my artistic mojo back! Initially when I did my art foundation I thought I was more interested in graphic design or other forms of visual communication but when I went to uni I found myself gravitate towards drawing.
I’m interested in what a sketchbook means to you and your work?, or how people develop their ideas. Can you talk about how you use a sketchbook in your practice?
I use sketchbooks a lot when I travel, and love keeping a visual record of my trips. Usually I do a mixture of drawing from life and from photos and I also hoard loads of old receipts, food packets, restaurant napkins to stick in. In first and second year of uni I went through phase where I was completely obsessed with my sketchbook and would be doodling in it constantly. I think this really helped me find my interests and develop my work into what it is today.
At the moment I haven’t really been using a sketchbook and have been enjoying working on more finished pieces, however I’m keen to start doing more writing so I think using a sketchbook could be a good way to combine drawings with words.
Your work on the surface is quite innocent looking, but it actually makes really insightful observations into human behaviour and contemporary culture. What are you exploring though your work?
I just really love observing the world around me and think this filters in to my work. I’m especially interested in the interaction of people with their surroundings. People are so fascinating and I think you can never make someone up from your imagination thats as interesting as a real person.
How do you balance commercial and personal work?
I try and treat my personal work with the same weight and level of importance as commercial work. I find that being accountable to someone else helps make personal work feel a bit more serious, so sometimes I’ll get a friend to set me a deadline or collaborate with someone.
Can you talk about your process of working. How do you work, how often, is there a particular pattern?
It really depends – some weeks I’ll feel really motivated draw all day every day but then the next week I might manage about 10 minutes of drawing and even that’s sometimes a struggle. Ideally when I’m in a slump I’ll go into London for inspiration but obviously that hasn’t been possible lately!
I always work at my desk as I like having all my stuff around me, but in the future I would really love to work in a studio with other people and more space to make mess.
Do you find the process of creating work relaxing or therapeutic? I’ve become increasingly interested in the relationship of the sketchbook and the work to the artist.
I’m not sure relaxing is the right word, but yes I do find drawing therapeutic. Once I properly get into a drawing it’s almost meditative, as all your focus is on finishing the drawing and time can go by so quickly, it’s one of the best feelings! I actually find drawing from life quite stressful as it feels like theres a lot of pressure, so I’ve realised that whilst I love observing things from life I prefer doing quick sketches out and about and taking lots of photos, and then drawing from home.