Photo Credits | Bojan Koprivica (www.bojan.smugmug.com)


Here's a talent you need to know, stat: You could easily lose yourself in her feminine & beautiful illustrations, which are a cool combination of fashion, colors and art. Here, the German-based Virginia Romo tells us about her personal influences, her work and process.

 


*PS: I just stole it from the USA gymnast Laurie Hernández. Even bought a light sign
for my studio which reminds me to keep that attitude for everything in life.

 

I first became interested in Art when...

Art with a big “A” wasn't around at home as I grew up. But crafting definitely did: especially the women at home would not spend a day without creating something with their hands. Most of the time it was sewing and knitting. One of my grandmothers used to sew for Balenciaga in his first atelier in San Sebastián. And my father really knows how to draw, which always impressed me. I loved him teaching me “tricks” to draw better. I met real art in secondary school and then in the university when I studied architecture. And I loved it. I mean I loved learning about the history of art and how it always represents the ideals and the biggest fears of its time.


The story behind Virginia Romo Illustrations...

Being an illustrator has been my dream job since ever. As I was a teenager I used to spend the whole day drawing and I couldn’t think of anything better than to keep on doing that for the rest of my life. But in the small town where I grew up and in a time where you could not find out how the real illustrators had made it, it was for me completely unrealistic to become an illustrator. I just didn´t know how. So I went to study architecture because I knew there they would, at least, teach me how to draw properly. And they did. My architecture faculty had a very heavy schedule regarding drawing: 16 hours a week for two years, pure drawing –statues, sketches, still life, watercolours… I used part of my time, still studying architecture, to learn fashion design. Also just because of the drawing part of it. I had been drawing women and fashion the whole time and wanted to do it better. So, after graduating as an architect everything slipped like automatically – I started working for a big company and the whole illustration idea remained just a nice dream. Until 2010, when I decided that I would give it a try. By that time, life had taught me that many things are possible and the internet made it really easy to find out which steps other illustrators had followed to make their career true. So: I started and it went well. I have been drawing for advertising agencies, publishing houses and home décor producers. Last year, I decided to take the final leap: If illustration in general had worked, then my absolute passion – fashion and style illustration – had to work too. I just had to allow it to myself. So I changed my website to showcase only that part of my work and since then I invest all my self-promotion efforts in that direction while I still work in the other fields.
 


My signature style is...

Sketchy fashion and style illustration.


And I love fashion illustration because...

I love fashion and I guess what for other people awakes an urge of buying it or sewing it for me is an impulse to draw it. It is a way of owning the pieces I admire or I would like to create. When the drawing is finished the work for me is done. No need to sew or buy the piece any more.
 


My inspirations are...

Traveling, the women types in the streets or in different countries and cities, old film scenes, fashion shows and magazines and of course Instagram and Pinterest, which I use to create specific (secret) boards for many projects for clients in the home décor branch.


My favorite Artists are...

Giorgio Armani, René Gruau, Alvar Aalto, Edward Hopper, Edgar Degas, Lora Lamm. What I admire in all of them is the simple, reduced elegance and a sort of serene melancholy in the work of some of them.


Most challenging moment on my career was...

First time I had to illustrate a text book: It is a commitment for a long time and the drawings have a longer life than in other uses. But it went well: in six years working as an illustrator I have illustrated five school books.


My exclusive Design Series with MY Sweet Invitation...

...are a direct fruit of my heart. They are illustrations I drew without any specific purpose but to draw something beautiful and to enjoy doing it: no briefings, no corrections from clients… I just wanted to draw them. So, they are a real piece of myself. This is what I draw for me, to have fun. The fact that MSI had interest in them and has created a collection of objects which carry these drawings is just great! Drawings that were meant to give me joy and have a very short life on Instagram can now bring that joy to other people who will use those objects for a longer time.
 


MY Sweet Invitation in 3 words...

Feminine, joyful, stylish.


Best way to start your day...

In summer: coffee in the sunny balcony, hearing the birds and seeing the plants have grown. In winter: coffee too and sketching in a still dreamy mood.


A typical - busy - day of an artist seems...

Answering mails, sketching new drawings for clients, finishing ongoing ones, “researching” on Pinterest, sketching just for fun after lunch, uploading it to Instagram, doing some paper work like writing a quote or, even better, an invoice… ha-ha! If I make some time for sport, then it is a perfect day.


In my free time...

I practice ballet and go jogging. I am the eternal ballet beginner (I even wrote a post on my blog about it). I love the whole aesthetic and discipline behind it and it is the perfect exercise to avoid a painful back, which is a common complain among illustrators. Jogging is something I started enjoying only this year, I hope it will stay because it helps not only physically but mentally too. But I also draw a lot in my free time. I always travel with my sketchbook. And I travel a lot: at least every two months. Sometimes to see my family, sometimes to ski and, as often as I can, to the seaside. I love to swim in the sea.


As an artist I could never live without...

...drawing, of course. But then changes in the perspective is what really nurtures my soul. The easiest way to achieve is by travelling but the luggage of different cultures and languages makes it possible to look almost everything with new eyes just but trying to do it. You don’t need to travel to see the things around you with new eyes. That and fashion, ha-ha!


A good piece of art should always...

...make you want to keep on looking at it, trying to get lost in it.


Tips for people interested in arts...

Open your eyes, look at what is in front of you with a different point of view and listen to what others have to say. There is a whole exhibition going on around us the whole time. Well, real exhibitions and art books are good too, of course.



3 things we didn't know about Virginia...

#1: I was a finalist at a fashion design contest organized by Wonderbra and Marie Claire as I was still an architecture student. My poor mother had to sew a wild dress I had designed without suspecting that I would come that far to have to really make it. It was fantastic to see the dress on the catwalk. I think it was the first “magic” thing that happened in my life and showed me that the possibilities are greater than what you first imagine.

#2: In primary school I was taught how to make embroidery and type with all ten fingers, which nowadays comes in very handy. Not the embroidery, the typing I mean.

#3: I love to listen to languages I don’t understand at all. Just enjoying the way they sound and imagining that those very same sounds have a meaning for other people.

 

Find Virginia Romo on:

Blog: www.virginiaromo.com

Instagram: @virginiar0m0

Snapchat: virginiar0m0

Facebook Page: Virginia Romo Illustration or @VirginiaRomoIllustration

Twitter: @virginiar0m0

Pinterest: Virginia Romo Illustration

Google +: Virginia Romo


Photo Credits | Bojan Koprivica