This Mexican illustrator’s passion for nature and surreal creation, made her the ideal match for PROPERCORN’s Fairtrade popcorn, Perfectly Sweet. Elena’s vibrant layering of contrasting shades takes inspiration from landscape paintings and old botanical prints from the 18th Century.

Q: What’s your background? How and when did you decide to become an illustrator?

I studied illustration at Falmouth University so it was pretty early on that I decided I wanted to be an illustrator.

Q: How did you develop your style?

I think it was when I started working with computer programmes to make images that I began to have a more defined style. I realised that I could work and play with colour in a really nice way and it took shape from there. That said, I like to keep evolving and changing as I learn new things and experiment more.

Q: Who are your artistic influences?

What have you read or seen that has most influenced your work? I love painter’s – my favourites include Matisse, Hockney, Gauguin, Morandi, De Chirico to name a few. But I also get inspired by people that surround me in different creative fields, such as set design, photography and graphic design.

Q: Where do you get your motivation and ideas from?

I try to look everywhere for inspiration, although I do think a lot of it comes from looking at other artists and Art in general. Most weekends I go to an exhibition or read art books – something to spark my creativity and inspire me to paint and draw.

Q: What’s the inspiration behind your Perfectly Sweet illustration?

The Fairtrade sugar canes which are used to produce this flavour, as well as landscape paintings.

Q: What’s your favourite part of your Perfectly Sweet illustration?

The colours – I Iove how the two contrasting shades interact with each other to give real vibrance.

Q: Tell us an interesting fact about your Perfectly Sweet design

I got a lot of my visual research for the plants from looking at old botanical prints of the 18th Century.

Q: Sum up your Perfectly Sweet illustration in 3 words.

Vibrant, natural, wild.

Q: What do you love most about PROPERCORN and your chosen flavour?

I like that they use high quality, natural ingredients that are ethically sourced, such as Fairtrade sugar.

Q: How many iterations did it take before you came up with your final design?

Quite a few, the idea was there but the composition took a while to get right.

Q: What do you do to overcome creative blocks?

Sometimes getting out and doing something different gives you a new perspective on the work. If worst comes to worst, start again!

Q: What’s next for you?

I’m in the process of finishing a book which has been my biggest project so far. I’m hoping to make some time to do some personal projects in the near future and maybe travel a bit more.

Follow @elenaboils to see more from Elena.
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