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Illustrator, Ernest Priego Martin, takes us through his approach behind making caricatures of various personalities. He speaks about the observation that goes into each of his works and the significance of watching carefully so as to achieve the best execution.

By Ernest Priego

According to you, what are the most important aspects of ensuring justice to represent the actual personalities of people through caricatures?

Ernest Martin: In the first place, the similarity is the most important. Without resemblance, there is no caricature. The thing that comes next is to not offend the person and still tell as much as possible about their personality. Keeping both these aspects in mind, it is rather important to maintain the apt balance that is desired in order to create an effective caricature.

By Ernest Priego

How do you make sure you represent people in a way that viewers relate to the caricatures?

Ernest Martin: I seek that in a single glance the most singular characteristics of the person are known. Every character has his or her own unique traits that symbolise or signifies the person, whether they are the very physical features of the individual or characteristics in the conduct, temperament or personality. I also do that exercise when I look at the person and try to capture the first impression so as to work with it.

How do you decide on the proportion of features in different characters?

Ernest Martin: I do not really decide the proportion of features; as each person shows them through physical and psychological characteristics the proportions that I must emphasise upon in my work. It is something intuitive. It is just about amplifying or focusing on those particular aspects of the person that stands out and strengthen their persona i.e. features that describe their individuality and make them ‘who they are’.

By Ernest Priego

What facets of people’s real-life personalities play a role in your depiction of them?

Ernest Martin: It depends on your assignment or your activity – if you are a politician, actor, musician, athlete, etc. That will influence the final result because it is not necessarily one aspect or the other in a person, but their entire self, which includes what they do, how they do it, their own unique style and expression in the course of the act and so on which defines them.

How have you grown and evolved your style, over the years?

Ernest Martin: There is no magic formula for growing and evolving one’s own style. It all comes down to the dedication, the number of working hours and the quality of effort that one puts into one’s craft, as is the case with just about anything that we choose to do and apply ourselves to. And, of course, learning to look and observe is vital as that is how we learn best.

By Ernest Priego

What kind of changes would you like to see in your existing design trends related, in 2018?

Ernest Martin: I would like to work with other materials such as acrylic, and even merge them with digital – that would be interesting to see in terms of the various processes that could be applied and results that could be achieved. Though at the moment, I am comfortable with what I do and I see no need to change.

How do you think these changes will impact the process and perception of these designs?

Ernest Martin: I do not plan to change the way I draw by much, although that depends on the personal mood. The mood, context, requirement, application and such other aspects determine how a piece of work is executed and arrived at. Anyway, for now, I am rather satisfied with impressing the viewer in the same way as I did in 2017.

By Ernest Priego
By Ernest Priego

Published in Issue 41

Every year brings many opportunities and hopes along with celebrations. For this issue, we reached many visual artists and designers to know their expectations from the year 2018. This issue’s cover designer, Shreya Gulati is exceptionally impressed by the advancement of technology in design, especially how VR & AR has impacted new ways of creating. Honing and sharpening one’s skills is always a quest for every creative. So, whether you have many or none expectations for the year, this issue is a must-read.


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Creative Gaga - Issue 51