Tell me a little bit about yourself, about your life? Where did you go to school, and what classes did you study? What helped prepare you to be-come the artist that you are today?
OK, I´m Francisco Herrera 30 Years old, I love to draw and I love to share all this with my family, friends, fans, artist, etc etc...
I studied Graphic Design at University for 4 years. I grow up watching Disney, Warner, and all kinds of cartoons, comics, magazines and movies. So I draw all of this any time any where. I was very lucky when I meet Humberto Ramos when I was like 15. He really taught me how to draw, and the most important thing how this industry works, all the tools to be a professional freak ha ha ha!!! Just kidding! Now he´s my best pal and I just keep learning about this crazy industry
How do you go about designing a character, and what goes through your mind, from start to end?
Well I´ll try to type some simple steps to explain this:
1 First you have to have an idea of the character, may be a profile or a simple idea OK!!. try to think as the character.
2 Then I do research on the Internet. I check all the influence I need to create a character, pictures, drawings, fashion stuff, graphic design, animation etc etc.. all images and styles I think will help to inspire me.
3 Then I start to sketch all kind of ideas, forms, anatomy, action stuff, to create the form not detail just forms
4 When I have the form, I start always with the head, expressions and style I´m looking for, then I play with legs hands etc etc..
5 I make a final pencil test, some times like 2 or 3 different sketches and I show this to the company or friends to receive a feedback.
6 With all the comments I start working again with corrections to find the best way to finish the character
These are some simple steps I always use to crate a character it´s hard to explain because some times I spend a lot of time with one character and some times I just pump in the paper, and it magically works. I really enjoy to work!!!.
What is a typical day for you?
A typical day I wake up like 9:30 I eat breakfast, go to the gym like hour and a half and return home to start working all day and like 7:30 I see my girl like 2 hours and then go back home at 10:00 and stop working like 2:00 in the morning, really simple and boring ha ha ha!!! On weekends I spend time with family and friends may be go to the movies than a bar and have nice dinner with a good wine, good food. good night ha ha ha!!!!
What are some of the things that you have worked on?
I worked on Dark Horse (spy boy, star wars tales), Wildstorm (KMKZ). DC(Teen Titans, Superman), Marvel(Spider Man, Venom), Soleil (ASHES), Disney and Warner on characters design and style guides for consumer products
Is there a character design you have done that you are most proud of?
It´s hard to say but now, I feel it´s just the beginning and I`ll would love to draw some special spiderman story. and I really love to draw all the Disney and Warner characters. for me it´s like nostalgic moment ha ha!!!
What projects have you done in the past, and what are you working on now?
Now I´m working on Aspen (SoulFire), and Soleil (New proyect and Skydoll Special), Warner (Style guides) and some new personal project.
Who do you think are the top artists out there?
To hard to say because I have a lot but:,Ramos, Crarlos Meglia, Juanjo Guarnido, Barbucci, Munuera, Eric Powell, Bobby Chiu, Florian Satzinger, Mike Kunkel, Cheeks, Alberto Ruiz, Kahnehteh, Glen Keane, Skottie Young, Jeff Campbell, Mike Mingola, Wendling, and more more more...
Could you talk about your process in coloring your art, as well as the types of tools or media that you use?
I´m in the process to learn, and most of my work is colored by Leonardo Olea and Edger Delgado. They are both great friends!
What part of designing characters for comics is most fun and easy, and what is most hard?
Warner and Disney are the most hard because they have a lot of rules. Comics are more easy but for me all are difficult ha ha!! I'll practice day by day until I`m in diapers ha!!
What are some of the things that you do to keep yourself creative?
Travel it`s always so refreshing, Internet is amazing you can jump in to your computer and see so much stuff from around the world, I think you need to have a life outside of work ha ha !! its the most important thing to be creative, you need friends, sports, experience, fights,etc etc..
What are some of your favorite designs which you have seen?
I LOVE!! All the classic Disney old school design characters, Carlos Meglia, Humerto Ramos, and Florian Stazinger character design lab I am a BIG FAN!!!
What is your most favorite subject to draw? And why?
Well my favorite stuff always is to create new characters, it´s always something new and refreshing that keeps my mind full of different ideas and perspectives I love it.
What inspired you to become an Artist?
I think all this stuff I saw when I was a child, cartoons, movies, magazines, comics etc etc .. big graphic and visual influence, TV has had Big part of this too ha!!!. And since I remember I always like to draw and spend my time with a paper and pencils.
To be honest I don´t know how to explain it ha ha!! just feel so good ha!!
What are some of the neat things you have learned from other artists that you have worked with or seen?
In this graphic world you learn things every day, I find a bunch of artists every week on the web, you need to be open and search all the influence that you need and not just pictures, but furniture, TV, movies etc etc.. All of these things can help us, we need to keep learning and try to be better every day!
What are some of your favorite websites that you go to if you have the time?
Well now I love the blog world, and I jump from link to link and find all kinds of art, I just start with one artist that has a lot of links and then I go on from there. I can spend a lot of hours just looking at art, sculpts, figures toys etc etc.. we as artists need to be careful with this, because we may not be able to get back to work... ha!!
What wisdom could you give us, about being an Artist? Do you have any tips you could give?
In my humble opinion!
-Have fun .
-Practice A LOT!!!!
-As any job the 50% it´s your work as a professional, and the other 50% is networking always very important in your work and in your life.
- Search and fight for the things you want don´t give up and try and try and try and try all the times you need.
-Open to constructive critics that help you to be better.
-Open to fall and raise and fall and raise all the time.
-Feedback with other artists.
-Be in touch with any kind of art.
If people would like to contact you, how would you like to be be contacted?
Finally, do you have any of your art work for sale (Books, sketchbook, prints, or anything) for people that like your work can know where and when to buy it?
This summer I`ll print my first sketch book just 1000 copies hard cover 48 pages I´m so happy ha!! you can buy it on line at http://www.brandstudiopress.com or in San Diego comic con this year and I`ll sale my original pages soon on my web page.