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Q&A with Andrea Manzati

Illustrator from Verona

I’m an illustrator from Verona, Italy. My style is simple and geometric with the addition of handmade elements made with ink and brushes to the digital composition.

How long has been your way from starting your career to the present time?

I’ve started my career as graphic designer for different studios in Verona. After changing many places I’ve found a great one, Happycentro, where I’ve spent almost 4 years. There I was able to improve greatly my design skills and to work for a lot of important international clients doing different kinds of projects from stop motion videos to branding.

Meanwhile, I was also working on illustrations by myself and started receiving commissions from Italian and American magazines through my website. When the volume of these commissions started to be high and when I’ve received a proposal from an UK agency to represent me, I’ve decided it was time to quit my job and start working as a freelance focusing only on what I love most: illustrations.

This is my seventh year as a freelance illustrator.

Does an illustrator need special education? What can you say about your experience, what helped you most of all to polish your skills?

In my experience it was not really necessary. My studies were very technical and focused on graphic design and print production. Switching to illustrations was a process that I’ve done by myself, in my free time. I was spending my evenings drawing, experimenting, studying and slowly improving my style.

You prefer to use limited range of illustration styles, do you? When do you feel that you need some space for experiments?

I always try to experiment in my free time. My style now is a bit different compared to 5 years ago, where I was also doing plasticine illustrations. It may change again in the future.

How does your creative space look? Do you prefer working in a silent and secluded environment, or in a buzzy design studio where you can interact with other people?

I usually work at home. If I’m traveling I choose a place to stay where there’s a desk I can use or I go to coworking places. I love to interact with people but prefer a silent place if I have to focus on a lot of commissions.

Who are your colleagues in Italy, could you list some illustrators and designers?

The Italian illustration scene is really vibrant, with a lot of talented illustrators and it will be unfair to name just a few!