June 28, 2013

Interview with Abel Jiménez

Some time ago I ordered a little zine called „Atasco!!“ by Abel Jimenez, an illustrator and graphic designer based in Valencia, Spain. I love his work and especially the idea of publishing zines for children. So I’m very delighted to win him for a brief interview.

And yes, I forgive you for your Spanish-English, Abel, it's quite charming and I'm sure, everyone will understand you ;)

Together with your girlfriend Marta Insa you manage Paiorfa, a zine publishing project for children in collaboration with artists and illustrators. How did you come up with the idea to publish zines?

AJ: We love and collect zines, and we always had in mind the idea of illustration books at a reasonable price. Luckily we know a lot of friends illustrators who have helped to make this project.

Could you please tell me something about your fake books series? Are there any more „books“ to follow?

AJ: The first fake book, "Mum is drunk", was really a story in my head, which for lack of time I couldn't finish. Finally the first drawing illustrating the inner text ended up being the cover. Soon I will have finished most fake books, and try to compile them into a zine.

How does your working space look like? Do you work in a shared studio or do you have a workplace of your own?

AJ: Marta (Lana Pelana) and I shared a studio, we work very close, and we show almost everything we do. The only difference between her table and mine is that I'm a mess. I try to clean my desk every day before starting work, but sometimes it is impossible. I feel very comfortable in our workspace, in it we keep and share things, objects that have been with us forever. 

Are there any illustrators who have influenced your work?

AJ: Sure, a lot. There are plenty of young illustrators I admire right now, but my classic favorites are these: Quentin Blake, Abner Graboff, Eduardo Muñoz Bachs and Syd Hoff

And finally, which are your favorite books?

AJ: I love reading all kinds of books, but I love adventure books, animals, travel, explorers and nature in general. I like books that talk about landscapes, animals and plants in an euphuistic and detailed way.  The best example is Gerald Durrell's books, my favorite author.

Please visit Abel’s shop with prints and zines and the Paiorfa Etsy shop! All their zines are handmade bound and available in several languages.
Find out more about the authors/illustrators as well: Joana Rosa Braganca, Maria Herreros, Nuria Bellver and Raquel Fanjul (Cachetejack), Sofia Schiza, Maruta, Amanda Baeza (I wrote about Mr. Spoqui before).