We come across many types of artists on Design Instruct. By far, our most favorite types are those who are unabashedly passionate and enthusiastic about their work. Mario Carpe is definitely that.
From our brief encounter with Mario, we could easily tell he loves what he does and he’s not afraid to show it. A Spanish artist based in Prague, he displays a sense of flair and gusto in his work that we should all be so lucky to possess. We really liked Mario’s positivity and sense of humor so we decided to ask him a few questions about what it’s like to be the world-class artist that he is. Check out our interview below.
1. Tell us your origin story. How did you get started designing and illustrating professionally?
My origin is funny as my whole life is. I would say I started since was born because I always had a pencil in hand. However, I got a double degree in Law and Business Administration in University Charles III of Madrid, one of the most prestigious international universities for economics and law. Once I finished my degrees in business and law, I (naturally) started to take part in national art competitions, I moved my butt to Prague and decided to follow my dream. The best decisions always start with ‘F*** off… something’.
2. When did you realize you could be an artist for a living?
I never realized it, actually nowadays, I don’t think about it too much. I just keep going. I see my career as more like a road, not just a moment or a place in time. However, if I have to find the moments that were most important for me, it was when I needed to win some national contests. Competing was that push on my back, it made me pay attention on the signs life sent me. The most important thing is to believe and enjoy, enjoy and… Enjoy until you don’t feel sleepy or hungry. You can’t make a distinction between work and spare time, it’s a way of life.
3. Could you tell us about how you found your art style? Who or what are your influences?
I have to say I don´t know how I found it. Actually could say I will be looking for my style forever. Everything is evolution. Along the road, you are experimenting and trying new things but it’s true that you always have to keep your essence, so people can say “That work is from Mario!” I enjoy like a child with new shoes playing on colours. I think they can express much more than a drawing per se. It’s complicated to identify who or what your influences are but I love music and good food. I think musicians and chefs are real artists.
4. What inspires you?
Inspiration comes from everywhere but it’s important to be awake and aware to catch it.
5. Describe your process for your illustrations. What tools or software do you use to get your work done?
I usually don’t employ the same process for each project. Sometimes is directly hand-drawn, other times I use a computer. The only common thing is study and research and the sketch. Sketch, sketch, sketch and when you think you have it… Sketch again.
6. For many artists, their surroundings greatly influence their work. How has Spain influenced your work? Tell us more about the creative scene in Spain?
If I really think about it, I feel I’m influenced mainly by my region, Andalusia which is in the Southern part of Spain, moreso than my country. Andalusia is perhaps best known for their bullfighters and flamencas dancing in the street but this isn’t necessarily true (sorry if I’m killing the dream). Andalusia is, in fact, the land the arts. Everything is colourful, bright, funny and special.
7. What are the things you cannot live without?
I can’t live without love, a pencil, paper, laughs and jokes (don’t include water and food because I guess you will provide it).
8. What kind of work do you get excited by the most?
The most exciting work is always the work that has yet to be done. I love challenges.
9. How do you keep your ideas fresh?
Research, research, research. Go to the market, get ideas and put them into the fridge. Cook slowly and give it your touch.
10. What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned as a creative professional that you can share with our readers?
Everything is possible. If you can see something in your mind and feel it in your heart, you can reach it.