Fionna Fernandes’ colourful, vibrant and psychedelic style gives portraiture a pop culture twist.
Fresh out of uni, the Sydney-based creative was recently nominated in Lost At E Minor’s Young Creative Australians Awards, alongside emerging talents like photographer, Bryce Thomas.
And it’s not hard to see why. Her illustrations resemble Lisa Frank’s works, albeit with more contemporary (highly millennial) subjects and themes – such as Star Wars, Arianna Grande, and Drake.
We talked to Fionna to find out more about her and her art.
We are in awe of the use of colour and texture in your work. Where does this unique style emanate from?
“The vibrant colours in my work originate from my childhood favourites: Lisa Frank, Super Mario and My Little Pony. All these cartoons use multiple bold colours and are almost psychedelic. The expressive textures in my illustrations came from experimenting with mark making during a university workshop. I liked how the marks looked, so I decided to use them as backgrounds and thought it looked interesting.”
Who were the big influences on your work as you were getting going as an illustrator?
“The biggest influences on my work were (and still are) Laura Callaghan, Hattie Stewart And Lazy Oaf. Laura Callaghan’s work is incredibly detailed, super colorful, and lady oriented. Her female characters are badass and beautiful, influencing me to illustrate women with individuality.
“I love Hattie Stewart’s illustrations since they are incredibly unique, cool and dynamic. Her use of marks and patterns has inspired some of the textured backgrounds in my work.
“I am obsessed with the London fashion label Lazy Oaf. Their designs are colorful, cartoony, youthful and weird. Their clothes always make me smile, encouraging me to create fun and light-hearted illustrations.”
Your website and your Instagram pages act as your online portfolios: how careful are you in terms of curating these pages and how do you decide what work makes the cut?
“I like to think of Instagram as a visual blog. I post all my personal work on Instagram. I don’t think too much about whether certain posts receive more likes than others. However, I do place my most liked/popular illustrations towards the top of my portfolio website.”
How do you print your work for personal use or to show people? And have you used Officeworks to print your work during your student days or since? (if so, tell us about why and when).
“I have not yet started to print my illustrations for show or sale, however I really would like to in the near future. I used Officeworks printing heaps at university as a student. I used to print all my A3 colour process journals at Officeworks, as I found their printing to be reasonably priced and of good quality.”
You have a huge number of Instagram followers. Has this helped you in terms of getting work and showcasing your work in general?
“Instagram has helped me get work, where a lot of my early clients discovered me through my Instagram account. Instagram has definitely assisted in showcasing my work. It has allowed me to gain greater exposure, build a wide-reaching audience, and create an online presence.”
You can see more of Fionna Fernandes and her work over on her website and Instagram page.
It’s crunch time for Aussie students, so hit up Officeworks for all your printing, binding and laminating needs for those all-important assignments. Scan, copy and print out pages of notes to help study for those exams. Officeworks’ easy online ordering, extended trading hours and lowest prices means that you’ll spend less money on uni essentials and more time making your work stand out.
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