Fanciful Illustrations of Mickael ‘Patiño’ Brana

Mickael Brana aka Patiño (b.1990) is a freelance illustrator and artist from France. He’s active in creating both rich and detailed illustrations and fine art using conventional and digital means. Bizarre creatures, strange characters, cute and crazy animals and monsters inhabit in his impossible worlds. I had a short discussion with Patiño to find out about himself and his art:

Please tell us about yourself:

Hi! I’m Mickael Brana aka Patiño, a 25-year-old French man who is just starting out as a freelance illustrator and artist.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (2)How did you get into art/illustration? Did you always want to become an artist?

No, when I was a child and a teenager I wasn’t interested at all about art. I preferred to ride my skate with my friends!

I started pretty lately, I was already 20-years-old (with a degree in business) when I really discovered art, graphic design and illustration.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (3)Do you have an artist statement?

No I don’t. I don’t really know and care about it to be honest. I prefer to care about my work !

The nature of your illustration and art works are quite different. Why is there such a variance between these two practices?

Yes, they are quite different. My illustrations are funnier whereas my art works are more melancholic. But I always draw figurative things. Maybe my art works are more focused on the human conditions and human psychology.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (4)I like to draw these two different things because they are two parts of my personality. And I’m also really inspired by funny illustrators as well as very expressive painters. So I try to do both.

Your work is full of humor in form and content. How seriously do you do your work? How did your illustration style evolve?

Aha! I do my work very seriously! I think it’s the only way if you want to make a living out of it.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (5)Every time I discover new things that I like, I try to put it in my work. So my style is always evolving and I’m always experimenting new things.

For example, ultimately I was inspired by naive illustrations (which came around 50’s) but also by different kind of ‘Primitive’ art. So if you look my work closely, you can see these two different inspirations.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (6)Most of your work involves rich detailing and complexity. How much time does it take you to finish a work on average?

If you speak about my black and white drawings with rotring, yes, they have a lot of detail!

For an A3 size sheet, it’s about 30-35 hours… It’s hard work!

Mickael Brana Patiño art (7)How do you get into creative mode? What in your opinion makes a perfect illustration?

It’s a difficult question. I thing a perfect illustration needs to have both form and content. I mean it needs to be aesthetic, beautiful and grab the attention of the viewers. But it also needs to convey a message and solve a specific problem. And in my opinion, it also needs to have a really personal style and vision (not be trendy).

Mickael Brana Patiño art (8)Tell me about the art supplies/equipment you use at work. Do you sometimes do your entire work on digital devices?

I use different things : rotring, acrylic, watercolor, pencil, Posca, Photoshop and Illustrator.

I never do the drawing directly on the computer. I always start with a pencil sketch, and if I want to digitalize it I scan it and then I can draw in Illustrator and finish in Photoshop.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (9)Do you have a favorite work or a project having a great story behind?

It’s not my favorite work but last summer I worked on a big B&W drawing (100cm X 80cm) for a collective exhibition. I spent around 200 hours on it (almost the two months of summer) and it was really hard. I was working in my garage (which is not the best place to work) and had various troubles finishing it, but finally I did it on time!

Mickael Brana Patiño art (10)Tell us about your achievements, awards, clients, publications, etc.

My favorite achievements right now it’s a little book with my sketches from my sketchbook which has been published by an independent Spanish editorial.

It’s something I always wanted to do so I was happy when they made me an offer.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (11)What are your future plans/projects, ambitions, aspirations etc.?

For the moment I want to find nice clients and inspiring projects to work for. I also have a lot of ideas for personal projects like doing a new series of melancholic drawings/paintings or mix my illustration with photos.

On the long term my main ambition is to mix my illustration style and my art style into unique and coherent works.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (12)Please share your influences and favorite stuff: artists, quotes, book, films, music etc.

There’s a lot to share🙂

Just to name a few artists : Goya, EL Bosco, Leonardo Da Vinci, Daumier, Modigliani, Magritte, Dali, Picasso, JJ Grandville, Pat Perry, Jim Flora, Steve Simpson, The Dulk, Jeanspezial, Os Gemeos, Michael Sieben, and many others.

Mickael Brana Patiño art (13)I’m a HUGE fan of music. I like to discover new stuff all the time. To name a few: Pink Floyd, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Clapton, Santana, Nina Simone, Jefferson Airplane, Bowie, Lou Reed , Can, Manu Chao … But I also listen a lot of Hip Hop, Blues, Reggae, Ambient, World Music, Rumba Flamenca, Funk, Soul, Trip Hop, Krautrock, etc.

I have a really bad memory for the movie and book that I watch and read. The last movie that I saw and really liked was ‘The Holy Mountain’ by Jodorowski. It’s weird but I like his universe!

Mickael Brana Patiño art (14)And the last book that made an impact on me was ‘The Power Of Now’ by Eckhart Tolle.

Something to say to our readers or aspiring illustrators or artists:

As an aspiring illustrator and artist myself I can’t really give advice! The only thing that I can say is “Follow your intuition and have fun”!

Mickael Brana Patiño art (1) Mickael Brana Patiño art (15)All images © Mickael ‘Patiño’ Brana : Website | Twitter | Facebook

About Nishant Mishra

Nishant studied art history and literature at the university during 1990s. He works as a translator in New Delhi, India and likes to read about arts, photography, films, life-lessons and Zen.

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