Illustration, Visual arts and Graphic Narrative

WHY (R) EVOLUTION? (3)

WHY (R) EVOLUTION?
Inertia and momentum in the boundaries of contemporary illustration.

Therefore Illustration during the last centuries and even faster today, had faced technological, cultural and economic crises in the past, and I know also that it survived: not only survived but eventually expanded (16). As result of this quick progression in the last 10 years, illustration for many disciplines has become the “connective tissue ” (17), allowing collaborative practices, the development of self-publishing and independent publishers, the transformation of the practice into something different than providing the reader with predictable images that merely echo the text (18). Also there are new fields and themes not usually covered by illustrators and as a result of the breakthrough of the internet as a communication tool around the turn of the millennium that functioned as a catalyst for this new breed of figurative design (19).

Illustration is even physically affecting the new design of cities, there is also not only a shift in street art moving from an underground-subculture and commissioned now as part of the commercial art process (20), but also there are new tendencies to use buildings as digital canvas, changing the urban spaces via smartphones, big screens, head-mounted displays which blend the physical with the virtual, business, urban planners, citizens and consumers (21). This amplifies the potential audience to almost all inhabitants in every city around the word if we consider also all the different portable devices.

To summarize, including all the shifting factors through history, if we project this scenario into a globalized world, where there is a democratization of art, culture and information, the “Evolution” as artistic response, is no longer effective enough as a rate of change for a creative adaptation with the social environment. Nowadays these conditions of creative practice and the circumstances of the social context are changing almost on a daily bases.

The previous creative inertia that reached the earlier generations of illustrators is not useful to satisfy a society at boiling point due to massive increase in communications and digital information. Faced with the question, Why (R) Evolution? The art “Revolution” today is as extensive as globalization and telecommunications are. However, illustrators have to be prepared to be at the forefront of this revolution as creative leaders and not just be waiting until the environment forces us to change to match the market and the audience, like the evolution of species to adapt to nature with its new environment. Our Practice must be revolutionary because it is an active and dynamic world and inertia has no place in illustration. We have to be in constant development, reinventing ourselves, innovating, developing creative projects to diverse audiences and genres, keeping in mind what the market requires and of course the demands of any commercial commission, but above all, keeping our own artistic voice and developing creative proposals on our own terms (11).

References

16. Freitas, Leo de. in Authorial Illustration from The Authorial Illustrator: 10 years of the
Falmouth Illustration Forum, ed. by Steve Braund, Mat Osmond and Catrin Morgan
(Penryn, Atlantic Press 2012) p. 21.
17. Desdemona McCannon,. in Editorialform Journal Of Illustration – Volumen 1 Number
1, ed by Desdemona McCannon (Bristol : Intellect, 2014) p. 3.
18. John Vernon Lord, in Under The Covers: Convergences in Illustration, Literature &
Design. fromThe Authorial Illustrator: 10 years of the Falmouth Illustration Forum. ed. by
Steve Braund, Mat Osmond and Catrin Morgan (Penryn, Atlantic Press 2012) p. 69.
19. Andrea Wan, “Picto Propets”. [ed.] Heng Khoo. Varoom!, 21(2013) (p. 10).
20. Emma Underhill, “Public Realm”. [ed.] John O´Reilly. Varoom!, 23 (2013) (p. 28).
21. John O´Reilly, “Buildings”. [ed.] Heng Khoo. Varoom!, 21(2013) (p.60).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

satisfy a society at boiling point due to massive increase in communications and digital information.

 

Faced with the question, Why (R) Evolution? The art “Revolution” today is as extensive as globalization and telecommunications are. However, illustrators have to be prepared to be at the forefront of this revolution as creative leaders and not just be waiting until the environment forces us to change to match the market and the audience, like the evolution of species to adapt to nature with its new environment.

 

Our Practice must be revolutionary because it is an active and dynamic world and inertia has no place in illustration. We have to be in constant development, reinventing ourselves, innovating, developing creative projects to diverse audiences and genres, keeping in  mind what the market requires and of course the demands of any  commercial commission, but above all, keeping our own artistic voice and developing creative proposals on our own terms (11).