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Miguel Porlan


Duration: I’ve been working as a freelance illustrator since 2008.

Staff: Myself and my agent Ella Lupo from Purple Rain Illustrators.

Education: I studied illustration at Escola Massana in Barcelona, Spain, where I learned the difference between drawing and illustrating.

Cultural influences: Music, comics and midcentury graphics are my biggest influences, but I also love photography, cinema, literature and poetry.

Artistic influences: I consider European “clear line” and American midcentury cartoonists my drawing masters, including Saul Steinberg, Otto Soglow and Ever Meulen. Before discovering their work, I learned much from Spanish illustrators such as Arnal Ballester, Isidro Ferrer and Max, and other artists like Joan Brossa, Daniel Gil and Chema Madoz who used objects to make poetry.

First big break: My first assignment since being represented by Purple Rain was for The New Yorker. It was one of my lifelong dreams.

Work environment: My bedroom is also my studio. Day or night, I just need quiet so that I can listen to the radio or music while I draw.

Technique: In order of use: light table, paper, pencil, pen, scanner and Photoshop.

Philosophy: I believe in illustration as a means of communication. I need something to say before I have something to draw.