Responses by André Ducci, illustrator
Background: This edition of The Adventures of Pinocchio is part of the Extraordinary Worlds Collection of children’s literature classics published through Instituto Mojo, or Mojo.org, a non-profit association. One of its programs includes translating literary works in the Public Domain, and editing and distributing them free of charge in a digital format. In addition to The Adventures of Pinocchio, I also illustrated other books like Alice’s Adventures, Anne of Green Gables, Oz, The Jungle Book and Treasure Island for this project.
Reasoning: The main objective for The Adventures of Pinocchio, and the other books in the same collection, was to make the illustrations as close as possible to the illustrations from the original text. I received a detailed briefing, so my main concern was to illustrate the scenes and the expressions of the characters in context.
Challenges: The colors were definitely a challenge. As this publication is part of a collection, the choice of colors is made with great care to maintain, distinguish, highlight, reinforce and make clear its identity, as well as create harmony with the other works. Ultimately, as the last option, we chose to use the colors of green, white and red, which coincidentally are the colors of Italy.
Favorite details: Illustrating Pinocchio, who has been a familiar character in my childhood through so many tales and points of view, was a great experience. As an artist, every story that reaches me helps fuel my illustrations and imagination. Being able to put these ideas into practice by participating in such a cool project, like this one by Instituto Mojo, makes me proud for sure.
Specific demands: In most of the drawings, I usually work with a few colors and one or two main characters, later developing the elements. For the cover of this edition, the briefing requested as many characters as possible in harmony with the main elements of the story. It was challenging to fit so many elements and limited number of colors.
Alternative approach: While I was illustrating this book, I had many doubts and, of course, many details needed to be redone. But the result is something that I was very proud of. At this moment, I wouldn’t change anything.