There is a field of illustration in which the aim is to bring to light characters and environments that will tell us a long story. The main feature is imagination, and a compact mechanism to create never before seen characters and situations.

This is what young French illustrator Vincent Gallut has plenty of. This new genius with a pen graduated only a year ago from the George Melies Animation School of Paris and is already working for a major entertainment company, Toonbox Entertainment, in Canada.

He prefers to call himself a conceptual artist in this world of animation, and also writes his own stories and illustrations and hopes to one day make his own films. Taking a look at his portfolio, it’s clear to see he’s on the right track.

Vincent Gallut.self-portrait.

“My work is primarily focused on memories and nostalgia, I loved my childhood and I have many images, scents and sounds in my head that reminds me of it. However, I’m not only talking about happiness, I like to express sadness fear or disgust, I think kids needs to experience those feelings in a theater and not only this happy slimy feeling. I also like to work on the storytelling, to develop my characters and what they can tell”, he said.

With a notable influence from the 1980s and films such as The Thing, Alien, Akira, photographers such as Bresson, Doisneau, Effleston, illustrators as Alisa Yufa, Chris Robinson and Ismail, Vincent is eager to make his own films. “I want to become the best storyteller or scriptwriter, and I’m fully committed to my work to achieve this,” says the artist.

As time goes on, he is increasingly committed to improving his style, giving animated form to feelings and developing the skills that he has already been making public on his blogs for the past 14 years.

This creative evolution has led him to have perfect knowledge of his style, his doubts, his fears… “Graphically speaking my style is “static” and “flat” I think , I’m very bad at drawing dynamic poses anyway! I’m focusing a little bit more on my character’s faces and a little bit less on the background haha… although it depends if the background has something to bring or not. I also like to play with textures, lighting and composition, since my style is pretty classic I’m trying my best to be the most creative on those three aspects”, said.

Through his use of colour Vincent emphasises his own personal preferences, rather than following the style of animated films. “In terms of colors it’s always changing but I’m just trying to avoid the animation movies’ style, I like to play with desaturated colors and a bright yellow these days but it’s gonna change soon. Sometimes I’m designing cartoony designs sometimes it’s more realistic depending on what I’m focusing on.

It’s sad but I’m not drawing that much lately and I’m not drawing with a sheet of paper and a pencil neither… so far I’m just using my Cintiq companion in my bed haha. Designing speaking I’m pretty old school, I assume I’m very influenced by Milt Kahl, Teddy Newton, Shannon Tindle, Shane Prigmore, Joe Moshier, Tony Fucile, Tim Burton, Daniel Lopez Muñ oz and Matte Nolte”, he said.

It is also fascinating to know that Vincent uses music to do his work, which he describes as a way to add extra motivation. This helps him to approach the work from the initial concept in his head. “Usually, before working on my illustration and after having the rough concept in my mind, I would go on pinterest to look at old photographies trying to get a mood a composition a lighting, then I’m trying my best to be the more authentic, I can to stick to the feeling. I had in mind and trying my best to be the most creative I can. But it always start with music… always”, he said.

But not everything has been so easy, and he has also been beset by doubt, such as when he had his first experience as a designer working for a company. “I prefer to work for my owns design , my first experience as a character designer was really dificult because I don’t get the inspiration as easily as for my own work, I have to fit a certain kind of style and being very fast, unfortunately my work really depends if I feel good or not on a project. I need more experience I guess… but I eager to go full time freelance artist as soon as I can”, said.

In any case, as an artist, cartoonist, storyteller, writer… Vincent has a spectacular background and one day will surprise us with a great film touched with his own personal style.

Fotos: Vincent Gallut

This article is also available in Español