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Uma Joana joins Illo Agency!

This week we are welcoming Uma Joana to Illo Agency, all the way from sunny Portugal! 

Joana artwork plays with some wonderful colours, mixing textures within some flat vector artwork to give a variety to the contexts the work could be displayed on! We love the busy scenes that he has created but the contrasting development into the more child friendly pieces with his nephew as inspiration. Keep reading our Q&A session with her earlier this month ... 

Q: Welcome to the Agency Joana! Can we ask who you would consider as some of your favourite illustrators?

A: I love the work of way too many people - from close, super talented friends, to amazing illustrators and artists I have never met. 
One of the first names that instantly pops in my mind whenever I am asked this question is Isabelle Arsenalt. Her take on image composition, visual metaphors, text - usually handwritten - and the expressiveness yet amazingly delicate trait of her work, are qualties that I strive to achieve. 'Jane, the Fox and Me' and 'Cloth Lullaby' are my favourite illustrated books ever.
Another big inspiration is the Portuguese illustrator Susa Monteiro. her themes, the unexpected ways in which she uses colour, and the beautiful, incredibly expressive usage materials make up for extremely strong and yet deeply moving and poetic pieces.
Last but not least, the magnificent work of the wonderful Louise Bourgeois.

Q: Thank you - so how would you describe your style, in your own words ... 

A:  I am usually told that, in one word, my work is very "deliate" - and I think I'll have to agree on that. Although it isnt a conscious choice, it's the way I naturally compose and find visual solutions. To that, I would also add "Organic", as a good way to describe what I do.
I am very drawn to themes such as longing, melancholy, and abstract subjects - although I usually approach them with quite concrete shapes.

Q: A great explanation. So, when you're not illustrating, what do you get up to in your spare time?

A:  Pet time, with heavy cuddles with my cat, Mia.
I am also an avid plant mother, with my home having ay too many already but still not enough.
I -adore- books, so I usually also try to catch up on my reading during breaks. ('Doing sports' would also look really good as an answer to this question, but... maybe tomorrow - oh, I forgot to mention that procrastination is also one of my biggest hobbies. With -a-passion.)

Q: You can see that through your work. What is your favourite thing to illustrate?

A: Emotions, mental health issues and abstract concepts. I love trying to come up with a visual representation to things that cannot be seen.

Q: And finally, why did you want to sign with Illo?

A: I was drawn to the selection of artists Illo represents, and the fact that, being a small agency, the proximity between illustrator and agent would definately work in a much closer level. I haven't "met" many of my other colleagues here at Illo, but I am convinced we will all frown together and, together, become and small, illustrated family - each one with their individual approach to illustration.


Thank you to Joana for taking the time to give us a bit more of an insight into the artist behind the beauitful artwork. To work with Joana, check out some more of his work before getting in touch with one of our Illo-agents who can bring your project to life. 

at Illo Agency, we pride ourselves in representing a collation of global illustrators, distinctly diverse in creativity and uniquely celebrates by like-minded clients across a range of commercial markets.