We are delighted to introduce you to a young illustrator of whom we have already published two books: Rugissement dans la nuit (2016) and Bien fait! (2017). While the first is particularly colourful, inspired by the colours of the Colombian rainforest, for her second picture book she opted for the soberness of black and white.
Paola De Narvaez divides her life between Brussels, Paris and Colombia. Having studied in textile design and graphic communication, she is as adept with a brush as she is with a graphics tablet. She uses black in combination with pure and vibrant colours.
The origin of Rugissement dans la nuit is a little unusual… Can you tell us more?
The story is based on something my father experienced in Colombia in the fifties. A wild cat came to eat the chickens of his village and one evening, he left with his friends to hunt it down… the ending is more tragic than in the book! I was inspired by the colours of Colombia for my illustrations.
For Bien fait!, you worked on a text by Jane Oshka. How did you immerse yourself in the story?
The story by Jane Oshka is rhythmic and full of sound. It was a real pleasure to do the illustration. I placed the action in a foreign landscape to take the readers on a journey, and the daring framing energizes the story. I was inspired by Japanese prints, Chinese illustrations, …
Which techniques did you use?
I use various techniques, depending on the story and how the texts make me feel. Lines are very important to me, but colour is too, I sometimes let myself be carried away by one or the other…
Thank you Paola!