Who are you?
I’m Moni Yael Garcia, a full-time freelance designer and illustrator with a long list of passions (women’s issues, human rights, education, health, and the environment… and, of course, design and illustration). I believe that inspiration comes from the aggregate of experiences you give the world and what the world gives you. I associate smells with colors, tastes with numbers, and sounds with layouts. I enjoy cataloging my experiences through photography and poetry. And I’m constantly listening and absorbing new subject matter and changing my perceptions as fodder for creativity.
When not in front of a screen I make it a priority to divide my time between exercising, nursing plants, long hikes and do-it-yourself projects. Physical and hands-on activities really get my neurons firing and creative vibes flowing.
What are you working on?
I’m currently wrapping up a couple of rebranding projects, as well as writing up a few branding and illustrations proposals for new clients. Getting the ball rolling and establishing SOWs (Statments of Work) are extremely draining for me, but in the end, I prefer that my clients and I have a clear understanding of expectations. Peace of mind from both parties helps build trust.
When there’s a lull in client work I design products for my online shop and pursue other personal projects that vary in scope. From a one-off illustration using new techniques to designing a full concept site, I’m always looking for ways to challenge myself and improve. I even team up with my wonderful husband, a talented developer, under 200 Billion Galaxies to experiment with concepts and experiences that challenge our abilities.
Choose a favorite shot of yours. Why is it a favorite?
Earlier this year I was able to work on some editorial illustrations and though I enjoyed working on all of them this piece really stood out to me. I had recently purchased a Cintiq from Wacom and I knew I wanted to use it. I had failed miserably using some older tablet models a few years back so I was super nervous taking a chance on this investment. Because I had some time before the deadline I pushed myself to produce a more painterly looking piece. It took quite a bit of effort moving from my normal process, but I was able to achieve the desired vision with the assistance of this new tool. Honestly, I’m still working to increase my proficiency when using it but when I look at this piece I know it can be done.
Tell us about your setup. What tools did you use to create the shot (e.g. hardware, software, pens, paper, blowtorch)?
I actually have two desk setups in my home office. One is a sitting desk where I sketch and currently have my Cintiq. In the opposite corner (and not shown in the picture above) is my walking desk where both my iMac and display screen reside. I like having the ability to move and rotate my workspace because I’m prone to lower back pain if I stay in a sitting position for several hours.
As for the process involved to create my selected shot, I started with a few rough pencil sketches on computer paper. Refining the bunny’s form by tracing sketches over a portable lightbox. Once I had a good grasp of composition I took a picture of it with my iPhone and vectorized in Illustrator and added a few more foliage accents in the process. Finally, I exported the components into Photoshop. There I finalized color palette and created the painterly effect with some brushes and textures.
Choose a favorite shot from another Player. Why do you dig it?
There are so many talented creatives out there it’s extremely difficult not to feel both inspired and inadequate. But I’ve recently been following the illustration work of Jenny Yu, and I’m mesmerized. Her pieces are well thought out, vibrant, whimsical, and oddly nostalgic in particular this one. I didn’t grow up in a cityscape similar to this illustration or even own a kite fish, but the light and dynamic motion she is able to capture in what seems like a snapshot of a time or place are just so reminiscent of childhood. Being able to evoke those types of emotions in her audience is just masterful. Scroll through Jenny’s feed and you’ll feel like you’ve been transported into a new realm.