Federico Gastaldi is an Italian Illustrator.
In 2013 he graduated from the IED of Turin (European Design Institute) with a BA in illustration.
From 2016 is represented worldwide by the American agency Salzman International.
His work has been recognized by The Society of Illustrators of New York, American Illustration, Communication Arts, 3x3, Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles, Creative Quartely, Lurzer’s Archive, Premio Illustri, Autori di Immagini.
He lives and work in Alessandria, Italy.
Partial Client List:
INterview with Federico Gastaldi:
How old were you when first realized you wanted to become an artist?
Actually I think I haven't realized it yet. It was a series of fortuitous events that led me to be where I am.
Do you still have any of your early artwork?
At my parents' house I still have all the drawings I did at the university. They can't wait for me to take them away but I always find a good excuse to postpone.
Have you studied art formally?
Yes, I have a BA in children's illustration.
Is there an artist whose work you admire? What is it about their artwork that intrigues you?
My favorite artist is Bo Bartlett. Even though he is a painter and he uses a completely different style from mine, his works always excite me. I can't explain exactly why, and maybe that's the reason I like it so much.
How did you arrive at your current style. What techniques or authors inspired you?
I believe that the research for the right style is a process that an illustrator carries out throughout his career. It is constantly influenced by the market, the external inputs, the personal tastes, etc. My style has changed a lot since I started, for sure, and it will probably continues to change.
What are the sources for your inspiration? Do you have a muse? Do you have a process you employ to generate ideas?
I think that the inspiration is pretty overrated in illustration. I don't see myself as an artist who has to find inspiration to make his own creations. I feel like I’m a craftsman who has to find the best way to satisfy the customer's needs. The starting point is always the message that the customer wants to convey and from that I try to build an image that does his job in the best possible way.
Do you have cultural references to which you gravitate?
I like the 90s imagery even if it doesn't reflect much in my work.
What upcoming projects are you working on?
I’m working on some children's books that will be released in the next few years.
How do you set up your job when you get a new contract?
After the client has sent me the brief, I start drawing very roughly all the ideas that come to my mind on my sketchbook. Then I deepen the concepts with a bit of iconographic research, I compose the images and prepare on my computer the official sketches to share with the client. From there on it's usually all downhill.
Can you describe your creative process?
I don't know how to explain it well. With some works it takes me days to find a good idea that works while sometimes I immediately find the perfect concept. Those rare times, when it happens, I run full of joy to my wife and that's when she regularly tells me "I don't like this one, I wouldn’t use it".
What tools do you use most in your work?
Apart from writing down my ideas on a sketchbook, I work digitally with a mac and a graphic tablet.
How do you re-charge when a difficult assignment nears the deadline?
I focus on when all the work will be delivered and I can enjoy some relaxation!
What is your favorite activity when you take a break from the studio?
For almost a year I have been managing the family farm in northern Italy with my cousin. So if I'm not in front of a computer drawing, it's easy to find myself on a tractor or in the middle of a field building a new chicken coop.
What would be your dream illustration assignment?
My dream would be to work on the new advertising campaign for John Deere or New Holland and get paid with a tractor instead of cash.