Caroline Selmes is an illustrator from Toulouse, France, currently residing in Barcelona, Spain. Her work focuses on press, publishing, advertising and personal projects. When not drawing she states “I’m traveling the world, dancing salsa, doing scuba-diving, making ceramics and drinking wine”.
1. What would you say is the most important theme in your work?
I always put a touch of humour in my drawings. I want people to smile when they see my work.
2. What’s most inspiring to your working process?
Thinking. I always start working thinking and writing my ideas in a notebook. I barely draw, I write a lot of words, thoughts, concepts… inspired by my daily life, dreams, or something I saw on internet…
3. Have you any strange talents that influence the work you produce or the way you produce it?
I’m very messy, so I’ve developed the ability of finding anything very fast in the mess! (files in my messy desktop, pencils in my messy drawer etc…)
4. Which artist of the past would you resurrect to collaborate with and why?
Aloys Zötl to understand him and how he used to work. We don’t know much about him, only he was a Austrian master dyer and he painted all his life a fantastic bestiary.
5. Do you think your work is understood or misinterpreted and why?
I think my work is not difficult to understand! I don’t pretend anything, it’s funny and colourful. Well, sometimes some clients ask me to draw “better” or to put to my characters “real human proportions”.
I only have one project who has been misinterpreted by some people. It’s a collaborative graphic humor blog, which I run with a writer, Laura Torné. The name of the project is “Death to the bad men” (Muerte a los hombres malos in Spanish), and we see in each cartoon, a man being killed by some feminine hands for some stupid reasons, and in a surrealistic way . It’s obviously ironic and offbeat, but some men didn’t get it and have insulted us and even threatened us.
6. If you could decorate one place in the world what would it be and how would you do it?
I like painting on windows, so I would really enjoy painting some huge windows, like a crystal palace or a greenhouse. I would paint something in white or pale color to keep the light coming through.
7. What to date has been your ‘cherry on the cake’ moment and what was it that got you there?
I was 18 (I’ve been studying Sciences in High School) but I wanted to make a career change and enter in an high demand Art course in France. 600 candidates for 15 places! There was a difficult competitive exam. I was thinking it would be impossible for me to enter but my father encouraged me and said something like that “15 places, that’s too many places, you only need one place”. I finally ranked at nº1 and I couldn’t believe it 😀
8. What we ask everyone! Does your artistic style influence your underwear?
In someway yes! As a lot of French girls, I’ve got a lot of underwear from the brand Princesse Tam Tam: I tend to choose the most original and colorful pieces of each collection.
More info www.carolineselmes.com