Giselle Gonzalez – Art Walk Like An Egyptian

_MG_7951This month’s art exhibit at OTTO is from a skilled Illustrator named Giselle Gonzalez. It will be the second consecutive time showing her collection, Art Walk Like An Egyptian, but it’s still her first solo exhibit ever!  All pieces are drawn on papyrus with Egyptian symbols, patterns, and characters. Bright colors like hot pink juxtapose the color schemes of traditional Egyptian art. This particular artist has an entrepreneurial streak as Gonzalez operates her own online store that caters to women’s vintage clothing. Her prices range low to high and the clothes spanning across a a few eras are in good condition. In addition, Gonzalez has began working with jewelry designer, Tarina Tarantino.

What inspired the theme of your current series at OTTO, Walk Like An Egyptian, which features colorful illustrations on framed papyrus?

I have always been interested in the narratives created in Egyptian Art. I also wanted to focus on the dynamics of women in Ancient Egyptian society. There are definitely elements of play on their roles, religion, and fashion sensibilities in the series.

What is your creative process when producing work? Do you prefer working with traditional or digital mediums? What software do you work with?

My creative process usually begins when I find some inspiration, whether from film, design, nature, etc., and begin fleshing out ideas through sketches. Although I am very familiar with various digital
software programs, I’m very drawn (no pun intended) to the tangibility of pencil and paper. Sometimes the direction of the pieces do end up as digital art, but they will always start as sketches.

You seem to be successful at selling vintage women's clothing through your Etsy store: Golden Afternoon. Your men's line, Jack Rabbit Vintage, had no listings however. What kind of niche, or time frame, are you aiming for with that line?

Fashion has always been a very important aspect in my inspirations and my life. I’ve always had an appreciation for classic, sophisticated and fun designs. The pieces I sell on Golden Afternoon I think represent that. I’m looking to have the same elements when I re-launch Jack Rabbit Vintage in the next month or so.

You went to school at the Art Institute of California - Los Angeles. Initially when you went to school there was it to work in fashion, art, or both?

I received my BS in Media Arts and Animation so most of my classes involved character design, or environmental design, as well as the various structure of animation. Although I didn’t study fashion, a_MG_7955gain it’s always been an inspiration for me.

How long have you been working as an illustrator? When did you decide that it was something you wanted to do?

The initial idea to become an illustrator I think had always been a dream of mine since I was really young. I believe it was really reinforced while I was in school. In many ways like an animator you’re
able to create a narrative and project ideas through your work. At the time I also had some professors who discouraged the idea telling me it would be really hard to be an illustrator. Working as a
successful illustrator for an amazing  fashion company and proving them wrong is a nice little cherry on top.

You choose interesting 'canvases' to paint on: papyrus, guitars, boat paddles. What's the most interesting thing that you've painted on?

This probably comes from my inner child who would draw on absolutely anything I could get my hands on. I love the idea of placing art in unexpected places. I think sometimes it gives the viewer a new appreciation for the object.  There are too many “canvases” but I would say the guitars were pretty interesting to paint on.

Have you ever considered doing animations, graphic novels, children's books, etc?

There are so many projects and ideas that I do want to work on in terms of animation and children’s books. Right now I am in the initial stages of collaborating on a children’s book so that’s really

Any other upcoming shows that you'd like to get the word out about?

I am in talks with a few galleries right now. I would really encourage anyone interested to follow me on my blog or my facebook page to get the latest information on upcoming shows:

Giselle Gonzalez’s Facebook:
Her Blog:

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