Instagram: @camissao Twitter: @camissaoLS Society6: www.society6.com/camissao Website: www.camille-ls.com
1. What's your story? Where are you from?Hey, I'm Camille, I'm a graphic designer and illustrator based in Birmingham (UK). I grew up in Brittany which is a region in the North West of France.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.I like to keep things simple and I reckon I have a pretty minimalist style. I like illustrating people a lot, but mainly women (I find them easier to draw, maybe because I'm one which means I'm more familiar with women's aesthetics). I tend to have a surreal setting which was either inspired by something I dreamt of, a song I listened to, a pun, an idiom etc...
3. What is your favourite medium and why?You won't be able to separate me from my graphic tablet! I like digital for several reasons, but the main being that I tend to be like those characters in comedies- when they try to draw or write down something and just crumpling up the paper because they're not happy with what they've done and they end up being drowned in a pile of papers. I don't like wasting. Although, I do love a good sketchbook and a pen and pencil.
4. What is your artistic process like?When I get an idea I always write it down. It is very important, ideas come and go and it can be really hard to remember them once you forget them and it can be very frustrating. If I'm sure about an idea I usually make the illustration as soon as I'm free. If I have a doubt about it, I just leave it "on the side" for a few days and usually, the solution pops up on its own. And if I don't have any inspiration I usually just sketch whatever I can see or whatever I find interesting. You can't just always wait for inspiration to come on its own, and being in the process of making can definitely help when you have the "blank page" syndrome.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?It's a mix of lots of things. I think the upbringing definitely plays a role. I grew up in the countryside and we would watch the stars a lot at night, there was also a lot of nature around and I think it helps with developing creativity as you invent your own stories. I also get inspired by people a lot (hence lots of portraits). There are a lot of artists that I admire, but I'm not sure I really include them in my work if that makes sense? I really love Van Gogh or Klimt but I've never thought about using their techniques, maybe I should give it a try one time!
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?I've always had an interest in art. When I couldn't use a pencil because I was too little I would ask my mum to draw for me, and when I got a bit older I started drawing. It's just a huge part of my life now and I enjoy art in a lot of different forms (music, cinema, literature, video games). I think it's what makes me happy, plain and simple! I'm not sure if art made me observant, or if I started enjoying art because I was observant. Either way, I think I'm quite attentive to small details that surround me, I look at light, colours and shapes a lot, and since I studied graphic design I look at fonts and the front of shops a lot as well. I tend to pause to admire a view for a while, I sometimes can't help but stare at people if they have an interesting physique or object, and then I get lost in my mind.
7. Where did you study?I studied a BA in graphic design at LISAA (which stands for "Institute of Applied Arts"), in Rennes (France), and I studied an MA in graphic design at London College of Communication.
8. Where do you see yourself in five years? Working in an agency?Working in a studio/agency or as a freelancer, depending on how things turn out. Both definitely are attractive for different reasons.
9. What about in ten?Hopefully having a good career, drowning in commissions haha! I hope that at this stage in my professional life I'm more stable, more mature about my work and that I'll have learned a lot more things. You never stop learning, I love that.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?That might sound selfish but first of all, to make me happy. I love making art, and it gives you such a feeling of satisfaction when you finish a piece. And if it makes other people happy or if they like it, it's a huge bonus for me!
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?This is tough. I just like well-prepared food in general, lots of vegetables and fresh products, lots of flavours. But if I really had to pick a type of food I'd say Japanese. My mum and I went to Japan a few years back and we could never get enough of the food! So tasty and very healthy.
12. Favourite book?I have interests in different genres and I love both fiction and non-fiction. But reading this question there's one book I can't get out of my head. I had this collection of tales from Andersen when I was a kid and I read it so many times. I remember when I finished it the first time, I was really disappointed that Disney "lied" about the story of the Little Mermaid. I didn't want to watch it after that!
13. Favourite genre of music?I don't really have any. There's a lot of genres that I like and I usually pick a song depending on the context or my mood, because when I listen to music I see things. I'll start seeing colours, shapes, and stories. If I'm having a walk on a sunny day I'll listen to some indie. If I need to think or concentrate I'll listen to classical music. If I'm cheery I'll put on some cheesy 80's song or rock'n'roll, etc...
14. What are your hobbies?Watching movies, if that counts, cooking. I also love traveling, there are so many places I want to visit.
15. If you weren't an artist, what would you be?I'd probably be an archeologist or paleontologist. I think that it was the dream of lots of kids, including me. Then I realised my life probably wouldn't be like Indiana Jones': he didn't ever make Indiana Jones and the application for research funding. But people pursuing these careers are amazing still in my eye. Just the fact that they recently discovered the first traces of life 300 million years prior to what we initially thought is awesome!