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Shimmer: Songs of Night was released from Spork, Clear Fork Publishing on October 17th. Set to poem, Shimmer gives words and pictures to a child’s thought when he or she hears the evening’s first cricket or looks up at the stars and wonders, “What’s up there?” Shimmer was the debut picture book from illustrator Carina Povarchik.
Tell me about yourself?
Hi, I’m Carina Povarchik, also known as Catru. I live in San Rafael, a small wine making town in the state of Mendoza, Argentina. I’m a former computers programmer, and a “half” self-taught illustrator. And I say that because I’ve been getting all the formation in Arts I can but is not like a cohesive one career thing. The most important progress in visual arts for me has been my Portraiture Drawing teacher and so far 4 years taking lessons. And then I’ve explored many areas in arts, watercolors, oils, acrylics, clay modelling, and children illustration. I also do online courses. There are some really nice ones out there. YouTube is also a nice place to listen to lots of interviews to amazing artists and illustrators. Besides that, I love chocolate, birds, cats and happy things.
Where did your inspiration come from for all the different angles of Shimmer?
Shimmer poems are so cute and whimsical themselves that I felt connected right away. And feeling connected makes me visualize things easier, it already boosts my inspiration. And then, I really have fun when illustrating. I imagine kids looking at the scene, I imagine what they would say about it. And according to that I may add details. So, for me, inspiration is something I get when my heart is happy and can play. It was a happy project to work on!
What are things that inspire you?
I’m mostly inspired by happy and silly. By nature. By deep feelings of beauty. By, definitely, good happy music. And the core of all my inspiration is what I call my kid power. The power to believe in everything. The power to change everything from what it is supposed to be. The fact that gravity could be different. Or that clouds could have rainbow colors. That’s the power kids have when they play. The power to imagine without adult limitations and known facts.
What mediums do you use?
Well, I love many mediums, but for children illustration I work digitally.
I must admit that my current digital style was born from a work I’ve been doing for 4/5 years now. When I started crafting handmade journals, I needed a way to have money and to, same time, express my creativity. So, I started doing those journals, hand painted also, with my own motifs, and went to crafts fairs to sell them. I’ve done so many of them that I did develop a personal children style with acrylics.
From that, I started to work digitally searching and finding that kind of style I had with real brushes and acrylics, but on my computer.
Is not the same, as every medium will guide you thru its magic, but it was born somehow on those handmade journals.
Besides that, I do love to paint with watercolors, work with pencils for portraiture and such things, on a more serious traditional arts path.
I also love sculpting in a tiny scale, and I use air dry clay or putty clay if it’s not a tiny figure I’m doing. My house is full with tools and materials haha.
Besides my inspiration that comes and goes, I do illustrate almost every day. My personal rule is, work on something and if I don’t want to work on that particular medium/artwork, then choose something else, but keep creating.
So, I usually have like days I work fully digitally, and then I just need to close all the computers and grab my watercolors for few days. Or perhaps I really need to spend my weekend painting a landscape with acrylics/oils. I need that rhythm of changing in between mediums and styles of mine. I’ve felt guilty sometimes of doing different kind of artworks, but in the end I figured out that was me and I needed it to be like that. So, it’s ok.
The question I start my day with is, what do you feel you wanna work on today? (Unless I have a deadline haha)