Chris Fernandez: So, Mauricio, your art is truly breathtaking and has an instantly recognizable style. Where do you find your influences?
Mauricio Villarreal: Well there are a lot of amazing artists out there that I follow and try to learn from as much as I can. Stjepan Sejic, Riccardo Federici, Stanley Lau, Lu Dongjun to name a few. In terms of more traditional comics, I love the work of Jim Lee, Joe Madureira and Jorge Jimenez, they’re artists that I admire very much even though their styles are completely different.
CF: Tell me a little bit about how you approached the characters in Knights of the Golden Sun. What was your goal when visualizing the Archangels?
MV: For Knights, it was necessary to create their own visual language. I wanted them to look amazing, something that would do them justice, and reflect an ancient world full of powerful beings. I always try to play it out as a movie inside my head and then do everything possible to capture what I visualize. Obviously, this has resulted in it being a difficult comic to illustrate and more time consuming than I would like to, but I know it’s worth it. Knights has been an incredible part of my life that has helped me improve my craft and is always challenging me in new ways.
CF: What is your favorite part about the comics process and why?
MV: My favorite part about making comics is imagining the story and being a part of the world-building process. How will I tell the story visually? Visualizing the lighting, camera angles, anatomy, and things like that are fun for me. Doing my best to interpret what the writer is saying and how can I enhance the dialogue through art is also enjoyable.
CF: Tell me something about your life outside of work? Family? Pets? Other interests? What gets Mauricio out of bed in the morning?
MV: Well, I love art. I’ve always been passionate about music and painting (any kind of art really), thank God that today I can make a living from it. My purpose is to keep improving, there is so much I have to learn. The desire to improve and become a truly great artist is what gets me out of bed, so to speak. I love nature and animals. I live with two cats that I adore, they are my family. I also enjoy video games and simple stuff like walking around the city or just watching a good movie.
Graphic designer and illustrator. He’s a fan of all types of art, but especially painting and music. He’s also an autodidact with a passion for concept art, world-building, and detailed characters. Mauricio sees every day as a chance to learn and grow as an artist.