MEET SILICA, H+ CREATIVE EXTENDED ROSTER ARTIST - Q&A with H+
SILICA is a graphic designer based in Barcelona. His artwork aims to satisfy projects for music, cinema posters, digital art, and all graphic design in a colorful and glitchy fashion. Silica's main influences are sunset, landscapes, retro-futurism, sci-fi, creating worlds of futuristic situations and imagining new undiscovered landscapes.
H+: Tell us about the SILICA project. How and why did it get started?
SILICA: It started around 6 years ago at the same time I was producing music and starting a vinyl only record label. So I decided to design my own artworks for our own music releases. Other labels and artists on the music scene saw my artworks and they contacted me to create their own.
I created this AKA to focus on this kind of commissions and started to work with Electronic music artists and festivals meanwhile I was developing my own style and polishing my aesthetics and conceptual work.
H+: Prior to starting SILICA, what is your experience with graphic and visual design?
SILICA: Before SILICA I spent 8 years studying Graphic Design and Illustration, created a modern Art Decó Jewelry brand and produced music for 6 years as AGNOSIA mixing noise, ambient Shoegaze and Electronic music. Music drove me literally to expand my designs into this new AKA and to create a brand and design personality for myself.
H+: You studied graphic design in school, what was that like?
SILICA: It was a little art school in Barcelona that I choose because of their conservative way of thinking about design, I wanted to start from the roots and absorb all the techniques related to Graphic Design.
I learnt all about colors, compositions, concepts, typography but the most important thing I learnt was discipline and auto-criticism.
H+: Where does the name SILICA originate from?
SILICA: It came from my life-time passion for videogames. I remember when I was 13 years old and the Nintendo 64 came out I saw an VHS tape with a documentary about the first graphics in 3D and how they developed with that brand new SILICON GRAPHICS workstations. Now, you can see the influence on my name Silica Graphics :)
H+: You've worked with some world renowned musical acts like Alan Walker, What So Not, Lil Nas X. Share with us how it was working with them and some other clients you'd like to work with.
SILICA: All that projects were wonderful to be involved. This kind of big teams for big projects are very professional and kind with the workflow. I learn a lot of things and enjoyed a lot mixing my work with the work from artists like Aeforia to create something together.
For the first project I did with Mike Diva for Lil Nas X's Panini video I felt very impressed about how humanity is able to develop such a BIG project in remote, no faces, just Slack, briefings and good artists working together perfectly synchronized.
I will love to continue rising my career on that way and work for more artists like that ones, music industry has a lot of things to say hand by hand with Graphic design world.
H+: Out of all your client work, which one did you enjoy the most and why?
SILICA: Honestly I enjoy almost all my projects, every new project I learn a lot of things and I continue evolving my style. But the most joyful projects are my personal ones, no restrictions, and it's very nice to see your audience growing on Instagram and to feed them with your portfolio.
H+: Your work is a mixture of 2D, 3D, and graphic design. What is your process like from start to finish?
SILICA: Usually all starts with a word, a concept to develop, I visualize a rough idea in my head, imagining the colors, typefaces, shapes, compositions and then I start to work on technical part. I do some parts in Cinema 4D and DAZ studio (for the 3D) and some parts in Photoshop and Illustrator (for the 2D). Then I start a process to homogenize all the parts within the final artwork, that's the hardest part as I use to spent a lot of time in details.
H+: What are some of the major influences that inspire your art?
SILICA: Videogames, retro-futurism, cyberpunk, Shoegaze, the colors in sunsets and neon lights, Japan, Anime, computers, androids, humanity, our body and our soul, our future as humanity, new landscapes to discover, planets, space...
H+: Do you have any upcoming projects or projects you'd want to work on?
SILICA: I already sold a couple of NFT's early this year and this looks very interesting to work on, but I feel a little bit disappointed with the platforms and the way the treat the NFT's that doesn't reach a bid in 5 minutes. Literally your NFT get's lost and the platforms highlight every time the same artists, so there's no option for newcomers.
I use to have a lot of commission proposals and I accept only the ones I want to work in, I became pretty selective the last year.
As I said before I feel happy and comfortable on the music scene creating cover artworks and graphic design for videoclips, I would love to continue on that way but also I'll love to receive proposals for videogames and cinema, that will be a wonderful path to discover.
For more information on SILICA visit his artist page!