“I first learned to draw than to write. I see with both eyes, but I prefer the left one to put to work the right hemisphere.”
El Grand Chamaco is an illustrator and multidisciplinary artist from central Mexico. Born in 82, Chamaco has found his forte in 3D character design.
From a young age he has taken interest in drawing and creating things. As an orphan, Chamaco’s childhood and adolescence was spent pursuing his artistic talents with his grandfather. Chamaco has said that the Internet is a relatively new concept in his town and that up until a few years ago, only television had existed. Due to this, he had only cartoons to draw inspiration from.
Sidetracking his career working as a waiter and an attendant in a grocery store, he decided to travel the world to find mentors and references that would help him form his true art and identity and voice as a creator.
At the age of 25, he returned to his home town and opened up a small school of illustration and painting, looking to share his knowledge. The school failed. Frustrated by his communities lack of interest in art, he turned away from society and built a workshop in a cottage, where he spent many years studying and perfecting his style.
After 3 years and the arrival of Internet to his town, Grand Chamaco began to exploit his talent, utilising social media and finally debut his art to the world.
Chamaco’s characters are bright, colourful, 3D with shines and highlights, like digitised play dough with a pop aesthetic, exploring Mexican culture such as skulls and beans.
Chamaco incorporates elements of a ‘bean’ into his artwork
“I took the shape of the bean as a type of figure to use in the features of my characters. I started with the bean’s silhouette as the fundamental shape. I thought it was a very representative shape of a Mexican aesthetics, and so I included it in my work; along with the bright colours.”
Looking through his artwork and portfolio was fascinating. Chamaco’s style is so fresh and innovative, distinct, surreal, out there – all these elements combined and the end product is one of a true visionary. I respect this artist and would recommend having a look through his behance portfolio.
Chamaco’s most recent project ‘Se dibujan tuits’ ‘tweets are drawn’ envisions a way to combine social media with his drawings. He chose tweets that piqued his interest, drew them and shared them with his followers. Chamaco spends anytime between 1-4 hours on these spontaneous illustrations. You can check it out here.
El Grand Chamaco is a great example of an artist who persisted. Chamaco is his own inspiration. In his life, he had ‘failed’ several times at starting his career as an artist. Ultimately, this inspired him to work on his art first and the rest followed.
“When you see something that captivates you and makes you ask, “who did this?” it’s because the art moved you. I suppose it’s just an instant smile, but that is something important in life.”
add him on snapchat grand_chamaco