Elevate Talks: Cristina Daura

Cristina Daura is a Barcelona-based illustrator and cartoonist with a strong personal style and a stunning color palette. She has done fanzines, comics, magazine covers, posters and illustrators for a wide variety of clients such as Tik Tok Comics, Pixelbox, The New York Times, Ted Ideas, El País and Joe Crepúsculo. She has also participated in the project La Ciudad en Viñetas, an initiative by CentroCentro, the Madrid’s cultural-museum center, in which every two months an author creates a sequential narrative mural about Madrid.

I am Cristina Daura, I was born and raised in Barcelona. I am an illustrator and I like sleeping in a very warm room every night.

I’ve studied fine arts but I left on my first year because it seemed too fake to me. Then, I switched to studying illustration at La Escola Massana.

Illustration for The New York Times Sunday Review about the love abuse on Instagram.

Until I turned 20 years old I didn’t think that I could choose illustration as a real professional path. In fact, I didn’t even know exactly what illustration was either. But I got to know other professionals who encouraged me to study and embrace illustration as a profession. Something similar happened to me with comics. I’ve spent my whole childhood reading comics with my father and my brother and I guess that helped too.

Well it depends on the status of the tasks I need to accomplish that day. Sometimes I need to sketch, sometimes I need to think new ideas (which I usually do sitting on the couch) and sometimes I have to spend a lot of time on the computer finishing illustrations. Now that I work from my house I try to leave at some point so that I don’t go completely nuts.

Illustration for the parties “Fuego” at the Barcelona night club Razzmatazz.

One of the things I like the most is the freedom I have while planning out my day and choosing how many hours to spend working on each project. I also appreciate a lot the relationship I get to have with art directors. The worst is perhaps pretty obvious: I am constantly asking for clients make their payments and it sometimes seems impossible. Sometimes I think I need a shotgun.

Poster for a fake Nick Cave concert in Barcelona.

7. Remarkable. I think they are crucial and that they can help you get out there and letting people know who you are and what you are working on. But you don’t need to be obsessed about social media or define yourself only by the amount of likes you’ve received on a certain post. It is important to keep that in mind.

It did some years ago. Right now I try hard not to let them get to me.

Hmm… I do not know, I think I can’t build a top 3 of my best works. I don’t like some of them (quite a few) and all the others seem good to me. I would say that La Ciudad en Viñetas was the first project in which I could exploit and show my own personal illustration style. It also helped me get some other really interesting jobs. I certainly give it a special recognition.

La Ciudad en Viñetas. Septiembre 2015.

Living in a city where there is passion and interest for comics helped me find a good group of friends and cartoonists (and earn money).

I have several files on the hard disk with images that I’ve found on the internet (specially on Tumblr), but now I’m also saving collections on Instagram with images that I like or find interesting. Photos, colors, designs, etc. But, apart from images, I use music to escape and get out of the illustrator’s block.

Poster for the music company Who’s Who from Ensenada, México/San Diego, California.

Oops … only one? I’d probably choose anyone who’s related to music, but I know this is a wide option.

Every project and commission that has ever come to me. Especially at the beginning of my career, working with either large or small publishers and large or small clients, was challenging to me. As time passed by, I’ve learnt to take things without having an anxiety attack. I try to take it easy.

Illustration for HoHe Luft magazine. To really know someone.

I’d like to be able to do more exhibitions and more personal projects.

I try not to think about this too much. It usually makes me feel a little distressed. As long as illustration keeps feeding me, I’ll be happy.

Movie: El Castillo Ambulante. It’s a classic but I never get sick of watching it.

Reality: RuPaul’s Drag Race. My friend Genie Espinosa discovered it years ago. It gives me life.

Album: music is too big to choose only one album but on 2017 my favourite one was Lorde’s Melodrama.

Instagram: @dicandrea’s stories.

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