Interview with Maria Imaginário
Tell us about how you got to where you are now?
I’m not one of those people who has a cliché story about always being good at drawing since I was a child. I’m not even good at it today. The hardest part of my work is exactly that: drawing. After drawing, when I’m painting... I’m in heaven. I think I always felt a bit at ease with creativity, but what always fascinated me in the creative world, what really makes me tick are colors. The different tones and being able to mess with them and scatter them, spread them – the endless possibilities to create the colors you want. That has always been incredible for me. I always had good grades at arts, But I never saw myself as a possible artist. I had those kid-like dreams: I wanted to be a ballerina, a florist, I wanted to have a farm with cows.
After high school, all the tests showed me I should choose arts, but I couldn’t really understand how that could be possible, so I chose humanities and languages instead. Of course, this was a mistake. So after I realized that, I chose arts. I went to study Illustration and Comic Book design at Arco and slowly I started getting recognition and some commercial work.
At this moment, I have an identifiable author’s work. When someone approaches me, it’s because they want me, Maria Imaginário, and not a mere executant without identity.
Do you have a Framework for your Creative process?
The whole romantic myth that the artist or any creative person is troubled and lonely, living exclusively with his thoughts, melancholic – it’s just not real. I feel like it’s important to say that the creative process incudes other people. I ask other’s opinions regularly.
Mostly, though, the creative process is work. It’s spending hours looking at a blank page, thinking. Sometimes that happens to me – I will be staring at the page for at least one hour.
For me, it’s more a question of how I am going to take an idea and materialize it. The ideas are always there, because they come from my life, they are an expression of the thoughts and feelings I have about my life experiences.
What made you accept the invitation to work with Monarte?
I decided to work with a fashion brand – which is something I don’t normally associate with – because I think Monarte has so much potential to grow in Portugal. I feel like it’s so important to have brands which bet on Portuguese artists and are outside of the box instead of more of the same.
Monarte Piece: "Spread Love"
The heart, a character with a strong presence in Maria Imaginário’s pieces of art, symbolizes one of the purest and most honest feelings that exist: Love. By portraying the heart in such a joyful and romantic fashion, the artist intends to spread love and happiness wherever it goes.