DMc: What inspires you as you begin a new project?
MP: When I start a new project I tend to read the story and try to get in, to know better who is living it. Going trough the web in search of pictures that can make me feel who I'm going to read. Visualize background, well it depends on where it is, if I have details from who give me the project or if it is a place of fantasy. Days scribbling here and there despairing myself, telling myself argh I will not survive this, then somehow it comes out by itself and flows.
DMc: Was there a person from your childhood who encouraged you to pursue your artistic talent?
MP: Well my parents helped and help me a lot, but one day years ago, I was in an office job and I met my still friend Cristiano Lissoni, somehow working together pushed me pursuing my goals.
DMc: What was the best piece of advice you received when you started your career as an illustrator?
MP: DRAW, DRAW, DRAW and fight and believe in what you are doing, else why are you doing it.
DMc: Who are some of your favorite children's illustrators?
MP: Well I sure have a lot, but I love Chriss Riddell, Tony DiTerlizzi and
DMc: Please describe your path to success in becoming an artist? Where there any particular obstacles that you needed to overcome?
MP: A path, oh well let me see, a path... mmm... draw, draw, draw, believe and promote yourself as much as you can, have ideas, never feel that you know all you need to know 'cause is not true, study the libraries, the books, the children’s and the parents. Obstacles mm... payment, here in Italy sometimes it's a bit hard, oh and well the lack of planning you cannot at start especially plan so much what project to follow or not. But the nice part is that, is true sometimes I work around the day, but yet again one day there is the sun, fresh air and you can decide to go out and work later or bring your work with you and smell the air.
DMc: Please describe the collaboration involved between you, the publisher, and the author.
MP: Collaboration, wow yes, I work with different hours also so is not always so simple, but I like a lot collaboration, 'cause also if I get angry sometimes or I cannot really understand where to some talking brings, I know at the end the all is to have a better project and that's what gave me the possibility to improve myself. If I look at 3 years ago, I surely can see the difference and I feel I can do better, but a real good part is 'cause I have the possibility to work with people who believes in their work.
Learn more about Manuela’s colorful world at: http://www.piedenero.com/