Interview with - The Art World in Children's Literature

Y: Tell us a little about yourself and your work, your artistic style and chosen medium: anything about your art that you feel is important. 

F: Hello! My name is Florencia and I live in Brescia. You can find me on Instagram as ""; I recently changed account, for the Bologna Children's Book Fair, wanting to emphasise my new found dedication to children's illustration. 

You could say that my artistic style reflects my personality rather closely! I consider it to be very cosy, calming and almost 'soft', it has developed a lot over the years and I can say that nowadays it makes it easier for young children to approach art. I like that it manages to convey the emotions of the characters, through the subtlety of their expressions and the vividness of the illustrated feelings. My intention is to always tell a story, and I think the use of colour and light to build atmosphere is one of the most effective ways to create the narrative; by adding different undertones and elements you can achieve quite wonderful results. I must admit that anatomy and perspective are not my forte, but I am very happy with where I am at the moment! For example, one of my most popular illustrations with publishers depicts a girl cooking jam, and I have been told many times how effective it is at conveying a very enveloping environment and feelings.

As for technicalities, however, my most used medium is digital, with gouache and pencil techniques.  


Y: What prompted you to enter the world of digital art? How did you start your artistic journey? Also, what is the art scene like in the area where you live, or where you come from?

F: Until seventh grade I was absolutely terrible at drawing! I got hooked on the field after I came across an edit of the manga "electroshock daisy"; I started reading it and saw how much a certain expression of the main character had struck me. I decided to redraw the scene, and from there I got very close to the universe of manga and the world of art in general.

The following year I asked my father to buy a scanner so that I could scan the drawings and colour them in Photoshop, but he took the next step and directly gifted me a graphics tablet. Basically, I started with digital from the very beginning! As I grew up, I continued drawing and the desire to be a cartoonist in the future was born. 

To be honest, I started to enter the world of concept art following some considerations by my parents; they thought it would be rather difficult to find work in the world of manga in Italy. Gradually, however, I realised that the Concept Art environment was not for me: I considered it quite impersonal. Unfortunately, I have had experiences in the field where most of the professionals in charge tended to be rather negative and not too positive about the future. I prefer a different kind of environment, I appreciate teamwork and the ability to send a message through the illustrations I create.

Regarding the art scene in the area where I live, I feel I must make a premise. I am originally from Argentina and the art career in my family has always been very well regarded! My ancestors include a sculptor and a painter who lived lives full of art, poetry and pride. My parents both worked in similar fields: my mother was a book publisher and a journalist, and my father a graphic designer, they always had a lot of connections with other professionals in the environment. Having said that, the situation is not exactly like that throughout Argentina as a whole: unfortunately, artistic careers are seen in the same way as here in Italy: they are never anything serious unless you work in 'modern' fields, such as photography, teaching or publishing.


Y: Tell us about your course of study. Did you study something specifically related to art or did your interest stem from something else? At what level would you consider yourself right now? 

F: I attended an art school, specialising in visual arts and multimedia. During my time at school I also had the opportunity to do an internship as a photographer for a trade fair! 

I then moved to Japan for a month, attending a manga course; to continue my studies, once back in Italy I enrolled at the European Manga Academy in Tuscany. After finishing the Academy I took a Master's degree in Concept Art at the Big Rock school in Veneto, unfortunately during the pandemic period.

As for the level I consider myself at right now, I can say that I define myself at an 'Intermediate' point, aiming for the professional; I think I have all the basics, I understand the environment and what is required, but I think I need more examples of how the professional world completely works.


Y: Art is a challenging, yet extremely satisfying field. What impact has it had on your life so far?

F: As long as I was studying, art had always had a positive impact on my life, both within and outside of education. For example, playing Dungeons & Dragons used to motivate me a lot to create and draw the characters and scenes born during the game. Unfortunately, the moment I entered the professional environment the situation changed: everything became much more stifling, I felt bad because I knew I had to draw more and more, but I couldn't do it, thus falling into a vicious circle of guilt and responsibility. Fortunately, I am in a better situation now, drawing makes me feel good and I can see the positive side of the creative process again. I realised how crucial it is to find a balance, and above all, how important it is to have examples to follow, even when dealing with negative experiences. During one of the heaviest periods I went through, I came across the Patreon of two artists that I follow and admire a lot, and I must say that reading about their backgrounds and their methods to get better helped me get back on my feet and move forward.


Y: Does your art allow you to support yourself financially? If not, is that a goal you have or not?

F: Not really.

Let me explain, at the moment I work for a cooperative dedicated to cultural promotion in the literary sphere, I am often in close contact with children, I read to them and I do my best to ensure that they can approach the world of literature at their own pace and in their own way. It is a profession that I have been doing for relatively little time, last year I was getting by with some graphic design work, but it was more sporadic than anything else. I also had the opportunity to hone my video-editing skills for some occasional performances, but let's just say it was not my path.

This year I had the opportunity to attend the Bologna Children's Book Fair, where I had the chance to talk to publishers and managers in the field; they even told me that I would be ready to illustrate a children's book!

So, getting back to the question, I am forced to say that right now I am not in a position to live only from my art. I think it is quite difficult to fully enter the environment, and because of the numerous competitors, it is even more difficult to find work. You have to be in the right place at the right time.

In the future I hope to reach the point where I can work mainly in the art environment, keeping the cooperative job as a side-job!


Y: What platforms do you use to promote your work? Do you think they need to be fixed and improved in any way? Do you think a new platform concerning only digital art could be useful?

F: I currently use Instagram, ArtStation and Behance; and none of the three actually work as they should. Instagram should give less importance to reels and make sure it actually facilitates creators; and as for ArtStation, it would be better if it removed the possibility to publish artwork generated by Artificial Intelligence, otherwise it is a lost case. Behance, on the other hand, as I use it mainly as a portfolio, I think can work as it is.

I recently listened to a podcast that talks exactly about this topic, and they said that when it comes to an eventual platform dedicated solely to digital art, you could say that its success depends a lot on its purpose. If it was used for the pure pleasure of sharing art it might work, otherwise not. Being populated and used by users who are mainly artists, there would be no way to establish any kind of working relationship.


Y: Have you ever had problems with copyright and its management? 

F: More or less. Years ago, I made a drawing from a photograph taken by two cosplayers and asked their permission. Some time later I was asked for permission to use the image within an edit, but the user credited only me and not the original cosplayers, so the whole comments section turned against me. Unfortunately I hadn't thought to point out who the original creators of the pose and composition were, so that's how the situation evolved.


Y: Have you ever had any experience with stolen art? How did you deal with the situation? On the same wavelength, did it ever happen to you that someone reposted your work and passed it off as their own? If you came into contact with this person, how did you deal with it?

F: Fortunately, I don't have much experience in this area. I have never had a drawing stolen and no one has ever copied me, to my knowledge. I went through a period of panic where I would put my signatures everywhere, I was terrified that some of my drawings would end up on one of those profiles that reposted random fanart, writing 'artist unknown' and that was it. Also, I used to post a lot on Tumblr, and unfortunately it's a bit complex to visually understand who the original owner of the posts is, so it often happened that many people recognised my style and my work, but without knowing my name.


Y: What is your opinion on NFTs and their impact on the digital art world? Do you support the use of your art by Artificial Intelligences to enrich their database?

F: Let's say I have worked closely with the field, unbeknownst to me. Some time ago, I participated in a project organised by a third party, without being aware of its purpose. Basically, it was a creative project that was later supposed to participate in an NFT competition, we even won, but the moment I found out that what I produced would be used within that environment I decided to remove myself from the situation.


Y: What would you change about the current art scene if you could? What do you expect from the future of art?

F: I wish there were more resources to better understand Artificial Intelligence. I think it is essential to give clear explanations to new artists, and to explain to prominent people in the art world why AI is potentially bad for the environment. Unfortunately, the latter is already saturated with negativity and competition, this situation could be the straw that breaks the camel's back. Furthermore, it is crucial to give space to Mental Health Awareness, to remind artists to take care of themselves and convey some positivity; you cannot live thinking that if you are not a drawing machine you are not a 'real' artist. I think this change could happen as soon as the professionals, teachers and, let's say, the 'adults' in the industry realise the weight of their words on the minds of emerging artists. 

I would like to point out that AI, taken out of the situation mentioned, is not an "evil" tool. If it were trained and used ethically, it could truly revolutionise the art world, but for the better!



We would like to thank Flor very much for taking part in the interview with us, and hope that his words have reached you deep down! Always remember not to lose hope and to take care of your mental as well as your physical health.

If you have any questions regarding the Protection of Creativity, the Rights Chain team is at your disposal!


About the Author



Columnist, (He/Them)

Content Creator for cosplay, gaming and animation. With a degree in foreign languages and a great passion for Oriental culture, he writes about copyright to protect the work of artists and young minds. A cosplayer since 2015, Yako is an advocate of gender identity and the development of one's creativity through personal attitudes: be it role-playing, cosplay or writing.