We must not go too far to fill our eyes with wonder, often beautiful things are so close we could almost touch them. This is the case of the young and talented Federica Ubaldo, specialized in illustration for children and editorial illustration. It is easy to imagine her in her studio in Milan, to the drawing board intent to re-read the stories she illustrates through her style that almost goes beyond surreal. We see her as she gives life to Aesop’s talking animals or while she is intent on rocking with the tip of a pencil dormant trees of Barone Rampante (Baron in the Trees), outlining the obsession of Akhab, filling Noah’s ark of animals of fantastic shape. The space of her works is an elsewhere, geometries would be non-Euclidean, they want to escape the logic of reality to transport the viewer directly into a dream of paper and color. It almost seems that subjects choose their sizes.
Thus, the wolf of Little Red Riding Hood becomes so huge to fill all the house of her grandmother, perhaps already an huge belly ready to welcome another hearty meal, moles have holes in which a man can stick the whole head and anthropomorphic elk can use a car as skateboard. Ubaldo hatches determined and fades gently to create shadows and density, the precise lines, safe, almost harsh, are sweetened by the wise choice of colors. Neutral colors, from beige to gray backdrop to sudden explosions of hot orange, light cerulean blue, ultramarine blue. Hover versatility from using watercolors, acrylics and inks and easily switch to use of digital media, Illustrator, and Photoshop. It is a narrative dream that offers us this gifted illustrator, made of images deliberately childish, characters beyond of measure that seem to come from a work by Charles Thomson.
Federica makes it sound easy, illustration; almost something in which we could all test ourselves, and as someone once said, in this you can see the skill of an artist. The ability to give mute tales and stories to be read all at a glance, the immediacy in communicating moods, the great ability to synthesize stories she wants to tell us in clear images but at the same time go to intertwine in a dense web fairytale of references and lines, make it original artist to watch. Federica will grow again, as her creatures made of color and who knows how many other stories will come to life from her pencil.
Official website: www.federicaubaldo.com