Paula Garcia

Paula Garcia is an Illustrator, Animator, and Co-founder of Bocardo Multimedia. Paula talks us through her typical workday and the best and worst parts of illustrating and animating. We discuss the design culture in Finland, and Paula shares some tips on developing your style and how she found hers.

Where did you study and what were some of your first jobs?

I studied at Bangkok University International in Bangkok, Thailand where I majored in Computer Graphics and Multimedia. After four years, I acquired my Bachelor’s degree and decided to move to Finland with my boyfriend - who graduated the same time with me from the same major. After moving to Helsinki, I worked briefly as a freelance graphic designer for an advertising agency before starting my own company.

Did you have a plan for graduation and what actually happened?

Initially, my plan was to find a graphic design job in Helsinki and I did. After a couple of months, a colleague of my boyfriend’s mom hired me and my boyfriend for a project. He asked us to do a short animated introduction for his medical campaign which will be shown in a medical conference in Barcelona. He also flew us there and asked us to film some of the biggest medical professionals for interviews, which was pretty intimidating considering that was the first time we did such a huge project like that, but in the end, everything went fine and everyone was pleased with the outcome. Shortly after that gig, we established our own company in January 2017 where we did more graphic design work, animation, and filming within the medical field.

Design work by Paula Garcia The Design Kids interviews Paula Garcia work-2

Give us the elevator pitch on what you do.

I’m an illustrator and animator and I work as a freelancer through the company that I co-founded, Bocardo Multimedia, with my boyfriend two years ago, at first I was doing a lot of graphic design work amongst other things, from making animated promo ads for social media campaigns to filming and editing lectures. Now, I just focus on illustration and animation although I still do some graphic design work from time to time for my family’s business.

What are some of the best and worst parts of your job, day-to-day?

The best part about illustration is actually illustrating - from making the initial sketch, outlines, colouring - but the worst part of it, in my opinion, is making the colours work as a whole. It really takes more than just picking colours from a colour-generating website, but those sites are a tremendous help to begin your sketch with. In animating, the best part is EVERYTHING, except organizing files inside AfterEffects, which is the worst.

Design work by Paula Garcia The Design Kids interviews Paula Garcia work-4
Design work by Paula Garcia The Design Kids interviews Paula Garcia work-4

Another thing that I learned is to step back, take a break from doing your work once in a while so you can come back with fresh eyes and see what else you can improve.

How does the local culture of where you live affect your design work and getting clients?

One thing that I love about living in Finland is that Finnish people value design so much, that they implement it in their lives in every way possible. Every household in Finland pretty much has Iittala tableware, Marimekko fabrics, and of course, the iconic orange scissors from Fiskars. Every single aspect of the city has design elements in it, so it’s obvious that people know what they like to see and also what the design standard here is like. So you have to have a keen eye on design and how you can implement current trends in your work, or use it in a way that it fits your audience, you have to know what’s going to work, and most of all, to make your work stand out amongst all the other good designs everywhere.

How did you develop your style as an illustrator and what tips would you have for others?

Ever since I was in uni, I have been following a lot of illustrators and designers and using their styles as a reference to develop my own style. I collected and saved (and I still do!) a lot of illustrations and designs that I like from Behance and Pinterest and look through them for reference for colours, textures, and composition whenever I’d start a new project. Even to this day, I am still honing my style both in illustration and animation, so don’t feel bad if you haven’t found your style yet, it takes time and a lot of practice. Another thing that I learned is to step back, take a break from doing your work once in a while so you can come back with fresh eyes and see what else you can improve.

Design work by Paula Garcia The Design Kids interviews Paula Garcia work-6
Design work by Paula Garcia The Design Kids interviews Paula Garcia work-6

Where to find Paula Garcia online.

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