• Caitlin Kennedy

Elisa Bianchino

Tell us about your absolutely stunning cover, Elisa.

Well the symbol of Val d’Isère is the Eagle, and then there’s the dragon of winter which is coming to bring in the season and the two forces kind of oppose each other like yin and yang. I’ve only just arrived in Val d’Isère but I’ve already fallen in love with genepi, so the genepi plant is growing from the bottom. I was a bit worried because when I don’t have a particular subject, I tend to go a bit too far and keep drawing past the point that it’s finished.

No, we really love it! Are you particularly drawn to dragons?

Not necessarily but I like drawing them because they have a very particular way of moving, like a snake. And they have a belly and a back so you can make them turn as you draw them. And with dragons, because they are mythical creatures, you don’t have to follow any set rules; just use your imagination.

Do you watch a lot of fantasy?

Actually no, I don’t follow anything specific. But I am always going off into my imagination. My friends joke about me because I daydream a lot. They tell me they look round and I am just in my own world, not with them at all. I start to see something and I just completely disconnect- I’m usually thinking about drawings.

A lot of people tell me they want to learn to draw, but it’s just a case of practicing, looking inside your mind and taking inspiration from what’s around you. It’s something that’s not about you. It takes you outside of yourself. So if you want to start, look around and start reproducing things, or make a collage inside your mind. I think it’s really true that it’s something that everyone can do. Ok, there are some who are very talented artists, but everybody can draw and benefit from how meditative the process is.

Did you do any artistic training?

I can’t say that I’m an architect, but I did 3 years of an architecture course, so started my training in design. Even though I’m not going to be an architect, I’m so glad I went because it was just 3 years of creating.

Where do you like to be when you’re drawing?

Actually anywhere but it’s important for me not to have too many people around. Because it’s very therapeutic and too much going on can be distracting. It’s nice to have a time when you just go in the zone and don’t think and find the harmony of the elements you’re drawing. It’s intimate, it’s really my moment. Also sometimes I get an idea and I just laugh out loud. Like I drew this upright cartoon cat with its arms out and then thought, why are his arms like that and it hit me; he’s playing the piano!! And that made me laugh by myself and so people look at you funny.

We LOVE the cat playing the piano! What is it you enjoy about tattooing?

It’s cool because you go into an adventure with the person you are tattooing. I always have my gun with me so it brings about some very interesting experiences. Especially whilst travelling.

What’s your tattoo style?

I design a lot of little fantastical creatures. I’m taking my time with tattooing though because it’s an important path for me and I don’t want to rush it or do anything beyond my abilities. It’s very important in this line of work to find a mentor that wants to help you learn. I’m lucky to have had that, but I still have a lot to learn.

Do you have a favourite tattoo that you’ve done?

Yes, probably the girl with the flower for an eye.

And can we get one? More specifically, Sam would like a dog on his leg.

Yes I can do that for sure. I’ve done a few little dog drawings. And maybe you could shave your leg to have it done and only let the hair grow back where the dog is to make it fluffy.

Hahaha, that is an excellent idea. Sam will start shaving! Thank you so much for making such an incredible cover for us. You are great!

Check out Elisa’s work @elibi_ink

If you would like to get a tattoo from Elisa, drop her a line: +33760902128

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