The Magic of Zuco

Meet the Character Designer Who’s Guided by Instinct

Graphic designer by day, illustrator at night. Meet Julien, the 36-year-old husband and father who lives in Angers, France.

“During the day I work for a company,” he says. “At night I work for my pleasure or do a little bit in freelance.”

And it’s at night, when he switches hats, that Julien becomes Zuco, and the magic happens.

Working by Instinct

Zuco says he never starts out his illustrations with a very precise idea of what he wants. Instead, he prefers to allow his instinct to guide him and to invent his characters gradually as he draws.

“I’m very experimental. I start off by drawing many characters and then choose the ones I prefer from my sketches.”

A Glimpse of the Character Design Process

Like most illustrators, Zuco is a big fan of vector art, and after hand sketching and scanning his characters, he works on them extensively in Illustrator before adding the finishing touches to them in Photoshop and exporting them.

He says that the goal of his work is simply to develop something that is highly personal and to explore and produce as much as possible.

Zuco’s Inspiration

But, as we know, no artist works in a vacuum, and Zuco is no exception. He draws inspiration from many artists—Kuocheng Liao, Mother Volcano, Niark and Dric Studio to name a few—and many places, including Behance, which he admits is his favourite website and social network.

“I find everything I want there and think it’s the best place for keeping an eye on new developments and trends in the industry.”

And it’s on Behance where you can find more of Zuco’s fabulous work.

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