Cécile Gariépy

“I think whether you use film or illustration, it’s all about telling a good story.“


Hello Cécile!
What are you doing nowadays? 

I try to keep it simple. I walk my dog, I eat three times a day and I draw as much as I can. 

Tell us a bit about yourself, how would you define Cécile Gariépy? How did you get into illustration?
I did get into illustration by pure chance. I was doing my masters in cinema in Paris, and the work was very dry and academic. I thought I would doodle a little to keep my head from going crazy. I began putting my work on social media. Before I could actually understand what was going on, I was doing work for my favourite newspaper.

How do illustration and films intersect in your work?
I think whether you use film or illustration, it’s all about telling a good story. 

How would you describe your style in three words?
Simple, colourful, quirky. 

How do you hope people will feel when they see your works?
I hope it makes them smile. If they laugh, that’s even better. 

We love your colour choices. How do you choose the right colours to illustrate?
I’m mostly influenced by my daily mood. I’m often in a good mood, so most of the time I use bright colours. 

Can the creativity be learned later, or is it a feeling that is always within the human being?
I think it can be learned but it can not be taught. It’s an intimate process.

Your portfolio includes some pretty big clients, like Spotify or The New York Times. How did you first get to work with well-known brands like these?
Even pretty big clients simply send you a nice first email! Some emails just make you happier than others. 

What is the most played song on your playlist?
It’s becoming very cold and rainy in Montreal these days, so I keep myself happy with some Ethiopian jazz, like Hailu Mergia. 

Where are your favourite spots in Montreal? Food, coffee, shops, etc.
There is too many of them. I like getting coffee at Café Pista or Café Ferlucci, having lunch at Falco, drinking beer at Harricana, eating pizza at Gema. My all-time Montreal favorite restaurant is Vin Papillon. 

Which artist/illustrator, from all of history, would you most like meet with for dinner?
I’m not really a fangirl, I’d rather take my mom out for dinner!

What was the last thing that made you laugh?
My dog being very scared of children dressed up for Halloween. 

Who is your art/illustration hero at the moment?
Danish painter Peter Martensen, for his weird, dark and playful paintings.  

What’s the best thing about being an illustrator?
When I was a child, I was scolded when I scribbled on the walls. Now people pay me to do it.

Finally, Is there something you wish interviewers would ask you — but never do?
My favorite Spice Girl is Scary Spice. 

Thank you!


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