Garrido Design was born in 1991 in Caracas, Venezuela. He's a graphic designer, muralist, tattoo artist and, above all, a calligraphic artist. It all started when he was little and he became interested in hip-hop and rap, which eventually brought him closer to graffiti and tags when he was 12 years old. In 2012 he began his approach to calligraphy with a course taught by a great Venezuelan graffiti artist and designer, Burnen Wong. In 2015 he moved to Barcelona to study branding and
creation. Here he managed to develop his passion and his personal abstract style that he calls “Gextura”. Since then, he has been invited to numerous events and workshops.
Muralist, tattoo artist, lettering artist and graphic designer. Which label represents you best? What technique do you feel most comfortable working with? Which of them is a bigger challenge?
Although I do not like to label myself because we are always evolving, if I chose one to define myself I would be a calligrapher or artist of letters. I always try that everything I do is linked to them.
The technique I feel most comfortable working with is definitely murals. As a graphic designer I spend a lot of time sitting at a computer, but I definitely prefer to go outdoors to paint and if it is with colleagues to enjoy it, much better.
For me the biggest challenge has been tattooing. Each skin is very different and hence the difficulty of each tattoo.
How does living and training in international cities with different cultures influence the development of your artistic career?
It is very rewarding and enriching. Meeting people from other cultures expands your mind and knowing the artistic minds of those other cultures makes you grow at a very high level and very fast, both artistically and personally. It is a great joy being able to experience whatyou can find here in Barcelona on an artistic level.
Your calligraphic works are very representative. Do you have artistic training in this field? What techniques do you use to paint your letters? Can you describe the creative process from idea to realization?
I have taken different courses both in person and online for my development in calligraphy. What helped me is a lot of practice and patience, which I have developed alongside lettering.
My basic technique is always calligraphy with a flat tool. Normally with small brushes, or big brushes if it is wall format.
Depending on the project, if it is a phrase or something abstract, my technique, which I have called “gexture”, is always on paper and with a flat brush I begin by making sketches. I feel that starting manually allows me to have more freedom, evenmore when it comes to strokes for letters. Once different sketches have been made and with a clear idea of what I want, I pass a photograph to the Ipad and make an edit of how it would look, I make color tests and decide what I need to have a clear idea of the final project.
Gold can be a difficult color to apply at the coverage level. What materials do you use when working with this color?
The best gold ink I have tried so far that really works on any surface and any color is Liquid by MTN.
We can see your work on multiple surfaces, from walls to umbrellas and clothing. What does experimenting with various formats and creative media give you?
I learn by knowing which inks or designs work effectively on certain supports and this allows me to be more creative and careful when making pieces on new supports.
At the beginning of this year, you participated in the Writers JAM, what did you take from the meeting?
The good vibes that you share with other artists is incredible. This initiative of the jams seems great to me since many of us know the works of others, but we have almost never met each other. This is a way not only to meet each other and connect but also to share our experiences.
BONUS TRACK, Tell us something that you feel like or that you think has slipped our minds and it would help to better explain who Garrido Design is.
Part of my job when I make phrases or words, other than commissions, is to transmit something positive to people. I always try that every phrase or word comes from something that helped inspire me to improve or simply to make a bad day better. Many times it comes from music. I want to be able to transmit that good feeling to people, giving the word or phrases a greater power with good calligraphy or a powerful and impressive design, in order to attract the attention of the reader and then be able to achieve that feeling that inspires the phrase or word.