Lonely Planet Writer

In the studio with Ferran Capo, illustrator for Lonely Planet Magazine

Illustrator Ferran Capo hard at work © Anna Izquierdo

The latest US edition of Lonely Planet Magazine has hit the shelves, so here's a behind-the-scenes look at some of its contents!

We chatted to magazine illustrator Ferran Capo about how he turned funny anecdotes about solo travel fails from Lonely Planet staff into striking illustrations for a magazine feature.

Tell us about the brief

I was supplied with four short stories on solo travel fails, all of which featured a low point followed by a happy ending. My task was to try and sum up this low point in a humorous drawing!

How did you make a start?

I always start sketching with pencil and paper; sometimes I introduce colour at this stage to add a new dynamic. I had a bit of a different approach for each drawing, as two of them are quite static and two feature movement so I tried to get an almost cinematographic feeling. I then redraw the images until I am happy with the balance and the composition stands for itself with or without colour. This is when I begin to add colour digitally, adding a lot of layers with textures and fine-tuning the illustrations.

Were there any challenges?

Getting the angle and framing of the scenes right was quite tricky. I made some minor adjustments on colour palettes after some initial feedback but in general, I had a lot of freedom in my proposal, which allowed me to be even more creative!

What’s the one item in your studio you can’t live without?

I guess my computer – but even that I could get rid of if I'm being really strict... Perhaps sunlight? I don't know! But I have lots of plants and I have a Bengal cat called Google which keep me happy in my little space.

How did you get into illustration?

I studied graphic and product design when I was younger, and then I pestered people until someone let me illustrate something! I now work in several disciplines, both directing video and illustrating for magazines.

Ferran's illustrations

'Third wheeling in Venice' sketches
'Third wheeling in Venice' final version

'Blue & bagless in Mozambique' sketches
'Blue & bagless in Mozambique' final version
'Grounded in Vietnam' sketch
'Grounded in Vietnam' final version
'Lost and lonely in Laos' sketch
'Lost and lonely in Laos' final version

See more behind-the-scenes sketches from our pool of creative talent: In the studio with James Provost, illustrator for How to Pack For Any Trip.

Find Lonely Planet Magazine (US) on US newsstands, digitally on iTunes, Nook and Kindle, or subscribe from anywhere at lonelyplanet.com/usmagazine.