Founder of Mezclao Studio. Mariery Young is a Latin American illustrator with a background in architecture. Her work is inspired by Latin American folklore and biodiversity. Surrounded by female characters from bedtime stories, Mariery animates strong characters from her childhood with lush wild nature as the backdrop.

Tell us a fun fact about you 3am is the best time for bacon pancakes. Plant lover! I'm that person that will stop in the middle of the road to get some new cuttings to regrow or adopt an abandoned plant from a sad garden.

How did you get into illustration? It all started with a photoshop class gone wrong, a very stubborn mentor that took me under his wing and actively decided I should focus on art and not architecture. Looking back I was lucky to have people in my life that could see what I had no idea I could become.

Who or what inspires you the most? My to-go inspiration is from my childhood rebooting and mixing together references. I grew up binge watching 90s MTV, peeking on record store heavy metal album covers and stealing my uncles ninja turtles and skeletor toys.

What does a typical day look like for you? I'm not a morning person. I wake up after successfully ignoring at least 10-15 snooze alarms on my phone. Check emails for client replies or my to-do lists in asana (my personal Money Penny). If there's nothing urgent to get off the list then I hit the beach for a swim to wake up and then run back to the studio for a morning workout. I make a first batch of coffee and cook some nice breakfast then open illustrator and start my day. Coffee keeps flowing throughout the day while I work on my designs. I work until late at night unless I'm having a creative block.

What do you do when you have a creative block? The best way to shake off a creative block for me is to stop working. Hit the grocery store and cook a ridiculous amount of food. BBQ, Shinese or roasts are my to-go meals and then i'll binge watch something that I love (Beetlejuice, the 5th element or Studio Ghibli).

Top three clients you've worked with? Nike, Fab.com and Peugeot.

What tools (digital or not!) do you use to create your work? Chinese ink, Wacom tablet and adobe illustrator are my essential tools.

What's your favourite resource for inspiration? Inspiration for my colour combinations come from 80s-90s references. I love working on projects that showcase biodiversity, specially botanical illustrations.

Do you have any tips for artists thinking of doing freelance? Prove them wrong. There is no right way or order for how things should be. Just trust your gut, do your research, work on your skills and things will start to falling into place.

What would your dream project be? I'm just going to put it out there... Doing my first solo-show is still on the bucket list. I'd also love to get the chance to take over a space and cover it with my designs and interactive installations. The next steps for me are to add more movement into my designs, through animations, AR or 3D mapping and maybe finding other artist that would like to collaborate.

How can fans keep up-to-date with your work? Instagram


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