My name is Ivan Marcelo Gallegos and I’m an illustrator based in Las Vegas Nevada. I make images that are fun, whimsical, and filled with warmth for everyone of all ages to enjoy. To create my work I use watercolors, colored pencils, pencils, and a variety of ink pens. For me there’s nothing like using traditional media to create something that feels special when you hold it in your hands or hang it on your wall. Digital is also part of my artist tool kit and Adobe Illustrator is my tool of choice for creating designs and flat style illustrations.
My journey to be an illustrator started over 20 years ago when I was in my final year in college. I was a senior in my computer animation major and I was working on my final animation project. Looking for inspiration I went to my schools library and discovered a book on classic children’s book illustration. I immediately fell in love with the works of Arthur Rackham, Beatrix Potter, E. H. Shepard, and many more. I wanted to be an illustrator and set to work refining my drawing and painting skills. Learning about the process of making a children’s book, learning from other artists, taking workshops, and figuring out what kind of illustrator I wanted to be. In that process I found I love drawing animals and animal characters. The books and stories that always bring me joy such as Wind and Willows, Winnie the Pooh, and Peter Rabbit all have animal characters that I enjoy. That same joy that I feel when I see those books is the same joy I want other people to feel in my work.
Currently I’m a freelance graphic and web designer. I have been working in that industry for 20 years and continue to do so. It has permitted me to learn and grow as an illustrator in my spare time. As I’ve grown as an illustrator, I have been taking on more commissions. In 2019 I rented out space in one of Las Vegas’s biggest art gallery studios, the Arts Factory. I had my work on display for an entire year and sold many pieces. The best part of that experience came on the first Friday of every month. That’s when the city holds its monthly art festival. There I would sit and paint while people walked by. I got to meet and connect with so many people through my art. I now feel it’s time to full embrace the next chapter of my career and embrace illustration full time.
When I’m ready to step away from the drawing board my hobbies and interests include reading fantasy, fairy tales and history. Video games, especially retro video games (so many wonderful memories)! Practicing yoga and pilates to stay healthy. I enjoy traveling and food. Spain is my current favorite destination for travel and food.
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