Vincent Mahé

Born in Paris, Vincent moved to Brittany at the age of 3 where he grew up cooking delicious meals for his mother and brothers alongside his father who was a great chef.

He left home at the age of 16 to study Art in Rennes and moved to Paris in 2003. He then studied Animation at Gobelins and worked as a set designer in the animation industry following graduation in 2008. During this time he began to develop his own personal artworks and in 2012 took the plunge in to freelance illustration and created a co-working studio with friends.

His work has been exhibited in Paris many times, first of all, in an exhibition called ‘The Parisianer’ where 100 illustrators had to imagine a cover for a fake Parisian ‘New Yorker’, as well as for a pop-up store called Condensed and for a party at the agency that represents him. His work has featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Wired, many more magazines and Nobrow #8 as well as a book cover for a book called La Librairie de la Pomme Verte (editions des Arènes). 750 Years for Nobrow is his first book.

To find out more about his work, we asked Vincent to answer the following questions:

 What inspires your work?

I have a large number of influences. I have always been a huge fan of Hergé but I can also cite Sempé, Voutch, Sasek, Eyvind Earle, Chris Ware of course and Ottomo. More widely in Art History: Hokusai and Japanese prints in general, all the work of Hopper. The photographers Jay Maisel and Andreas Gursky are also references to me, and the directors Ozu, Tati and Myasaki of course. I’ve always been interested by architecture and the history of cities in general. Le Corbusier, Jean Prouvé, Mies Von Der Rohe and Thom Mayne are some of the many architects/ designers that I respect the most.

Tell us a bit about your process…

I always start with very tiny, thumbnail sketches in a big note nook. With this scanned, I start sketching on top with cintiq and photoshop, line and colour. When the result is satisfactory, I clean it either on computer or on paper. I sketch a lot, particularly when I travel.