As they say in Spain, the rest is historia.
Jose is a Spanish designer, 29-years-old and living in Valencia, which is in eastern Spain on the Mediterranean Sea. Jose designs posters for communication campaigns that are very connected to the world of opera. He also designs book covers for several publishing houses, his other passion. He has cultivated a worldwide clientele from Valencia: theaters in The Netherlands, conductors in US, opera festivals in Italy, orchestras in New York, publishers in Germany and Spain. He even developed branding for companies in Ontinyent (the village where he was born).
When did you begin designing opera marketing collateral?
I started designing opera posters in 2007. It was my final project after finishing studies of design in Arts and Crafts School. I contacted the marketing department of Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia (Opera House of Valencia), and I developed a proposal design of that season. The complete team of Palau were excited with my proposal and asked me the posters for next season. When everything seemed to be going well, due to political reasons of the Palau, they left me, and started working with another designer. That was a pity. But also, it was my beginning as a designer for the opera world.
Do you do other pieces besides posters or is the poster design incorporated into the programs?
It depends on each work. I prefer the projects where I can also design the brochures, postcards, flyers . . . because I take care that the campaign image is implanted correctly. Although sometimes I create the image of the communication campaign, and then, the client adapt it to the different communication supports.
Why did you start working with opera marketing materials? Are you an operagoer? Your design is so smart that it suggests that you are.
I started with opera materials for two reasons. Firstly, I’m connected with classical music and lyrics since I was a child, when my father often listened to them at home. That was when I started to love opera. And, secondly, I always knew I wanted to design posters. And a teacher, (today a friend) suggested me to design opera posters. Then, you get involved with the rest of marketing materials as part of the communication campaign.
I’m not exactly an operagoer, I’m an opera lover. I used to listen to opera; I love buying Opera Bluray productions. I like to be connected with opera news, and I’m a follower of several opera singers. And I also go to the opera when I can get good tickets.
How do you decide what materials to use in your 3-D, mixed-media approach, for instance, the heart made of raspberries for Don Giovanni.
The materials used in my posters are defined by the creative concept I develop for each work. For selecting the concept, I have no concrete method. Depending what am I looking for the concept, I find the materials. A walk by the mountain, buying at the supermarket, having dinner with friends, or walking with my girl, are good moments to find and select the materials.
In the case of Don Giovanni, the creative concept for that opera was love. I needed an element to represent a powerful love. And the colour of love is red. So, one day while shopping at the supermarket, the raspberries impacted me by their red powerful colour. And there, I immediately visualized the poster, a love as powerful as red raspberries. The rest of the work is developed at the office. Compositions, proofs, changes, more proofs, and finally photo.
Are you hoping to expand your clientele to include more of Europe? The US?
Today, Internet and English permit good communication with clients worldwide. On the one hand, I’m collaborating with conductors in Florida (US) developing all communication supports for innovative opera formats. And on the other hand, I’m designing posters for classical opera festivals in Italy (Europe). Now, United Kingdom is a country with good opera culture, where I’m increasing contacts, too.
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More of Jose’s work can be seen at his website: www.josellopis.com. You can follow him on Twitter @josellopis or Like his Facebook fanpage.