Now go, and make interesting mistakes. Make Interesting. Mistakes. Make glorious and fantastic mistakes. Break rules. Leave the world more interesting for you being here. Make good art.”
Hello, my name is Gabriella Vagnoli and I am a children’s book Illustrator. I came to it through a circuitous route that went from exploring various interests like theater, cinema, teaching and language. Communication was always the thread that connected all of these experiences and what attracts me the most about illustrating for children is exactly the ability to visually communicate a story that will be indelibly imprinted in a young mind. I know I still remember, vividly, many of the books and illustrations I read as a child, much more than I can remember many of the facts and figures I have learned through my years of schooling.
I work mostly digitally, but I am constantly searching for ways to have rich layered textures in my work and I am attracted to complex emotions in stories.
I have a BFA (summa cum laude) in Children’s Book Illustration from Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design and a BA in English and Spanish Language and Literature from the Universita degli Studi di Pisa.
I have experience illustrating children’s books for publishers (Dixi Books, City of Light) and for authors who are looking to self-publish. I also do occasional personalized commission work.
My work was selected to participate in two shows at the PJS Gallery in Denver and has been exhibited at various local cafes, where I sell prints of some of my pieces.
I was born in Pisa, Italy, from a Brazilian mom and an Italian dad. With my heart constantly in two different countries, I decided to add a third by moving to the United States and marrying an American. I am now raising two beautiful multicultural boys that think, like me, that the world is after all a very small place.
I love Radiohead and have a real passion for Shakespeare; in fact, I have created over 100 illustrated portraits of Shakespeare which you can find on Instagram under the account Shakesportraits