MV Most Creative Award - MSS 2015, Luis Méndez Juanola

by Massive Voodoo

Good Morning Jungle,

since several years MV hands out their "Most Creative Award" on the many Miniature Shows the monkey gang attends. We give away this special prize to the project that has the most creative potential in a show - of course only from our point of view.

Of course this is not easy on miniature shows as many painters come up with so cool ideas and you can believe us, that the task of finding our favourite piece in Monte San Savino this year was a very hard task. Thanks to Phil, Raffaele and Roman MV managed to do so!

Check MV Monte San Savino 2015 review (tons of links to gallery and reviews!)

 Raffa + Luis and Roman + Luis

So far we never did an interview with one of the winners, but that is something we want to take up and hold on for the future. Roman and Luis prepared that interview for our MV readers. Photos by Luis himself.

This post is all about  

Luis Méndez Juanola
a very talented miniature artist and a nice guy. We want to thank him for his collaberation for this blogpost and want to congratulate him again on winning this special award on a very special show!

We hope you enjoy!
Drop a comment if you do, share it and tell Luis what you think of his project?
Did MV choose it's most creative Award well?

Luis' facebook page "Fantasydemon Miniatures"

Luis recieving his medal from Raffa and Roman of MV. Photo by Ben Curry.

Luis' "I See You!"

Who are you? Who is the person behind Fantasy Demon Miniatures?

I´m Luis Méndez Juanola. I´m 37 years old and I live in Madrid. I have a B.S. degree in Fine Arts at Complutense University (Madrid). Nowadays, I work as a civil servant in the same city.

 Luis and his ideas.

What was your first moment you encountered miniatures?
(Where did you see them for the first time in your life?)

I was twelve years old the first time I encountered miniatures. I was wandering around a shopping mall when I came across a box of the mythical HEROQUEST. I asked for it as a Christmas present and I had the opportunity to paint my first miniatures that winter. My friend Carlos and I painted a couple orcs using Humbrol paint. The experience struck me instantly. I´ve never had again that strong feeling of evasion in fantasy worlds. I still find very inspiring Leds Edwards and Gary Chalk artworks (illustrators of HEROQUEST box).

How did you come to start with miniatures yourself?
Explain your passion: What do you love about this artform?

Painting miniatures became a real hobby thanks to an elder friend. He introduced me to painting miniatures after exhausting skateboarding sessions. We used to rest in his bedroom and while he painted miniatures I used to watch carefully the procedure. By that time he was much more skilful than I was and it was very instructive. But it was around 14 when I made great progress painting with Carlos -a childhood friend and BFA as well. We used to read the White Dwarf magazine. What I really love about painting miniatures is to get away from daily work and deep into a fantasy world.

You have won the MV Most inspirational Award on Monte San Savino Show 2015. A show which was full with great and creative projects, but yours was definatly our winner of this special trophy. Tell us about that project - how did you find your idea? What was your imagination of it?

My college years were a big gap in my miniature production. For the three years I focused on painting, drawing, and sculptural modelling. I made the most of art education not only learning to use the tools and materials from Master teachers, but also learning anatomy, light and colour theory, composition and visual communication. The last two years at university I specialised in etching.

Nevertheless, my first job after university was as a sculptor. In this project (I see you) I´d like to extend the boundaries of miniature production. I´d like to produce an artwork for all types of viewers. That is, not only for specialised miniature spectators but also for newcomers. So, I decided to use a life-size element connecting reality with the scaled-down fantasy world. This is how I found the idea of making a magician hand holding a crystal ball. The full size hand should connect both worlds in a kind and natural way.

How long did it take you to finish this wonderful piece?

It´s difficult to calculate the working time in hours. But I´ll say that sculpting the miniature and painting has taken eight months time.

What did you enjoy about the process and what did you not like about the process of creating this beauty?

I had not modelled since university years and I´ve really enjoyed rediscovering sculpting again. In addition, what I created at college was modelled in life size and in I see you, the hobbit and the sphere are scaled down objects. So I must admit this artwork is my first miniature sculpting project. Worst of all, was painting a scratch. I modelled objects using different clays (FIMO, Supersculpey and Milliput) and it turned a nightmare to use the same painting technique in spite of the thick coat of imprimation. You have to be highly skilled and adaptable to paint on top in few time.

After struggling with clays I just can say: God bless Workshop plastic! I remember a very stressful situation, two weeks before the Monte San Sabino competition, when my compressor broke down. I could not have finished I see you if Mr. Díez Amago wouldn´t have lent me his own compressor. Furthermore, the final assembly of the objects and setting out the painting steps has been large complex. You´ll see it in some tutorials.

What was the best moment in the story of this project?

It´s difficult to say...My girlfriend and I got great satisfaction seeing the project progress. From the first sketches through the sculpting process and the final paint. I take this opportunity to thank her help, she is behind the most important creative decisions.

What would you suggest a beginner in miniature painting? Your most important tip?

My advice to beginners is to start copying. Picasso copied the great painters to learn their technique and once he mastered the use of tools, methods and procedures, he interpreted reality. For those that are tap into the world of miniatures, I´d recommend to learn the basics of colour theory. It´s very common to reduce the colour theory to the hues in the colour wheel. (Working with hues is what we do matching our clothes every morning in front of the mirror). An colour theory should also include mastering the colour properties of value and saturation. Finding a personal gesture in brushstrokes is another area where they could make considerable improvements.

Thank you again Luis for the nice interview and congratulations on your well deserved trophies.

Stay up to date with Luis' creations!
Luis' facebook page "Fantasydemon Miniatures"

...and if you want to see more interviews by MV
check this link!


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