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Award-Winning Illustrator Anthony Foronda Presents Journey as an Artist

Published on February 19, 2016

Award-Winning Illustrator Anthony Foronda Presents Journey as an Artist

he Department of Art and Art History at Eastern Connecticut State University hosted artist Anthony Foronda on Feb. 17. Foronda, a designer, illustrator, humanitarian, and owner of Studio Foronda in Putnam, CT, has had illustrations placed in the Washington Post, National Public Radio, and was also selected for the Lurzer’s Archive of Illustration’s “200 Best Illustrators Worldwide” for his works in 2011 and 2014.

“When I come up with ideas and concepts that effect me, it doesn’t take me a long time to finalize my interpretation or my response,” said Foronda who praised the liberal arts for broadening his perspective on art. Foronda then walked the audience through an in-depth tour of a collection of his published illustrations and shared some personal works.

Foronda reflected on turning away from his “playful” style, and focusing on societal issues. Like his peers, Foronda created his own style of art called “realismé”. He refers to this style as a “more realistic interpretation of the figure.” Foronda created this style to portray issues that bothered him. On his website he shares many illustrations that touch on societal and political issues including same-sex marriage, the Mexico border and mental welfare.

Amnesty International asked Foronda what his process was after selecting one of his works for publication. Foronda responded, “I think the hardest part is coming up with the ideas. But when something shocks you so much, those ideas flow pretty easily.” He compared his visual art to music saying, “It’s almost like jazz. When you listen to jazz and you’re in the moment, and you’re reacting to the rest of the players, it’s an immediate reaction and it’s a forceful output. Same goes with art.”

Foronda ended with advice to artists saying, “Surround yourself and collaborate with people. Don’t just get stuck in your studio. Go out there and make connections.” He urged the audience to challenge themselves saying, “Don’t sit there with your art and dwell on it until its perfect. Just get to a point where you feel just good about it.”

Written by Anthonly LaPenna