The italian illustrator and IED Torino Alumnus tells his story. From studies to career among books, illustrated ceramic and TV programs

YOU & IED: your name, the IED School you attended, the year, and the Course you graduated in.
Hi! My name is Gabriele and I attended IED in Turin. I graduated in the summer of 2015 in Illustration and Visual Communication.

YOU NOW: your job description, where you work, projects you are working on etc.
I love to work in my little and cozy countryside studio. I work as a freelance illustrator for publishers, magazines and companies such as LaStampa, Mondadori Electa. And I also worked for Focus Junior, add editore and also for a French publisher called A2MIMO, among others. I collaborate with my friend and pottery designer Cecilia Mosso (she also graduated at IED, but in Jewelry and Accessories Design). We create illustrated pottery together. I draw visual maps and illustrated notes in the TV show La Banda dei Fuoriclasse on the national tv, live every day at the channel Rai Gulp. I love to make book projects totally designed by me as self-productions. I love to play with paper, materials and shapes of the books. For instance, one of my favorite self-made projects is Il Bestiario d’Italia. It’s a series of travel-books about the fantastic beasts and creatures of the Italian oral tales, told in the little towns in the countryside of Italy.

An illustration by Gabriele Pino

ITALIAN CREATIVITY: IED is synonym of creativity and also of Made in Italy. Let us know how both these aspects led you to choose IED and how they helped or influenced your career.
I wanted to explore some new creative paths and play with my creativity so I chose IED! Above all, I learned how to introduce myself in a professional way but also how to manage my work for establishing a professional future.


IED LOCATIONS: all our schools are found in some of the most creative and vibrant cities around the globe. Let us know why you choose Turin and what role it played in your student and future life.
I chose Turin because is very close to a little town in the countryside of Piemonte, where I still live today. I still live in the countryside because I think that being near to the nature it’s very stimulating for my creativity. Then, in addition after all I’m fond of Turin, I used to “explore” this city in different ways also before attending IED, even if I always returned to my beloved countryside. Turin is a vibrant and magic city and is also a place where illustrators, craft makers and designers create a positive network made of collaborations, events, festivals and helping each other’s, for me was like that. When I graduated I worked at times in Turin in festivals, events, exhibitions or selling my works in the several design markets travelling around Europe. I went sometimes in Anversa or in Amiens, then in Berlin for an artist residency and in Portugal. I used to do smart working years before the pandemic. Now, Turin called me back and I work indeed for RAI, the national TV, in the tv studio of Via Verdi 16, just next to the famous Mole Antonelliana.

Illustrated ceramics

CHALLENGES OF OUR TIMES: how have the challenging times we’re living affected your professional life?
During these challenging times I feel lucky as the collaboration with the national TV started due to the lockdown and the pandemic, to help teachers and children when all the schools of Italy were closed. The TV show La Banda dei Fuoriclasse is about school in television. The TV show is still going live today. I haven’t lost my other illustration works but unfortunately, I couldn't attend festivals, markets and fairs where often I participated with Cecilia. I think that this challenging year could be the right moment to finish a self-made project and try to sell it online or could also be the right moment to think about our career and profession online and in distance, could be an idea to elaborate an exhibition in your own garden, or apartment and make it visible with social media, creating an online event! Difficulties and challenges in times like this are undeniable but every emergency has sacrifices to be made what occasionally lead to changing paths but I want to think about this period as a pause, like the brackets in a story.


ADVICE: your recommendations to future graduates for a bright and creative future in your field.
At school I suggest you to play with yourselves: create, experience, be bold, don’t turn anxiety a daily routine. Remember that a hard and intense school time it’s first of all a time an opportunity to experience and learn. Don’t be too hard on yourselves. In the work and in professional illustration each one has his/her own methods and ways to create for that reason I  can tell you to try to know yourselves the best you can and try to understand the traits, the features that you love most about what makes you be who you are, discovering the topics or subjects that most hill and move you in order to use it in our own creativity and work!


MORE ABOUT YOU: let us have links to web pages where students can discover more about you and your work.
You can follow my activity on my Instagram.


LAST BUT NOT LEAST: What was the activity that you found most valuable to your personal growth? Also, can you tell us about your thesis project?
The most valuable activities during my years in IED have been the possibility to experience but, above all, to know how to introduce myself in a professional way. The thesis project at my graduate year was a collaboration with the Italian publisher Feltrinelli. We had to illustrate the worldwide famous book The Little Prince. Elaborating this thesis taught me that being truthful to yourself is much more rewarding and profitable in the long run than totally changing your ideas or points of view just to please others. I believe that “what is essential is invisible to the eye”.


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