Diramazioni interviewed by Acheron books.
Siamo stati intervistati da Acheron books.

After interviewing Rom and Antonio De Luca, we chatted a bit with Diramazioni creators of the visually distinctive Samuel Marolla’s horror novels’ and short stories’ covers.
1) What is Diramazioni (“Branches” in English)?
Diramazioni is made up of two illustrators, Jessica and Lucio (aka Vocisconnesse [Disconnectedvoices] and Tryfar). It was born as a creative collaboration more than ten years ago with the creation of our website (http://www.diramazioni.it). Its design and portfolio evolved over the years.
Diramazioni can be considered a studio devoted to graphic design and illustration where our skills converge: we make illustrations (especially in publishing, but also in other fields), covers for books and e-books, artwork for CDs, graphic projects for book series, for catalogues and brochures, for websites and magazines, and corporate images (logo design, business cards, etc.). We were also commissioned to create some work in the advertising field, for example a set of illustrations that became the base for a commercial campaign for TV and press. This is what we’ve done up to now, depending on the kind of customers we found from time to time, collaborating with companies, publishing houses, associations, communication agencies, and writers, but we would like to focus on illustration, which is where we started from and that remains our main interest.
We’ve had the chance in the last few years, thanks in part to our good experience with Edizioni XII (an Italian publishing house specializing in horror fiction) with whom we collaborated as art directors and illustrators, to focus on horror and fantasy illustration for cross-genre (if we may use the word) novels and short stories that inspire us from both a reading and a visual point of view. These books are often they are varied and distinctive, content-wise.
Certainly, we are inclined to work in the publishing field, especially on projects with a fantastic or dark side; for example we were commissioned to work on a very interesting project based on Edgar Allan Poe’s short stories, “The illustrated Edgar Allan Poe” literary pop-up book. In any case, we look for jobs in different fields including illustrations for kids and teens and magazines.

2) What did you study and how did you create Diramazioni?
Lucio graduated at Art High School, Jessica at Language High School, and later we all majored in Illustration at Milan’s Arte e Messaggio school, where we met. We also attended other training courses including contemporary art, fantasy illustration, and later graphic and web design, plus a course in the Cultural Heritage sector (archives and documentary heritage) and stages in graphic design at the Photograph Archive of Milan’s Sforzesco Castle. Then there have been personal experimentations that, together with the determination to make something of our own, are our primal motivation. We had basically the same tastes in art, illustration and music. Lucio finished his studies a year before Jessica and started working as a freelancer between 2001 and 2002. The following year we started collaborating as “Diramazioni”, in the beginning by creating personal works, experimenting together and taking part in competitions, and then on commissioned projects. Certainly the internet was crucial in finding new contacts and collaborations, some of them very short, others lasting a long time. Currently we live and work together, led by a demanding and lazy art director: our female cat.

3) Your horror covers have a distinctive style that seem inspired by Dave McKean works. Is that true, or did the inspiration for them come from somewhere completely different?
We can say we’ve been inspired by many things. We absorb everything we create and creatively feed off our inevitable influences. They become part of our experience, by a perceptual point of view first, and then  creatively. We are influenced by symbolic (for example Bosch, Böcklin, Waterhouse) and expressionist art, from the fantastic and symbolic art of Remedios Varo and Carrington, from photography and cinema (for example Fincher e Jeunet), from the animation of the Quay brothers and Svankmajer that we think influenced one of the illustrators we most appreciate: Dave McKean (so your intuition is correct). McKean is really versatile and from our point of view is a sacred icon of contemporary illustration, even if there are many great illustrators in Italy and abroad.

4) What is Vocisceonnesse? A parallel project to Dirmazioni? Are you planning to expand parallel projects in the future?
As we said before, Vocisconnesse is just one of us. Diramazioni is a brand used for our common works, while Vocisconnesse and Tryfar are our “personal identities” (that in any case are part of “Diramazioni”) and that we use for works made individually.
For example Tryfar sometimes make CD artwork (especially for “dark” music) and other personal projects often focused on photography and on mysterious subjects, often linked to the wearing caused by the passing of time or the relationship with nature, places that you can just catch a glimpse or a vague memory of, bizarre architectures…
Vocisconnesse focus on artistic creations like small sculptures and paintings inspired inspired to the worlds of fantasy, mythology, folklore, fairy tales, fables, dreams, animals and creatures that could come out from a Middle Age Bestiary, like surreal doors from other worlds, clothes and accessories and many other things. The most of our works are available on our e-shop and are parallel to commissioned works.
This personal experience, by the way, merge into our collaborative projects and have similar interests in common.
We don’t know what will happen in the future, but as said before, we would like to focus more on illustration than on graphic design.