Andres Romero

Like many of his clients, we stumbled across Andres Romero’s graphic design work through his minimalist superhero poster series. After getting an early start using Photoshop to customize websites in the fifth grade, Romero has developed a unique design aesthetic and built an extraordinary portfolio and internet presence. Intrigued by his fresh perspective on design, we tracked down the Miami native and asked him for an inside glimpse into his work and inspirations.

Your website describes you as “a one-man graphic design studio.” Can you tell us a little more about your one-man band?

I've been freelancing since high school. I started locally, creating websites and identities for local businesses. Throughout college I slowly started taking more online clients. All of my current clients found me online, and a large portion of them found me because of my superhero posters.

How did you get into graphic design?

It all started when I was a kid. In the fifth grade, I stumbled upon a website called Neopets and got sucked into it. In Neopets you had the option to customize certain pages using HTML. I learned that all the "big kids" used Photoshop to make their pages fancy. Everything sort of snowballed from that point on.

Where do you find your inspiration?

Everywhere I possibly can. I subscribe to a few counterculture magazines so that I always have fresh content to look at. I frequently attend artistic events, and I always make sure to keep track of my peers to see what's trending.

Superheroes seem to be a recurring theme in your work. What draws you to these crime-fighting characters?

Superheroes became a trend in my work only recently. It all began with one friend wanting a poster of his favorite superhero for his dorm room…then everyone wanted their favorite heroes designed.

If you could be any superhero or have any super power, what would it be?

I'd definitely choose the power to stop time. There would be no such thing as deadlines!

If you were a superhero, who would your trusty sidekick be?

I'd probably want someone like Bender from Futurama. Bender’s chaotic personality would make sure there would always be something fun going on.

Your superheroes are quite minimal. How do you decide which details stay, and which go?

While I don't always follow my own method, I normally add details until you can figure out exactly who the hero is. I'll then go ahead and get feedback from friends and fellow designers to make sure they're still within theme (I've been known to go overboard with details a few times).

Which superhero do you think has the coolest hair?

I think Tank Girl has the coolest hair (or lack thereof) with her mostly shaved and dyed hair. It complements her attitude perfectly—I wish I knew someone like her in real life.

How would you describe your overall design aesthetic?

For the most part I tend to stick to clean and simple designs, even in my regular illustration work.

Describe your ideal day off.

My ideal day off would be a day at a ceramic studio being able to sculpt or throw on the wheel. Ceramics is my favorite medium. A whiskey-ginger while I'm sculpting would just sweeten the deal.

Who do you look up to in the art world?

There are so many different artists I look up to. If we go by the classics, I'd say M.C. Escher is my absolute favorite. I love way too many current artists, but right now I'd say Mark Ryden’s latest work is a favorite. As far as designers and digital art go, I look up to an artist who goes by the handle "Cronobreaker.” He's definitely been the biggest influence in my digital work.

If we were to sneak a peek at your iPod playlist, which artists would we find?

Mainly indie and alternative music (bands like Interpol, Metric, Bonobo), but I suppose you want to know the embarrassing ones. Here are some of the more notable embarrassing songs: “Digital Getdown” by *NSYNC, “Let it Whip” by Boyz II Men, and “Kiwi” by Maroon 5.

What’s your biggest vice?

My biggest vice is somewhere between procrastination and coffee. I'm from Miami, and everyone drinks Cuban coffee. Living in Texas, I've noticed it doesn't exist over here, so I have to get my coffee shipped over from my friends!

To see more of Romero's work, click here.
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